Getting The Most Out of Your Sales Team with a CRM

1. The context

As your company scales, so does your salesforce. Whether non-existent or being bolstered, company-wide growth presents challenges to your salesforce that cannot be overcome by sheer grit and elbow grease anymore. Since you’ve found yourself diving into this usage study, chances are you’re either looking for your first CRM, or a next level CRM to replace your current non-sufficient solution. And, as you’re a savvy manager or executive looking to solve some problems and pave the wave for a new chapter of success for your team, keep reading to gain some insight on a very common but sometimes difficult hurdle to overcome. These are some concerns that have probably been on your mind as of late: 

How can a sales team avoid:

  • Crossing paths and following up with the same lead?
  • Keep track of an increasingly complex follow-up process?
  • Divide leads in a fair and equitable way?
  • No way for management to check-in and see where the sales team is at
  • No way to project the value of existing leads
  • Wasting time on low-quality leads
  • Marketing and sales always on different pages rather than working together

Many companies start out with a project management tool like Trello or Asana but quickly find that CRM’s exist for a reason — project tracking tools are not designed to keep track of chains of communication, deal-oriented tasks, and complex, multi-step pipelines with multiple stages.

Further, today’s CRMs allow many routine tasks and updates to be done automatically. Automated CRMs streamline complex pipelines and allow sales teams to be more effective by focusing their attention on the needs of their prospect rather than managing contacts.

You can move your team to an automated CRM like ActiveCampaign quickly and easily so you can start taking advantage of a modern team-oriented, integrated, and automated CRM platform.

2. The campaign and ActiveCampaign features used

Setting up user accounts

First, sign up for a [free trial]. It takes less than 3 minutes to get your account set up and no credit card information is needed.

To add the rest of your team, navigate to the top right menu in ActiveCampaign. Clicking your profile pic will display a drop down menu. Click the Users link and you’ll be able to add all the members of your sales team.

You can set up groups of users that can access the application. For instance you might have a group of ‘account managers’ who are those working with potential new customers, a group of ‘customer support’ for those team members giving support through the tool, and an ‘admin’ group, that is created by default by the tool.

Each group can be setup to have access to different rights like some of them have access the possibility of deleting or creating new lists, campaigns; some of them have limited rights on the number of contacts they can create within their account, etc.

Creating new sub-users under the same account is important because this is what allows you to work together as a team. You can assign and hand-off Deals as needed, and give Tasks to other sub-users of the same account.

Receiving & Sending emails with an IMAP or Exchange integration

Once your team starts selling utilizing ActiveCampaign, there really shouldn’t be any added processes or steps. Your team can move forward as normal, but now in a streamlined, chronicled manner. Whether in Gmail or in app, your team members will have their communications with any deal’s contact dynamically populated into your new CRM – seamlessly.

Go to My settings > Deals > Emails Accounts to set this up

The process to set it up an email client within ActiveCampaign is quite straightforward and you just have to follow the steps and enter the details you are being asked about your email account.

Once it’s done, you will see a – that will inform you that your account is correctly synced with your email account.

Setting up custom signatures for each user

Not all the emails sent from ActiveCampaign are sent in the same way. You can send regular campaigns, autoresponders, emails triggered from automations, personal emails from the CRM, just to mention a few.

The way to include a custom signature in each email differs depending on what kind of email is being sent. Here we explain how a sales team can make sure that all the triggered emails are being sent with a custom signature depending on who is the assigned sales team member to the prospect.

→ Setting up a custom signature for direct emails and emails in Deals

From My settings > Your Account > Signature, any user can configure the signature that will be attached to 1-on-1 emails – those that can be sent from each contact profile page in the top.

That setup will also determine the signature included in each one of the emails you can send from each Deal.

→ Setting up emails in automations to include custom signatures

To get a custom signature in an email included in an automation it will be somehow different since it won’t include the footer signature which you have setup per user.

One of the ways of doing it would be by using an IF/ELSE block in an automation to determine who is assigned to that Deal, and then creating a series of emails that include a specific signature:

  • Once you have created your sub-users, assign your Deals from the CRM to each one of them.

  • Then include an IF/ELSE block in your automation where you can filter who is the Deal owner that has that deal assigned to.

  • Once you have completed those steps it’s just a matter of including emails with custom signatures in each one of them in both paths of your automation. If you have several people on your team, you can setup a multilevel automation that checks who is the Deal Owner in several levels, as it can be seen in the screenshot below.

An alternative way of setting something similar would by using conditional blocks of content within each one of the emails your team is sending. For this option, each one of the contacts you have in your account will need to have something that the tool can check for to determine when to display something or not. Check out the example below and how it is using ‘dealOwnerJordan’ and ‘dealOwnerPeter’ tags.

It’s up to you which one of both ways you setup. In terms of organization it can be better to have just an automation with just a version of the same email your contacts will receive.

→Benefits of integrating with 3rd party apps like Google Calendar, Salesforce or YouCanBookMe

As you can imagine, your team does not only use ActiveCampaign, but also a bunch of other tools that make their daily tasks more manageable. Tools like shared accounts in Google Calendar, YouCanBookMe to automate the 1-1 sessions their customers can book by themselves, and many others. ActiveCampaign integrates with all of these applications so you don’t have to waste your time syncing any tool.

One way to take advantage of this feature is to automate the creation of ‘to-do tasks’ within Deals every time a new event is created directly in Google Calendar.

No matter if it’s an event created to get a reminder that they have to follow-up with a prospect, or a reminder that they have a meeting with an specific customer, etc. all of them can be created automatically in Deal once the syncing is done between both tools.

3. The output

In as little as 4 months of using the ActiveCampaign CRM, these are some new experiences that teams like yours could see:

  • Not only all the account managers have been aware of what was the status of each client, but also the CEO has been able to check it without having to ping each account manager to know about it. Just by looking into each Deal notes is enough.

  • A staple of your workflow or another app experiences downtime. This is not a big deal at all. Simply switch to an alternative integration for the time being using any of the alternatives listed in the directory of applications & integrations. Then, when that app comes back online, switch back to your established work flow – no sweat.
  • Say your product team released some new features for your tool, and your CEO decides that you need to communicate that to all of your customers. You’ve never sent a newsletter before, but they had already most of their customers within their CRM…that includes an email marketing tool, so the process of creating a newsletter and sending it was quite straightforward. Best of all – without the need of setting up a new tool!

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