July 22, 2024

A Beginner’s Guide To CRM & Salesforce

Without effective client relationship management, what good is marketing? One could even say that customer relationship management (CRM) is the bedrock of marketing and everything related to it, according to certain management gurus. CRM focuses on handling interactions with clients, both present and future.

Salespeople and managers can learn a lot from every interaction with customers, whether it’s over the phone, online, or in person. These insights are often lost in the employee’s inbox, personal files, or even their own thoughts. The focus of customer relationship management is on transforming these data points into actionable insights about the clientele.

Before your business can launch a CRM exercise, it must first develop a CRM strategy. Starting without a clear goal in mind increases the likelihood that you will become sidetracked and fail to complete your intended task. Key components of a customer relationship management strategy include creating clear objectives, identifying success indicators, writing down the plan to achieve goals, and outlining tactics to mitigate risks.

A fundamental requirement for any business in this day and age is to adapt to the needs of the modern, educated consumer. It all comes down to how a business can build its strategy around its consumers and make them its first priority. The key to a successful project management strategy may lie in selecting the appropriate CRM software. Before making a selection, you must complete a diagnostic exercise to determine which link in the chain is missing. Discover all there is to know about Salesforce by enrolling in our course today.

Salesforce, a customer relationship management system, does all of the aforementioned and more. From lead creation to transaction conclusion, this program streamlines the entire process. First, we’ll try to break down the process into its component parts:

1 Entering leads into Salesforce

This is the stage of identification of a sales lead. A marketer advertises, attends trade shows, engages in online marketing through various platforms and performs many other marketing activities. All to gain contacts which can be converted into sales leads. A sales lead is an unqualified sales prospect that shows interest in the products or services being supplied by a marketer and provides his/her contact information to be contacted at a later date.

On Salesforce, you can enter the information about various leads, their sources and opportunities that may exist through them. How a company would like to create views of the data, assign leads to various employees and capture information from the source survey or form is up to them.

2 Qualification of sales leads

The second stage is about the qualification of a sales lead. When a decision is taken to pursue a sales lead, the lead becomes a contact. At this point, the system creates three objects: an account, a contact and an opportunity.

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A contact is a field that stores all the relevant data about the particular individual – his/her designation, contact details, address, role in the sales process etc.

For converting leads into contacts, Salesforce provides a ‘convert’ option. Link the lead to an existing account name or add a new one if required. There is a default field for describing the ‘opportunity’ on hand. Any follow up tasks can also be listed down which reduces the person dependency. You could also add tasks that are relevant to your internal processes. Get your Salesforce PD1 certification to know more about it.

3 Creating an account

In Salesforce, an account represents an entity, which could be a current or prospective customer, supplier, partner, and maybe even a competitor. All your communication with an entity – be it documentation of deals closed in the past, decision maker’s contact details and even the progress of current deals – gets recorded under its account in the system.. It is a one-stop shop to know whatever has been exchanged with a particular entity.

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4 Assigning leads

You may have an internal workflow process every time you convert a new lead, such as an email to the team or the assignment of the lead to a specific member in the sales team. Assignment of leads can take place based on certain parameters that have been designed by you. Manual entries are also permitted in case if you want to overwrite what is recorded in the system. There may also be an event causing the need for a shift of ownership of a lead, creating a need for re-assignment. All these and more are possible in Salesforce.

5 Creating opportunities

The opportunities section in Salesforce captures data relating to sales, deals which have not yet been closed, negotiation details, expected date of closure and the like. Details regarding products and quotes that you have provided to prospective leads also need to be mentioned.

The opportunity field is the nucleus of what the sales process is all about – getting more and more sales for the company. If this section of the system is kept updated timely with precise data, it can also provide an insight into the sales pipeline. Details about the owner of the opportunity, the opportunity name, indicative amount, expected closure date, stage of the deal cycle and probability of winning the deal are some details that form a part of this object field.

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