In today’s digital world knowing your customers is more important than ever before, finding, knowing and understanding who they are and rewarding repeat customers helps to grow businesses every day.
First hand, I constantly see many businesses that have operated for 1 year to 20 years that not only don’t have an active customer database and many have nothing at all. I personally have worked with many of the top CRM’s on market and have worked on numerous projects customising them to try and meet customer needs. I have a saying with CRM’s “What you put in, is what you get out” and this is so true for no matter what system your business uses.
About a year ago I got told about “another” CRM called PipeDrive, although focused at the “Sales” component of data management, I truly believe every business sells in some way shape or form and how you track and manage that data is a vital step in any business.
So I signed up for a trial and started to use the system and loved it, I found many great uses for it, loved their flexible API (to move data around) and automate many arduous tasks, the more time I spent using it the more I really thought this system has a really exciting future.
Now with over 20 plus successful deployments in a variety of businesses from sales teams through to customising it to handle operations and scheduling roles, the system is on the outside very simple to use but in the background hugely powerful.
How does PipeDrive Work?
Ok its pretty easy, PipeDrive has what we call a pipeline, now a pipeline is columns on your screen that are each named whatever best suit you, see below example
This short video covers how to add team members, deals and contacts to PipeDrive. Watch it now or come back later and watch it.
So a pipeline is used to track the different stages of a deal/sale and it can be anything, every pipeline can be renamed, more columns added, whatever you need. So say a new website enquiry came in, I have the ability to automatically feed that website enquiry into whatever stage of the pipeline I would like, but in the above example it is named untouched contact, this would mean that no action has been taken on the lead, but it will be assigned to someone in your team. The team member will get a new notification to say a new lead has come in and needs to be actioned, that same team member can now add tasks like log calls, send emails, meetings, lunch add notes (again these are completely customisable to suit your business) and much more.
Once the team member has made contact with the lead they simply drag the deal to the next column called Contact Made this will now be displayed in the 2nd column that at a glance your team member knows exactly where they are up to with the deal.
Now each column in the pipeline can be set to a percentage chance of the deal being closed, for example, column 1 Untouched Contact might be a 20% chance of closing the deal and column 2 Contact Made might be 40% etc (again customisable/or turn it off). This percentage can now be used in forecasting potential revenue for the day/week/month, in each deal you will find two big buttons Won or Lost hitting won will add the deal value to your live dashboard (I will explain more below) giving you the total value of deals done, again for the day/week/month etc. Hitting the lost button will prompt the team member to fill out why the deal was lost, i.e. price, competitor etc (again customisable) giving you greater clarity on the businesses sales and customers.
Each deal when it is created has some standard fields likes, name, email, phone, address etc but it also has the ability for you to upload products and set the RRP along with sku’s etc and a team member can simply pick from the list of products, the RRP of this product will then become the Deal Value for reporting purposes, if that team member discounts the price from RRP this will also be a reportable change. You can easily use the system without the products function and manually add the deal value for each deal or if you are doing a marketing campaign on a specific item I even have the ability to automatically feed that enquiry into PipeDrive but also determine its value and even automatically create an activity like Call Steve Smith at 10 am tomorrow, therefore, reminding the team member constantly until they complete the task.
Mobile App – PipeDrive is not only an affordable cloud based system so no expensive servers and maintainance but its app also packs a big punch, with the ability for team members to work on the fly, make calls from the app, create voice memos that upload to the deal in seconds, take photos, sync phone and email contacts directly into PipeDrive 24/7 but best of all, everytime an action is made in the app it is logged, meaning if you click into a deal and click to call a deal it will mark that call as a completed activity or take a photo it will upload to that deal across every device.
Features of the app
- Save call logging activities to your deals
- Nearby feature let’s you know which clients are near you
- Schedule activities wherever you are, even when offline
- Take notes on your mobile device during a call or meeting
- Take a picture and store it under a deal or contact
- Make voice memos and upload it the deal or contact
- Optionally sync phone contacts into PipeDrive for easy deal creation later or updating a phone contact
- Swipe to see each column of the pipeline
The below video gives a great overview of how managers or business owners can have a clear indication of how the sales team is performing or look at revenue forecasts at any time of the day or night.
Another fantastic feature of PipeDrive and one like no other is the optional 2-way email sync that allows you to connect your team members emails directly to PipeDrive. This feature automatically checks against email, name, phone etc to connect the email automatically with the deal and keep a copy of the email in the notes section of the deal, so should a sales member have a day off, leave or any other reason anyone else can see exactly where that deal is up to and all its communication. Watch this video below to learn how it works.
About the Author
Ross Meadows is a Managing Director of Media Booth Australia and Wired Marketing Group, offering a diverse range of knowledge in the marketing, technology and digital sectors. Ross has worked in Sales and Marketing for well over a decade and is a self-taught developer and is fanatical about analytics and data.
Click Here to Contact Ross Meadows