Published by : Louis G. Larochelle
Companies use a CRM to improve their sales performance through systematized process management. While it's an excellent intention, I often find that companies do not exploit their tool to its full potential. Indeed, most of them use the basic version of the software, without trying to adapt it to their reality.
To have a better picture of each step and opportunity in the sales process, I advocate adopting the Baseline Selling methodology and integrating it with their CRM (Customer Relationship System).
The 4 Stages of Baseline Selling
Baseline Selling uses a baseball field to represent the phases of the sales process.
Map this methodology to your CRM, as it details each component of the steps, from prospecting to closing the sale.
The Four Stages:
- Getting to first: it's at this stage that salespeople prepare - even before engaging in the field, by identifying the ideal customer targeted during the prospecting. To get to the first base, the representative must contact a prospect and identify at least one problem to solve to get an appointment.
- Getting to second: it is at this stage that sales representatives discover the compelling reasons to buy, that they quantify the problem of prospects and that they differentiate themselves from the competition.
- Getting to third: they now qualify the decision criteria, the timeline and the competitors.
- Running home: The salesperson presents his offer based on what he has learned in the previous steps. He must then conclude inoffensively.
Why Integrate Baseline Selling into Your CRKM?
Usually, when acquiring software like Salesforce (SFDC) or Microsoft Dynamics, the basic version includes some basic sales process steps.
Too few and insufficiently detailed, these are not specific to your company. The sales process should reflect each organization's reality.
The conclusion: representatives do not follow the process.
Effective and Accurate Daily Monitoring
Although a well-defined sales process specific to your company is essential, it doesn't do much good if it isn't systematically followed, and that's what your CRM should favour.
In addition to documenting opportunities, a CRM measures their progress and forecasts subsequent steps. Integration of the detailed components of Baseline Selling allows you to follow the progress of your sales process on a daily basis and in a concrete way.
It will enable you to see precisely the status of your sales pipeline and thus facilitates funnel review.
For the sales manager, a CRM should make it easier to coach each of his/her representatives. For example, they can accurately see the progress of an opportunity or quickly identify missing information about the potential customer.
Detailed Documentation of the Entire Sales Process (Including the Tasks of Other Departments)
Baseline Selling is a sales methodology that must be superimposed on the company's own sales process. By integrating them within their CRM, it allows different departments to add internal tasks performed that are not the responsibility of representatives.
These tasks can still have an influence on the length of the sales cycle - for example, concerning price or sample requests, design, architecture and brainstorming sessions.
Although they rarely do so, companies should take the time to integrate these tasks into their CRM, as this is what allows them to have a global view of the entire sales process.
Integrate Baseline Selling with Salesforce or Microsoft Dynamics
Microsoft Dynamics allows you to program all the components of Baseline Selling, either within the opportunity window itself or by designing a process. This customization is not always easy, but the software allows it.
For Salesforce, it's more complicated. It is a certified consultant who has to do the customization - which can be quite expensive.
In both cases, there is another option. You can integrate Membrain CRM with Salesforce or Microsoft Dynamics. Membrain is designed for B2B sales and makes it easy to implement the components of Baseline Selling or create a custom sales process without the need for an external consultant.
The integration of Membrain into SFDC or Dynamics is by far the most efficient option.
An outside firm, such as Prima Ressource, has the hindsight and expertise to evaluate and develop a detailed, company-specific sales process. It will then map this complete process to your own existing CRM, integrating each step.
Integrating Baseline Selling to your CRM will give you the tools you need to track your sales process in detail.