What is a CRM?

A customer relationship management tool keeps all your contacts and the relationships with that contact in place.

This is used for managing customers, leads, colleagues, network contacts and so forth.

For a long time I didn’t use one, because I basically used my email inbox to manage my contacts. But that quickly became cumbersome and not ideal especially the more mature my business became.

I then shifted from my inbox to my email marketing provider, Drip, to manage my contacts through tagging and segmentation.

But then I had to switch from that as well.

Focus on the contact

The reason I had to switch was really based on the need to keep in touch with a single contact.

Drip and even my inbox was easy enough for leads and clients, but not for my colleagues and those that I wanted to be sure to keep in touch with over the year.

Due to the fact that my relationship with leads and clients are mostly a linear relationship, but colleagues and other contacts can become complex and evolve, I needed a system that is flexible enough to evolve with those relationships.

I use Pipedrive as my CRM.

Growing relationships

It allows for the growth of the relationships of leads and customers.

You’ve heard me so many times talk about the sales process and buyer’s journey on this podcast. Having a proper CRM allows for you to nurture the individual through each of the stages of the process.

By keeping tracking of emails, calls, and even in some cases social media posts, a CRM tool will retain all the information of that relationship you have without you having to keep those things in mind.

Opportunities

A CRM allows you to be to identify opportunities for your business and your clients as well.

What I mean by this is you can see a certain pattern of questions, objections, or reasons why a lead doesn’t sign on the dotted line. Performing a report on these can spark ideas and even opportunities for you that you wouldn’t have otherwise seen.

Pipedrive’s core is activity based selling. Which means that deals and contacts alike are all based around activities. When you create an email with a client, Pipedrive will then prompt you for the next activity and when.

At that point, you don’t have to worry remembering what that is until it’s that time again. It removes the clutter in your head.

Helps you with your numbers

Numbers don’t lie. Your cashflow is key to your business and if you don’t know how many people you need to talk to today in order to hit your revenue goals for the quarter or year, you’ll no doubt be reactionary and looking at lagging indicators of your business which is no way to run a successful business.

Pipedrive is so customizable, that you can set up the stages of your sales process and put goals on each of them. Then you can see how many deals come through to each stage and get that conversion rate for the next stage.

These conversion rates give you a much more precise insight into your business and an understanding of what you need to do to reach those revenue goals and profits.

I highly recommend you start using a CRM, whether it’s a spreadsheet and you move contacts around in cells or a proper CRM like Pipedrive.

By the way, this link above is an affiliate link, which means that I earn a commission if you do end up purchasing this product. It’s at no extra cost to you, and please if you have any questions related to this product, please let me know and I’d be happy to answer them for you.

If you’d like a quick demo about how this product, I can help you and share what it’s like.

As Chris Ducker, founder of Youprenuer and 2-time best selling author says “Business is about the P-2-P relationships; the people to people relationships you build.”

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Running your freelance business

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