Guest Post: CRM Works

Today’s post is courtesy of guest blogger Flavil Hampsten, Senior Vice President of Ticket Sales & Database Marketing at Bobcats Sports and Entertainment (originally posted on his blog).

Fact:  SALES MANAGERS LOVE CRM

Fact: SALESPEOPLE HATE CRM SYSTEMS

Why is this?  It’s because there is a disconnect between salesPEOPLE and sales managers.

Sales managers want to ensure their salespeople are working…while sales people, especially veteran sales people, want to do things their own way and not be micro-managed.

Can’t we all get along?

Here is the true fact, if the system is used correctly it is a benefit to both parties.

How can it be used effectively?

Sales Assistance: This is a big one.  Sales managers and salespeople have one thing in common…they all want to generate revenue.  Having a trackable pipeline of prospects allows your manager to give tips on how to close, resolve objections, or to conjure next steps to move the sale forward.

This also allows sales management to view who is buying the products which will lead to them giving salespeople the most profitable lead list to call upon.

Lead Organization:  Unless you are a company that only sells to 4-5 clients, the chance is that you are calling on hundreds if not thousands of prospects.  If you don’t use CRM properly, how can you find which ones have kids to invite to the circus?  How do you know which ones you’ve been calling on for 64 straight weeks and need to make a new approach on?  How do you know who to call when a new promotion or product price is released?

The trick of CRM is sorting through who should get calls, when they should get calls or emails, and what type of messaging should be sent.  If you do not have a solid system you are having leads fall through the cracks.

Legal: No one wants to get sued.  If you are sending mass emails and do not have certain opt-out options, legal action can be taken against you.

Builds Culture: Unless you like to be in a wild, wild west sales environment where leads are stolen and only the conniving survive, then you need a system in place.  Specifically, you need a system that encourages sales proactivity without the fear of someone swooping in at the end to steal the rewards.

In the end, CRM is not a waste of time, it actually saves time if managed correctly.  Mangers need to set processes that help salespeople and salespeople need to manage their own database to ensure they’re hitting goals.  This is a program that is not going away, so we better all learn how to maximize its potential.