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This post was written by Efficyers

When monitoring a new CRM project, 3 phases are crucial for optimal result: informing, identifying and analysing.

What is the situation like in most companies?

In most companies, the situation is this:

The project is monitored without any long term vision and the strategy is never updated after it was defined, mostly on an annual basis.

Teams are mostly reacting to events instead of anticipating them (which would allow them to take care of issues before they gain in importance).

Their vision of performances is often warped. For example, a sales rep who has a reputation of being the “best” when all he does is “win the jackpot” from time to time, while, sometimes, the N°3 or 4 sales rep, thanks to their regularity, gets the biggest turnover.

Data is often available only a posteriori (for example halfway through the month) and not in real time, which makes it impossible to take the right decisions in time.

This is what we call the “Christopher Columbus syndrome”: no one knows where they are going, but they are going there… And with a bit of luck they hope they get somewhere!

How can business monitoring change?

It is now possible to switch from monitoring by empirical analysis and without any long-term plan to using reporting and analysis tools.

Indeed, several phenomena have emerged over the last few years:

Monitoring tools have become more accessible (you currently need under 2 days to implement one)

Their ease of use allows everyone to use them and create reports

The goal of these tools is to have short term profitability

Data is available in real time

The aim of these tools is not only to report, but also to allow you to take action right away, etc.

Phase 1 : Coaching your commercials and taking the right decisions

In our case study (see video), we will see how to coach a commercial team, how to analyse and anticipate the evolution of your business and to take the right action.

Processes to implement

Implement a sales forecast system (at least on an Excel file, ideally on a CRM) with updates at the beginning and the end of each month (at least).

The aim is to monitor ongoing projects, and not to be taken aback anymore when surprises or problems arise.

Require from your sales reps a regular update (at least once a week) on current projects, for better monitoring of your business.

You will have better insight into the portfolio of current projects and avoid the “syndrome of the 20th of the month” (when a sales rep announces you that a contract that was supposed to be signed is lost or postponed to the next month!).

Analyse sales / sales reps in order to identify the weaknesses and strengths of each of them, define a personal coaching programme and share the best practises.

Phase 2 – Identifying hidden gems in your prospects & customers base

This second case study aims to explain how to profile companies and analyse your customers base. After this, you will be able to detect new business opportunities according to the different profiles you spotted.

We are also explaining how to do geomarketing analyses in a few clicks, and identify growth potentials arising from a bad network coverage of the territory, a lack of distributors in a specific region…

Your action plan for your customers and prospects

Centralise your customers and contacts base. Update them, because a file loses 10% of its worth per year (departures, companies closing down…).

A good trick is to organise a “new contact” day where sales reps & marketing teams have to file in as many contacts as they can (through a motivating contest).

You can also implement a semestrial / annual “inactive contacts” day where the whole company (marketing, services, commercials…) goes over all the inactive projects.

Analyse your customer base so you can identify your “key customers”, i.e. those who will amount to 80% of your turnover this year (for example: 5 distributors, 5 points of sale… that will bring the majority of your upcoming business).

You can also identify potential “growth pockets” through the sale of complementary products to a group of target clients. Profiling can also help you identify who your typical client is thanks to precise data. You can find similar people on Facebook, Linkedin…

Finally, you can have a critical analysis of your tops and flops this month / trimester so you can draw lessons from it.

Phase 3 – Improving the monitoring and follow-up on your projects and service delivery

This last part aims to help you assess the performances of technical teams, and the reasons why customers might be unhappy.

Your action plan for your service team

Implement a satisfaction scale, on the NPS model, so you can measure your quality of service and see what your customers’ opinion is.

Structure your service activity so you can have a global view of your business and mostly what is (or isn’t) invoiced, so you can put an end to “free service” and invoice what needs to be.

Analyse the profitability of your services so you can identify the sources of undercharging (differences between charged and expected time and analysis of those disparities… without falling into a culture of “profitability above all”).

How about taking action now?

If you take advantage of your CRM in the right way, it can be one of the best tools to help you quickly take the right decisions and manage your resources most efficiently.

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