There’s an ongoing dispute between marketers and sales which needs to come to an end. You will get...
You’re probably in the same boat as many other sales managers and sales teams when it comes to the frustrations of selling woes. Losing leads because you forgot to follow-up with them, called leads based on the order they appeared rather than checking who was the best fit and spending too long adding leads to your CRM. It’s not fun and it’s not productive.
That’s why you need to implement sales automation as it’s the best way to secure leads when used effectively.
Wait, What’s Sales Automation?
Sales automation is software that makes yours and your sales team’s lives much easier. Those problems we mentioned above? They’ll be a thing of the past if you implement a tried and tested sales automation platform.
Sales automation software takes the manual, time-consuming tasks which you and your team do on a daily basis and automates them.
So, what does this mean for you and your sales team? Well, it massively boosts efficiency as nobody has to spend hours going through documentation or even long-winded, repetitive and manual tasks. Instead, you can focus on core sales activities to improve accuracy and accelerate your entire sales process.
Sales Processes That Automation Can Simplify
The beauty of sales automation is that it can take a weight off your shoulders and focus on the sales tasks that matter the most. Some of the tasks and processes you’ll be glad to know that can be simplified with automation include:
Although sales automation helps to automate the manual and repetitive processes, you need to be smart on how and where to use it. For example, you need the right balance between sales and automation and a human touch to have the best chance of succeeding - which we’ll get on to further below.
HubSpot Sales Meeting Feature
The Benefits of Sales Automation Software
Other than actually automating sales tasks for you, investing in automation can bring you many more benefits to change the way you and your sales team function and execute strategies.
Identify Potential Customers: With sales automation software, it’s easier for your team to view and pursue the best-quality leads so that you can make much more successful conversions. This way, only the most relevant leads are being chased.
Lead Information: Sales automation helps you and your team gain more knowledge about the leads and the industry they’re in. Information like this helps you to understand the needs and requirements along with the best way to engage with them.
Easy Reporting: You can use a CRM like HubSpot to stay informed by using internal emails and reports. That means there’s no need to spend hours to keep the rest of the team in the loop as it all happens automatically.
Create Proposals: Sales automation helps you and your team generate sophisticated and detailed proposal in a matter of minutes. Just enter a sales quotation and you’re then given a brilliant proposal creation to send to leads.
Call Analysis: Sales automation software like HubSpot let you record, transcribe and analyse your sales calls. This means your team doesn’t need to waste hours going through each call, analysing it and then doing the same for the rest of the calls.
Lead Scoring: Sales automation software creates an automated lead scoring system based on the criteria that have been set. Lead scoring uses fields like demographics and behavioural data to determine just how qualified a lead is. This means you and your team know exactly which prospects to prioritise and which ones are a poor fit. For a more detailed breakdown of lead scoring, head over to this blog.
Email Templates and Automation: With sales automation software like HubSpot, you have a bank of email templates to use which means you can avoid copying and pasting messages over and over to save time. You can also send multiple emails to prospects in a row with HubSpot’s Sequences feature. If a prospect responds, the messages will stop.
All of these benefits mean you have a happier sales team that won’t be bogged down with repetitive tasks. It keeps them all more productive and you can focus solely on closing the best leads possible.
However, sales automation can also only truly work if your team is aligned with marketing, so that you’re in the best position to actually implement sales automation in the first place and the entire process can run smoothly.
How Sales Automation Can Integrate into Your Current Sales Process
If your current sales process involves a lot of calling, emailing and even visiting leads in person, communicating with them constantly leaves little time for anything else. Although, following up on a lead is vital and for you and your sales team, it can’t be overlooked.
This is where sales automation can integrate into your current sales process as the right platform can manage it all for you. A CRM system like HubSpot will allow you to make phone calls and emails directly through the system so that you don’t need to log communication elsewhere as it does it all for you.
Plus, it’s easier to get a full communication record for future reference without having to do it all manually like in your current process.
If your current sales process is showing you every single lead with you and your team wasting time by contacting half of them, then integrating sales automation will be a huge help. That’s because by automating your lead prioritisation, your team doesn’t have to worry about being pressured to follow up on every single lead.
Sales automation will be able to choose the perfect leads for your team to contact - which is where sales and marketing alignment comes in. You need to work together to decide the score each lead needs to be scored depending on the action they’ve taken, so only the best ones fall on your sales team’s desks.
Rather than wasting time contacting them all, all of the leads are ranked through the sales automation process based on their likelihood to convert. When your team goes to contact a lead, they’ll be given a clear picture of their history with the company as well as past communication so they know how to better communicate with the leads.
By integrating sales automation into your current process, you’ll be saving a lot of valuable time and only contacting the best leads all the time.
In your current sales process, it might take you a while before you even see a lead come in and even longer before you assign it to a member in your team. By the time that lead is contacted through your current process, it could be game over and it’s time to move on to the next one - even if the missed lead was perfect.
By integrating sales automation into your sales process, your CRM can begin to rotate leads instead of you having to do it yourself. Use that saved time to help close important deals, train members of your team and anything else where you’ll be safe knowing a CRM is doing all of this for you.
Although, if you do integrate sales automation into your sales process, make sure you set criteria that makes sense for your organisation rather than doing it all at random. This helps you save time, close more deals and keep your sales team productive.
We mentioned reporting earlier on in this blog, but it’s one of the biggest aspects that can be helped when you integrate sales automation into your current sales process.
HubSpot Research has found that 40 percent of sales reps still use platforms like Microsoft Word or Excel to store their lead data with 32 percent spending an hour or more on data entry each day.
Getting that valuable time back is a huge boost. Sales automation can help your team stop spending too much time generating reports and gives them more time to make sales. HubSpot’s CRM system sets up automated reports for you so that you all get a daily reminder of your progress.
Sales Automation: Finding the Right Balance
Although your dream might be to automate every sales task possible so you and your team can focus entirely on closing deals, it’s not the best way to go about things. It’s important to find the right balance between automating sales tasks that can be automated while still adding manual touch points.
Never make the mistake of trying to automate every aspect of your sales process as it’ll feel entirely robotic.
For example, if a lead is sent an email automatically, it’s not going to feature the critical and irreplaceable element of adding some humanity to sales. Leads need to know there’s a human on the other side helping them out, not a machine.
So, make sure you only automate the aspects that need to be automated. By taking a step back and occasionally adding some human touches to your sales automation process, you’re more likely to reduce errors, increase conversion rates and actually build some relationships in the process.
Yes, automation is amazing but don’t run the risk of automating the human element out of your sales process. It can be a big price to pay if, for example, an automated email has scheduled a demo with a lead and you or your team have no idea about it, then that won't reflect too well on you or the company.
To avoid losing sales productivity and actually secure those all-important leads, make sure to find the right balance of automating what you can, and utilising human touch points where you should.
Sales Automation is Just a Small Piece of the Sales Enablement Puzzle. Now Find Out More…
Lead scoring, sales automation, sales and marketing alignment - a lot of different factors combine to make up one aspect called sales enablement. It’s all about having the right tools and techniques in place so that your team can close leads and successfully engage buyers.
For a more detailed breakdown of the sales enablement process, we’ve created a comprehensive guide which covers everything you need to know. The topics range from how sales enablement actually works, how to realign sales and marketing, how technology can help and so much more.
To download your free copy, click the link below.
We're literally just adding the finishing touches now so it's very nearly ready. While you're waiting, go ahead and join our private Facebook group, Inbound After Hours. We'll be discussing all things HubSpot and that includes sales enablement.
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