Magazine article Marketing

Automating Systems for the UK Salesforce

Magazine article Marketing

Automating Systems for the UK Salesforce

Article excerpt

The challenges facing the salesforce are threefold. Customers are demanding faster responses -- "I'll have to come back to you" is no longer acceptable. Sales staff who can answer queries on the spot have a distinct competitive advantage.

Field salesforces are increasingly expensive. A typical field representative requires a car, mobile phone and motivating bonus schemes.

Salesforces are difficult to monitor. Often representatives play their cards close to their chests and managers have to find out what is happening.

These problems have various symptoms:

* Salesforce effectiveness is difficult to measure.

* Leads slip through the net.

* Vital customer information hides in personal organisers, on scraps of paper, or in the sales person's head.

* Business development is difficult to target.

* Your sales people are "busy", but the sales results are mediocre.

* Bonus schemes fail to encourage sales teams efforts.

How Computers Can Help

Automating your salesforce can lead to rapid improvements in:

Prospecting and Planning: Your customer base can be evaluated more efficiently using predetermined criteria and the appropriate sales resources and help you to secure "hot" prospects.

Contact Management: Information on customers can be retained and shared. This data includes customers' interests and responsibilities and what previous contact you've had in sales meetings or by mail.

Lead Tracking: Leads can be monitored through the selling process (from new lead, to sales call, to quote, to sale). …

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