Most would agree that capturing important customer information is vital to growing and protecting their business. The harsh reality is that frequently little or sparse information of real value is captured in the CRM system.
One reason for this I believe is that most salespeople have never really been trained to understand and identify what is a valuable insight verses irrelevant details.
So, what are you doing as an organisation to improve the capture of vital customer information?
What are you doing to leverage it with impact?
Here are three areas worth investigating:
- First, review the preparation for and the content of your customer meetings. Ensure that your questions focus on identifying your customers key business objectives. This is the basis for uncovering really meaningful insights. Use this information to set mutual goals, aligning your products or services to assist achieving them.
- Train your salespeople to know exactly what is the valuable and insightful information you want entered into your CRM records. Develop their ability to identify potential business opportunities. E.g. Does the information from their meeting support what they knew previously about the customer? Or has it uncovered new directions they are taking for growth? The goal is to capture these insights that offer further opportunities to build the relationship and business together.
- Do you have an effective reporting format? Often, salespeople fall into two camps, either they create a Customer Visit Report that is perfunctory, a couple of lines with no real detail. Or alternatively, they write paragraphs of text with tedious and irrelevant details from which it is hard to extract any meaningful business insight.
So, make it easier for your team create a simple effective format that gives everyone a systematic way to capture meeting information. This could have a few headings such as: Background / Meeting Content / Objectives / Next Steps.
This format will make reporting quicker to complete, easier for you to review effectively and coach the team on their next moves.
I’d like to encourage you to review your current knowledge capture and implement these ideas so you don’t miss the vital business insights required to dramatically move your business forward.