Maybe you’re on the lookout for a way to increase sales or maintain client relationships in your agency. Or maybe you’ve already decided to go for a CRM tool to make this task easier and are evaluating your options. Or, hey, perhaps you’ve already joined the OnePageCRM tribe (great call, by the way) and are looking for the best way to set up your account and form your CRM strategy.
In any case, this article will give you practical, crash-tested tips on how your agency can make the most of your CRM system, and, eventually, bring in more clients.
CRM Tips: Lead generation and Lead qualification for agencies
When it comes to agency sales, sometimes you have to kiss a hundred frogs to get one more or less decent prince. So the more leads you get, the bigger the chance of an eventual sale. Some of the tips in this article will be handy for generating new leads for your agency, while others are more suitable for lead qualification. Once you have a list of relevant leads, you can start qualifying them and separate the wheat from the not so promising chaff.
Here are 11 practical tips to keep in mind if you want to grow sales for your agency:
- Use web forms with actionable submissions
- Build up your referral system (and integrate it with your CRM)
- Automate lead generation as much as you can
- Add an extra Lead status to your CRM: qualified vs. unqualified
- Split your CRM screen into two views for faster lead qualification
- Integrate your email client with CRM to send emails in bulk
- Sync up your Mailchimp and CRM accounts
- Segment and group your contact data
- Maintain strong client relationships
- Use mobile CRM apps to do sales on the go
- Adopt a new sales mindset
Below we go into more detail for each of these tips.
1. Use web forms with actionable submissions
A contact form can be both the first point of contact or the final step of your lead generation marathon. In both cases, we’re talking about solid leads, ready to make an effort. Make sure your form is compelling and to the point. Perhaps, consider offering something different, like a free consultation or a proposal. With the fierce creative competition out there, it doesn’t hurt to stand out.
When it comes to creating the forms, you’d want something simple, no-fuss, and effective. Our top pick— free Web Forms with actionable submissions. These Web Forms are integrated with OnePageCRM. We will automatically create new contacts for every incoming submission and assign a next action to them so you’ll never forget to follow up with new leads.
2. Build up a referral system (and integrate it with your CRM)
According to a study, 78% of salespeople claimed that customers who were referred were most loyal. At OnePageCRM, we’re strong believers in word-of-mouth marketing & sales. In fact, that’s how we get the majority of our leads. What’s more, these leads are the ones that have the highest conversion rate.
If you want to go broader than WOM, consider looking into referrals from upstream services. If you’re an SEO agency, look into web design agencies, PR companies, VC firms, etc. They are the ones who will have a say (and would recommend) a company to their client.
To keep track of the referred leads in your CRM, you can always customize your ‘lead source’ to ‘referral’ and make it easier for you to filter the contacts and concentrate on closing potentially most loyal prospects. You can also create a separate tag for your partners to easily identify them in your contact list.
3. Automate lead generation as much as you can
You’ve got enough bases to cover. Trade shows, networking events, referrals… So if you can automate some of your lead generation or prospecting efforts, do. With Lead Clipper, you can generate leads from anywhere on the web (including your email) with a simple click or a highlight. And the Enhance feature allows you to automatically grab and add social data to your contacts.
4. Add an extra Lead status to your CRM: qualified vs. unqualified
With the number of leads an agency gets, consider creating two contact statuses for the lead stage:
This way, you can get rid of the dead ends early in your sales cycle.
This will also help you avoid creating unnecessary and short-lived deals.
5. Split your CRM screen into two views for faster lead qualification
A quick call or an email is often all it takes to determine whether or not a lead has potential.
At OnePageCRM, we’ve introduced a split-pane view that mirrors the most popular sales tool—an email client. It makes it easy for you to quickly go through the list of your contacts and qualify them on the spot.
6. Integrate your email client with CRM to send emails in bulk
Email is one of the most powerful sales tools for an agency. So it’s only logical that your CRM system should fully integrate with it and enhance your sales process rather than hinder it.
Let’s say, you’re coming back from a successful networking event or just gave a brilliant talk and generated some killer leads. What you need to do now is to action them.
With OnePageCRM’s email templates, you can send emails in bulk straight from the app, and, best of all, you can customize (or not) each email for that personal touch!
7. Sync up your Mailchimp and CRM accounts
The great thing about Mailchimp is that it automatically creates a signup form for your mailing list and adds newly submitted emails straight to your Mailchimp account. It doesn’t really make sense to keep two contact lists, one for your email marketing and one for your CRM system, and update them separately, does it?
Something is bound to fall through the cracks.
So integrate your CRM with Mailchimp and enjoy the best of both worlds!
8. Segment and group your contact data
For example, after coming from an event, you can set the ‘lead source’ for the acquired contacts to the event’s type (say, a tradeshow) and tag them with the event’s name (CES).
This way, when you need to pull up a list of contacts from the tradeshow and start qualifying, all you need to do is run a quick filter!
9. Maintain strong client relationships
They say it’s easier to retain a client than to obtain a new one. For agencies, both can be equally challenging. With prospects, you need to earn trust and build a relationship. That can be done through consistent communication, follow-ups, and delivering on your promise.
Existing clients often bring more business to your agency than the new ones. They might need you to run another ad campaign or require long-term SEO support. But to get that business you need to be able to consistently and regularly follow up with them.
Follow-ups and the Next Action principle are at the very core of OnePageCRM. The moment you complete an action (for example, send an intro email), we push you to set the next one, so you continue to follow up with the contact until it’s closed (and well after that).
And to make your life even easier, we’ve also added a possibility for you to save the actions you use most often!
10. Use mobile CRM apps to do sales on the go
You’re at a networking event, you’ve made all these brilliant contacts… that come with not-so-brilliant business cards that you have to sieve through the moment you’re back at the office. If you remember to do so right away, of course. Postpone it for a day, and the task turns into a memory game.
If only you could add those contacts (and their corresponding background and notes) to your CRM right there and then, right?
That’s what we thought. So with OnePageCRM’s mobile apps, you can add or update contacts, add deals, call up your prospects straight from the app, and do pretty much everything you need to do to rock your sales on the go.
11. Adopt a new sales mindset
That’s a difficult one.
Ultimately, the efficiency of a CRM depends on whether or not your team is ready to change their ‘old’ ways of doing sales. In the case of OnePageCRM, it’s about embracing the Next Action method and focusing on selling rather than simply maintaining a database. It might seem different at the start, but it works. Simple as that. Just ask our clients.
“Probably the best CRM available for ease of use and, more importantly, ROI. The idea of being accountable for the next action with a prospect makes all the difference. All other systems I have tried depend on the operator. OnePageCRM makes you take the next step automatically, even if that next step is to close the process.”Steve Elliott, Owner at Thrifty Sites, Web Design Agency