What You Need to Know to Set Up Your CRM

This is the blog transcript of our video “What You Need to Know to Set Up Your CRM”. If you’d like to see more of our videos, you can subscribe to our YouTube channel here.

One of the questions that I’m most frequently asked when I start talking to someone who’s trying to make a decision on their CRM isn’t “what should I be looking for?” 

The question that I get most often is “what do I need to know to set up my CRM?”

Hey everyone, I’m Ian Campbell, CEO of Mission Suite. Before we jump into today’s video, do me a favor and hit the subscribe button and ring the bell so that you’re notified whenever we post new videos.

After over 10 years of helping clients get their Mission Suite accounts up and running, I’ve worked on hundreds of account setups and with the amount of information available on the Internet these days (a lot of it, hopefully provided by Mission Suite), by the time my clients are talking to me about their CRM, they usually know what they’re looking for.

What is always a question, whether they’re new to CRM or moving from a different one, is what they need to know to help them make a smooth transition into a new CRM.

So I thought I’d put together the top things that I recommend my clients have ready before they get signed up for their new CRM platform!

First, know who’s going to be using the CRM, and what permissions they need.

This is a big deal – and it’s something that’s probably going to help you make a decision on which CRM to use, too.

With a CRM platform like Mission Suite, there’s no additional charge to add new users so you can add as many of them as you’d like without having to worry about driving up the cost.

That’s a great thing for most businesses, but with that comes the question – who really needs access to your CRM?

As a matter of security, or maybe just to prevent any accidental issues, you don’t necessarily want people to have access to your CRM if they don’t actually need it. That can lead to all sorts of issues that you’re better off avoiding. 

And even the people who do need access to your CRM probably don’t need full access. I’m sure that there are people working with you who you probably don’t want to have the ability to delete contacts or remove user access.

This is something that can be crucially important to know before you get your account set up. 

I can’t speak to other platforms, but I know that “who else do you want to give access to your account?” is the first question that we ask when we’re doing a facilitated setup with one of our clients.

We actually have a User Access Guide spreadsheet that helps our clients decide what permissions their users should have. There’s a link in the description below where you can go and download it to help you make these decisions too!

Second, know how you want to segment your database.

Segmenting your database is a great way to make sure that you’re focusing your efforts – be they sales or marketing – to the right group of people.

More often than not, segments like Clients, Prospects, and Newsletter are the standards, but there are a lot of ways you might be able to segment your list.

A few things to consider when you’re deciding how to segment your database are these:

1 – Do you have sales people with specific territories? 

If you have multiple sales people who aren’t simply working from a “community” list, then that’s one type of segmentation you’re going to want to implement. Doing so will prevent Tom from overlapping leads with or pulling leads from Sarah’s list.

It will also help keep your sales people focused. I’ve found that sales people have the tendency to be curious by nature. That’s great for exploring the opportunities that are in front of them, but it can also lead to a wandering eye and a tendency to wonder “what’s going on over there?”. 

If you can avoid that by segmenting your list, then that will be all the better.

2 – Are you going to be setting up automation for different people using your CRM? 

This is something that may only matter if you’re choosing a CRM with automation, but if you want each individual sales person to have their own automation set up for outreach, follow up, and things like that, then you’re probably going to need to create segments for each sales person.

3 – Do you communicate differently or brand yourself differently for different target industries?

For example, Mission Suite works with business owners and sales teams, but we also work with touring musicians. The way that I’ll talk to a business owner or a sales team is VERY different than the way I’d talk to a touring musician. I want to make sure that there’s no overlap where one might get a communication that’s intended for the other, so I’m going to make sure that those two groups of people are well segmented.

Third, know what activities you want to track.

If you’re working with a good CRM platform, you’re going to be able to customize the different types of activities that you want to track – things like phone calls, voicemails, meetings, proposals, etc.

When you’re getting ready to set up a new CRM, think about what those activities are going to be.

What’s important for you to be able to review when looking at the history of your interaction with a contact? 

Do you want to know about every networking meeting separately from a qualifying meeting separately from a lunch meeting? Or will it suffice to know that you had a meeting with that person and, in the notes you can go into more detail.

What types of activities do you need to remind yourself of – and how specific do they need to be?

Do you need to get a reminder titled “Write Proposal”? Or is “Follow Up” with the write proposal detail in the notes good enough?

As you’re going through this process, remember that it’s really easy to get lost in creating a bunch of different types of activities that never actually get used and, as a result, are just clutter to you or your sales people. 

It’s important to make sure that you have as many activity types as you need but no more.

The last thing you want to do is confuse yourself or anyone else using your CRM and end up with inconsistent data from a tracking and reporting perspective.

What are the most activities that you track on a day to day basis? Regardless of whether you’re using a CRM to track them, I’m sure that you do track certain activities more diligently than others – what are they?

And now, on to the rest of the things that you need to know to set up your CRM.

Fourth, know your sales process.

Again, any good CRM will let you customize the sales process you build into it. They all have standard sales stages, typically something to the effect of qualified lead, discovery, proposal, negotiation, closed won, and closed lost.

But a lot of businesses either don’t use that lingo to describe their process, have more or fewer stages in their process, or have a completely different way that they want to use that capability.

If you know what your sales process is, that will help you and whoever you’re working with to get your CRM up and running make this specific to you, which will increase the odds of it actually being used (and useful) to your team.

Finally, know what fields you want to set up.

The question of custom fields can be one of the most challenging questions of the setup process. Mostly because a lot of people don’t understand why they would use fields beyond the basics anyway.

Think about your suspect questions and qualifying questions, and whether or not you need that information stored in the contact record.

For example, if your perfect suspect is someone in manufacturing that makes 5 million in revenue and has 100 employees, then industry, revenue, and employee count are going to be fields that you need to make sure are built into your system.

If one of your qualifying questions is “are you currently using an on site server or a cloud server?”, then you probably want that as a field in your contact record as well.

Having these things set up as custom fields in your system will help you find the contacts that are in your database who meet specific criteria and will help you build your lead list or call list that much faster.

As a bonus, custom fields can be great training tools to teach a new sales person what questions they need to answer at each stage of the sales process. 

What’s Next

So that’s it, the five most important things you need to know to prepare to set up your CRM.

I mentioned the User Access Guide Spreadsheet earlier, but we also created a CRM Implementation Guide that will help you get your CRM setup, whether you’re using Mission Suite or not. 

There are links to access both in the description below so check them out!

Hey I hope you got something out of this video. And if you did, go ahead and give it a thumbs up and maybe a share so that others can see it too. Also, don’t forget to subscribe to our channel and ring the bell so that you’re notified whenever we post new videos and while you’re at it, check out these videos too!

We’ll see you next time around!

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