There are constantly new innovations to sales tools. Today it’s possible to check your CRM, manage relationships with your clients, and organize trip expenses entirely through mobile apps (to learn more about the latest and greatest, read Kelly Liyakasa’s “5 Emerging Sales Productivity Tools”).
However, despite these innovations, there are several sales tools that are still necessary for any company hoping to increase sales. The following tools are ones we consider the basics:
1. CRM – It may seem obvious, but having a CRM to organize your leads and information is crucial to your company’s success. There are several leading CRM companies out there, including Salesforce, Oracle, and Microsoft Dynamics. Whomever you choose to work with, finding a CRM that works with your business model is the first step to increasing your productivity and sales. You also can’t use the nifty CRM mobile apps until you have one.
2. Dialer – We don’t mean a phone. We mean a intelligent communication technology, a powerdialer, or click-to-call. InsideSales.com, Five9, and Interactive Intelligence all offer dialers for your needs. Depending on your business model, you may choose one over the other, but having a dialer is necessary in order to start calling more of the right people at the right time.
3. Template emails – Another pretty simple one. And not too hard to figure out, especially if you are using a CRM. Template emails make it easier to reach more of your leads, faster. They also make it easy for you to create killer message content, making your emails more consistent and professional. Act-On, Hubspot, Marketo, and Eloqua all offer template emails.
4. Screen Sharing – If you want to sell your product, you’ve got to be able to do remote demos. Being able to offer a demo, instantly, while on the phone with your prospect is a powerful way to get him or her interested in your product. You can’t beat the immediacy of a screen share. GoToMeeting, iMeet, and Glance are all companies that market screen sharing.
5. Automated Proposals and E-signatures: Automating your proposal process is another simple step you can take to increase sales productivity. Consider hiring someone to create a professional proposal. Doing so will add to your company’s professionalism, as well as make the whole process more efficient. There are many proposal software companies to choose from, among them are TinderBox, Proposal Software, CallidusCloud, and Qvidian.
Another great way to speed up your sales process is through e-signatures, or electronic contracts. Instead of having to send documents to your prospects and wait for them to be returned, you can get instant approval. Docusign, EchoSign, and Sertifi all specialize in e-signatures.
6. Social Media: This final one is less a single tool and more a series of tools. Social Media (including LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, and Facebook) is one of the best ways to keep up with changes in administration or policy in your client’s company which may affect your relationship.
Social Media is also a great medium for sharing your product. To learn about how to create strong social media content, check out this article featuring 3 social media mistakes to avoid or this article about why to invest in Google+.
Did we get all of them? What other tools do you consider essential to sales productivity? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
Photo Credit: khunaspix
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