Episode #24: When Your CRM Should Be Simple And When It Shouldn't Be

Posted by Josh Paul on Mar 26, 2019 1:05:28 PM
Josh Paul

Are you ready to jump head first into the HubSpot CRM or another new CRM?

Maybe you already took the plunge and it is not living up to your expectations.

If you think a newer, more modern CRM will make your life easier and solve your sales team’s complaints, I’m here to tell you from first-hand experience that it is not that simple.

In this post and podcast episode, I’m going to let you in on a secret that will get you to that promised land and reduce your frustration along the way.

Listen to the Full Podcast Episode in iTunes or Below

The trend in CRM and sales tool marketing right now is “simplicity.”

Simplicity is supposed to solve all of your CRM adoption, sales velocity, and reporting problems.

You’ll see ads and emails touting “The world’s easiest CRM” or “Finally, a simple CRM.”

If you came from the world of ERP-type CRMs like Salesforce, Oracle, and Infor, this message is a breath of fresh air.

After all, “I love filling out 11 fields and clicking to 4 different screens to track a next step with my leads or set up a follow-up call reminder,” said NO SALES REP EVER.

How To Avoid Getting Burned By "Simple" CRM Software

The problem with the “simple CRM” message is that it is misleading.

If you buy a CRM based on ease of use, you end up mainly living with the default settings.

My clients are often afraid to look under the hood into everything their CRM can do, for fear of complicating their sales process or going down a rabbit hole that frustrates their sales reps.

So, they stick with the out of the box settings.

Trusting that the CRM software provider’s defaults will work for your business means neglecting important parts of your lead management process configuration that make your sales team efficient and give your management team the data they need.

When you are seeking a simpler CRM, you have to understand two things... and neither of them have to do with features and functionality.

I call this the “Duality of Lead Management.”

You need to know that:

  1. In the end, your CRM and daily task flow for sales reps need to be dead simple. Period.

  2. Before your CRM can be simple for your sales reps, you need to work through the complexity that comes with the overlaying of your sales processes on your CRM, sales automation opportunities, and creating your lead management framework.

When my team first starts taking clients through the HS Sales Success program, our process for sales teams using the HubSpot CRM, I can see them get increasingly frustrated during the first workshop.

Afterall, they were promised a simple process in their CRM that makes their sales team crazy-efficient and keeps their data clean so that managers can make quick, accurate decisions.

What they are experiencing is a deep dive into their lead sources, lead tracking data, and sales process. We lay out their headache-inducing current CRM process before mapping it into their new lead management definitions and process.

It is a lot to take in.

You can hear the frustration in their voices as they worry about overwhelming the sales reps and grinding sales productivity to a halt.

Then, we reveal something that makes all of that stress disappear and puts their fears at ease.

We introduce them to the Duality of Lead Management.

We remind them that as we create their new lead management process, we need to get our hands around all of the routes leads can take, people who handle leads, and different sales steps for different markets or products.

Only then can we run those inputs through our HS Sales Success system to produce an ultra-efficient workflow for their sales team.

It is not until we help them understand those two things - (1) the end result will be a process that your sales reps use and love AND (2) the complexity of the initial workshops is necessary to reach that goal - that my clients fully understand the importance of lead management and the process they need to go through to get it right.

You can immediately see the tension leave the meeting. Their energy level jumps and their buy-in to continuing the upfront lead management deep dive is stronger than ever.

So, the question of whether you should get a simple CRM or a more complicated sales system for your company is not the right one.

Along those lines, I want you to see through the marketing messaging of the “simple CRM” platform. They don’t tell you the whole story.

The truth is that there is a time when your CRM should be simple for your sales team to use on a daily basis.

However, to get there, behind the scenes, you’ll need complex, business-specific lead management processes and automation.

Without it, your dream of a simple CRM experience that allows your sales reps to handle more leads, get into more sales conversations, and close more deals, will stay only a dream.

If you bought HubSpot’s CRM based on its brilliant ease-of-use, but you’re now dealing with the wild west of everyone using it differently and following their own process, I’d love to connect.

Comment below, reach out on LinkedIn or Facebook, or apply for a private strategy session.

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Topics: HubSpot, CRM, Lead Management