8 Ways to Increase Your Sales Team’s Productivity With Automation

April 9, 2019 | Michele Wilkins

SalesAutomationBlogStudies show that salespeople spend only one-third of their typical day actually talking to prospects. The rest of their day is spent on admin-related tasks. Activities like updating a CRM or filling out their call log. Important items for sure, but items that take your sales team away from their number one priority: selling.

So, how do you give your sales team more time for prospecting while still ensuring those critical admin tasks are done? Automation.

Below are 8 tasks that your team can automate to be more productive, efficient, and proficient with their time:

Updating a CRM

For most salespeople, updating a CRM is an endless task. There’s always an additional note to file, a task to set, or worse, a new lead to be manually created. This makes updating your CRM an ideal task to automate.

Most enterprise CRM systems come with features that support automation. For example, you can set up a workflow to govern what happens after a prospect fills out a lead form on your site. One that not only alerts the appropriate sales team member about the lead but also creates a new record while pulling/populating it with the relevant information.

All done automatically.

Not only does this allow your team members to connect with prospects sooner to begin the sales process, but it also gives them the gift of not having to enter the info into the CRM manually.


Call Logging

If calling is a part of your sales process, then you most likely have a logging system in the place. It’s the best way to track output, effectiveness, and efficiency. Unfortunately, if your team is stuck manually updating their call logs, it’s going to have a negative impact on those same metrics.

In many CRMs, automating a call log is as simple as toggling a switch. Flip it. Let automation keep track of how many calls your team made that day, who they contacted, and how long those calls lasted. Free up your sales team so they can focus on smiling and dialing instead.


Email Follow-up

Don’t let your sales team waste time writing and sending manual follow up emails. Instead, build automated workflows that send follow-up emails when certain conditions are met. E.g., if a proposal or contract has been sent but the prospect has yet to respond.

A couple of emails to consider automating:

  • Reintroduction emails sent after a prospect has gone quiet
  • Nurturing and educational emails that can help guide a prospect through the sales process

Email Personalization

Speaking of email, take your automation efforts to the next level by also automating how your team personalizes their emails.

Many sales teams rely on email templates to frame their communication. However, as any salesperson will confirm, you can’t just send a templated email. There has to be a level of personalization, which means, if a salesperson is sending out 15 emails, they’ve got to take the time to personalize each and every one of them.

Enter automation.

Through automation, you can create a system that automatically pulls key personalized information into an existing email template. Items like a person’s name, company, or even reference your last meeting.

Social Media Posting

Social media is a powerful communications tool for your sales team. Its sales-oriented cousin, social selling, has reshaped the sales prospecting game. However, finding the time to effectively manage your social media profile and find content to publish on a consistent basis can be a full-time job itself, which is why you have to automate.

Through automation, your sales team can:

  • Schedule posts to drip out over a week
  • Add new posts to your queue as you’re researching the web
  • Share interesting posts with your colleagues to publish on their social media channels

In essence, your sales team can look like they’re spending hours every day on social media, when in fact, they’re only spending thirty minutes on a Monday afternoon.


Appointment Scheduling

Instead of having your team waste time writing emails back and forth to schedule a meeting, automate the process by using an email scheduling tool. Let a prospect schedule their own meeting based on a salesperson’s open availability.

Want to kick your automated appointment communication system up a notch? Use a system that also sends automated reminder emails, thank you emails, or even SMS texts.


Lead Scoring

Nothing impacts productivity more than having a solid lead scoring system. If you can score your leads accurately, you can keep your sales team focused on talking to prospects that are actively looking to buy.

The issue, manual scoring just isn’t an option. There are simply too many data points to consider to produce an automatic score, which makes automation not only ideal, but necessary.

Use an automatic system to determine the score of a lead based on behavior, demographics, firmagraphics, and proximity to purchase. Then set your sales team loose on the top priorities.


Sales Reporting

Don’t waste your (or your sales team’s time) by sticking to manual reports. Not only can manual reports take hours to create, but they’re also outdated the moment they’re finished! Every time you review a manual report, you’re looking at historical data. Useful for post mortems and impact analysis, less useful if you’re trying to make real-time decisions or providing in-the-moment coaching.

Use automation to create reports and dashboards that provide insight and accountability into your sales activities as they are in the moment. You can even automate how those reports are sent to your stakeholders.


Wrapping Up

You only have so much time in the workday. If you want your sales team to be more productive in their prospecting and close more deals, you need to ensure they have the time. Take a look at how your sales team is currently spending most of their day and look for opportunities to automate. Even the littlest shift away from a manual system can have a huge impact on productivity over the long haul.


Ready to sell more effectively? Learn more about how you can modernize your approach with this on-demand webinar.  

Posted in Selling Strategies