Track sales data with ease by following these tips.
Data collection is a very critical, but often less talked about, part of the sales funnel. Having dedicated systems in place to capture and organize contact information for leads, along with a variety of other data points, can offer vital support to the entire sales process. Whether you’re looking to start incorporating more data into your process or want to optimize your existing strategy, we have a few key tips that we’ve gleaned from many years of managing this information for our clients.
The Basics: Have A CRM
If you are still using spreadsheets or address books to record data about potential new advertisers, it’s time for an update. There are so many customer relationship management (CRM) programs out there at a variety of different price points. If you aren’t familiar, a CRM is basically just a platform for storing information about potential and current customers. From addresses and emails to notes from conversations, these systems can help you streamline your work-flow and stay organized.
Use Digital Means To Capture Leads
If you are attending a trade show for relationship building, don’t forget to use a lead capture app or device provided by the host organization. Or go the low tech digital route of taking a photo of all the business cards you collect so that when you get back into the office you don’t have to worry about having lost the physical copies.
Enter Data Right Away
When you receive a new lead or an update to an existing prospect, put it in the system immediately. As much as possible, automate data recording—many website plug-ins and email marketing platforms can be integrated directly with your CRM. But even if you are manually updating your system, be sure to be as diligent as you can with your data. Schedule regular times to do updates and evaluate any new leads you’ve captured. Regimenting this process will help keep you from missing out any hot prospects.
Take Detailed Notes
When it comes to engaging with leads, be sure to take detailed notes about each conversation. While, in the moment, you may be confident that you’ll remember their email response or what you talked about on the phone—most of the time, you will not. Make sure you take notes that are short enough that you’ll actually read them later and are detailed enough that they’ll trigger your memory of the conversations you’ve had.
While data collection is likely the least glamorous part of sales, it might just be the most important. Be patient and accurate when recording data so that you can get a hold of potential new customers and reach out to them with customized content and opportunities. Remind yourself of the payout that comes from successfully contacting a fully qualified lead at the right time, with the most relevant information.