In a recent post, we talked about common objections that salespeople have for CRM activity entry. We talked about them because CRM only works if our salespeople are using it. The only way to overcome objections is to confront and challenge them. There was an assumption in that post — we value the data that we’re asking our salespeople to enter and can communicate it. In this article, we’ll talk about how to evaluate and articulate the value of CRM data.
But which CRM data?
CRM systems contain tons of information in the form of quotes, orders, invoices, appointments, call reports, tasks, projects, leads, and emails. That’s a lot, but we can break it down. You can think about CRM data in three ways:
These three kinds of data are distinct. Sales data magically appears when our connectors are working. Opportunity data helps us keep track of potential sales. Finally, behavioral data records the effort we put into an account to generate those opportunities and earn those sales.
Salespeople are often interested in the sales data. For most, it’s how they get paid — mortgage payments don’t make themselves, after all. It’s, as a former colleague of mine called it, “the candy in the system.”
It’s pretty easy to find interest in the opportunity data, too. Salespeople can see the value in tracking deals. So, they are willing to work with the system. A small “however” here: pushing deal entry up the sales cycle may cause resistance. When we do this, we increase accountability and take away their “bag of tricks.”
The behavioral data is the goldmine for managers and leaders, and salespeople, too. This data, though, can be tough to get. Our list of objections was, without a doubt, incomplete. But this data shows us the effort that we put into generating business. It also helps us communicate the history of an account.
Behavior data helps you tell a story
We’re all terrible at remembering things. We’re likely to recall recent, highly emotional situations better than past, ordinary encounters. Having a good, written record of our interactions helps us remember. This record is a tool for the seller, their coworkers, and sales leaders. Here are a few examples:
As you can see, behavioral data enhances communication within the organization. When well-used, it leads to better results.
Behavior data can show you the way
It’s fair to say that we’ve all deleted voicemails from cold callers. We may not remember their names or what they are trying to sell. I bet, though, that there were a few who were always in your inbox. You know it’s just a matter of time for them to go away, and you can keep hitting 3 or 7 with the best of them. You just don’t know how much time it will take for your number to fall off their list. The caller is wasting their time.
While it’s true that selling involves luck, we’re not playing with Nevada Gaming Commission approved dice. Each prospect doesn’t have the same potential for new business. If they did, we wouldn’t have targeted advertisements or inbound marketing.
Putting enough effort into a prospective account is critical. You must gather sufficient information to make a qualification decision. Behavioral CRM data helps us know when we’ve collected enough of it. Let’s go back to our example of the forever-caller. How many times would you want your outbound sellers calling and leaving a voicemail? While cheap, they have an opportunity cost — your seller could be using their time better. Without behavioral data, it’s impossible to know.
Storytelling is qualitative, while this is quantitative. Here are a few ways that we can use quantitative behavioral data to help sellers and the organization:
Communicate the value
As you think about the value that this data could have in your organization, think about how you can communicate that to your salespeople. Demonstrating the value of behavior-related data encourages salespeople to adapt their routines to CRM. As a sales leader, it’s on you to make that case.