Blog Series Part 2: CRM solutions for sales representatives

This three-part blog series is brought to you by Riva and Intelestream. Riva and Intelestream are both proud sponsors of SugarCon 2017 in San Francisco, September 25-28. We hope to see you there!

This blog is courtesy of Intelestream and originally appeared on their blog.

By Jennifer Karpus-Romain

What do sales reps care about? They care about increasing sales, improving win rates, working more efficiently, getting access to insights and metrics that help them do their jobs better, and earning more commission. Customer relationship management (CRM) systems help sales reps excel in all of these areas.

Whether a company has a simple out-of-the-box solution or an advanced CRM implementation with third-party plugins to deliver all of the features they need, CRM systems provide an effective way to unify customer data and allow teams to work more efficiently.

Both Intelestream and Riva develop solutions that can be incorporated into your CRM platform. Get the most from your CRM system by customizing it to meet your needs and by adding Intelestream and Riva solutions to drive additional ROI and value.

Below are some of the key benefits that CRM provides for sales reps.

Organize data

As a sales rep, you connect with people every day. You check in with accounts, reach out to leads, and follow up on opportunities. If you have information stored in separate places (e.g., Outlook, Excel, a notebook) it’s confusing and it’s easy to drop the ball.

With a CRM system, you can store all of your account, lead and customer data in one place (e.g., contact details, meeting notes, opportunities, previous purchases, support tickets, associated campaigns, and more). If you want to track any custom customer data, CRM software is highly configurable and you can easily add in custom fields for accounts and contacts in CRM.

Connect from any device

One of the most important benefits of CRM solutions is that sales reps can create, edit, and view customer data from any device. Sales reps can access CRM data from the web (on Windows and Mac laptops and desktops), from their preferred tablet (iPhone or an Android device), or smartphone (iPhone, Android, and others). Likewise, if the sales rep uses a virtual desktop that runs on Citrix or Windows Terminal Server, customer data is only a click away.

Integrate marketing and sales

With a Total CRM platform you can bring together your marketing automation (MA) and sales force automation (SFA) applications.

Marketing automation and sales force automation platforms are specialized tools within a CRM solution. While both tools offer great support for your team, they are limited in the insights they can deliver.

As standalone systems, their value is directly dependent on the company’s use case. Although you could get by with just a marketing or a sales force program, you would always be missing essential pieces of customer data that you need to gain broader insights.

Together, SFA and MA tools bring a unified view of customer and sales data. When you integrate this data into a CRM solution, the value of each improves exponentially. When your SFA and MA initiatives are within your current CRM software, these mature, powerful tools — such as Marketo, Pardot, Act-On, and HubSpot — expand the capabilities and benefits of CRM. It becomes Total CRM.

Use CRM integrations and plug-ins

By integrating your CRM with other key business applications (e.g., email collaboration, cloud storage, ticket tracking software, and others), you will benefit from the added productivity of CRM plus the convenience and time savings of being able to access other applications that are important to you.

For instance, you can integrate RingCentral, a leading cloud-based phone system, directly into your CRM workflow, which will improve your productivity. Click-to-dial functionality makes it simple to instantly call any number in your CRM database. Incoming calls are automatically matched with existing records, displaying relevant details instantly.

Riva connects CRM systems directly to Office 365, Exchange, Gmail, IBM Notes, and GroupWise. If you find that the free Outlook plug-in offered by your CRM doesn’t provide the features, reliability, or performance you expect, Riva is a great solution to have your CRM toolkit. Riva is trusted by over 125,000 users globally and our customer service is second to none. Riva also bridges the gap between your CRM and Marketo, one of the leading marketing automation platforms that you can use for lead scoring and lead nurturing to drive productivity and increase sales.

Riva Insight brings relevant, context-aware customer data from CRM, InsideView, and TrustSphere directly into Outlook and IBM Notes. Riva Insight is a powerful complement to Riva’s sync solutions that increases sales productivity and allows reps to sell smarter.

Are you interested in learning how CRM systems help your IT department? Stay tuned! For information about sales managers, read here.