I’ve never lost a contact. True story. Maybe it was a compulsion at first. Backing up my contact list started with a printed piece of paper, evolved to spreadsheets and then...Google Contacts...my savior. When I say never, it’s really from age 13 onward. Through the evolution of Palm Pilots, the Razor & Blackberries backing up contacts was generally a tedious and manual process.
A few years ago, in a previous job, it was my responsibility to maintain a “Customer Relationship Manager” (CRM), which was a horribly complex, user-scary, piece of software (built in the 90's) that stored poorly structured customer and prospect data. In order to keep information up to date, our team had to manually update records in 3 spreadsheets in addition to the CRM. Whenever someone needed contact information from the CRM, they had to wait 5-10 minutes for the software to load, wait for long search times and then copy & paste the email address to their email client.
Fast forward to life in the cloud
There’s a better way to organize, communicate and connect. History has made me appreciate the cloud. Access to data anywhere, anytime on any device is a game-changer! In my professional life, the two most important things to me are my colleagues and clients. I want, no, I expect to easily search and access key information fast! The hour glass is not my friend when business is happening. What’s that saying? Time = money? Not only is that true for myself, its more true for clients. Salespeople aren’t under pressure compared to a client with an approaching deadline for a solution.
Educated clients expect intelligent responses to questions fast! How does a salesperson keep up with the always increasing expectations of an engaged client?
Organization, communication and connection
Choose tools that give you access to your most vital needs - email, calendar, contacts, files, notes. When should these tools be available? Always. Where? Tablet, phone, laptop, computer. Location? Earth.
Google Apps for Business is built for the web and mobile. Email, Calendars, Contacts, Video Conferencing and Files are automatically synchronized across all devices you own. Communicate effortlessly. Blur the lines of reality with ‘face-to-face’ communication through Hangouts. Email and schedule from your phone, tablet or any computer. Stay organized. Google Drive and Quickoffice allow for mobile editing of Google and Microsoft Office file types in the browser or on a mobile device. No more excuses for, “that file is on my work computer” (sorry, we know it was convenient while it lasted).
Zoho CRM - clean, rich, cloud, automated - what else can you ask for? Just received a call from that guy you talked to 6 months ago who wasn’t ready to buy? Quickly visit zoho.com/crm or your Zoho mobile app - search by name, company or key word and instantly have access to all of your prior notes, activities, emails, call logs and reports. Be connected. Sound confident knowing you have access to critical information from the past.
This is how salespeople succeed leveraging the cloud. Organization, communication and connection. When the right content, resources, people and information is shared fast and effortlessly, your client is able to do their job. This gives you a strategic advantage over your competition...whose software still hasn’t loaded on their Desktop...
If you would like to dicuss cloud solutions for your company, please reach out to me.
Bio: Andrew Johnston is Director of Business Development at Cloudbakers. His business passion is selling solutions that add value to companies and enable their employees to work more efficiently. Follow him on G+.