Many small businesses purchase a Customer Relation Management (CRM) application to manage their sales pipeline and customer information. My experience is that in most cases SharePoint’s out of the box capabilities can be used for this purpose thus neither incurring separate fees for a third party CRM application nor needing to learn and enter data in a separate system(s). There are third party CRM SharePoint applications that can be used if the out of the box capabilities are not sufficient and these can be found in the SharePoint Store. These SharePoint apps are generally less expensive than stand alone CRMs.
There are 5 primary tactics PRA uses to generates sales leads:
- Physician referrals – meaning an existing PRA physician customer refers another physician practice.
- Business Networking through BNI groups and professional associations.
- Direct Sales where a sales person visits a physician office.
- Direct Mail campaigns.
- Seminars and webinars.
In other blogs we discuss in detail how these tactics are supported in SharePoint. Right now let’s take a look at how business networking activities are recorded. (The data is fictitious in the screen shots and use your browser’s Zoom function if necessary to better view the shots.)
A parent list web page (meaning there is a sub list related to it) is set up that is divided into two sections. The top section is for network group meeting summaries. These are Word documents prepared by the staff person attending the meeting and summarizing what occurred.
The bottom section of the web page captures the networking group, the staff person(s) related to that group and the contacts associated with both the group and staff person(s). The contacts email, title and phone # are also included. These are all the fields that PRA finds important about the networking group. SharePoint Lists allow you to include and name as many fields as you find necessary.
There is Contact Activities list page (the sub list) that tracks the activities related to each individual network contact. The contact activity undertaken, next activity to be undertaken and the associated dates are included in this list.
PRA is able to conveniently keep track all of it sales networking activities in one place. Staff and management can easily go to one locations to keep up to date on these activities. Alerts can be sent to staff personnel if there is a particular action item for them to undertake.