Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Tracking Sales Leads the New School Way

Once upon a time, tracking sales leads required marketing managers and sales representatives to use pen and paper, and then spreadsheets, to track the information they obtained and manage it. From the start of the process, the marketing manager or whomever was in charge of the process would record the name of the person to whom a sale was being pitched. From that point on, any additional contacts and their connections would need to be recorded, as well as where the lead originated. Next, spreadsheets created using an off-the-shelf software program would be used to track data and information received. From there, it was necessary to track the spreadsheets, ensuring that data was backed up regularly.

While the method of tracking sales leads throughout the sales process, using a variety of spreadsheets and databases, is still utilized by many businesses, it is becoming an antiquated method of tracking sales leads. The process of inputting information, reviewing it, ensuring it is updated, and that it is backed up can be time consuming and complicated if many people are involved in the process and there are a large number of leads to track.

To make sales lead tracking more efficient, some cloud computing services are offering sales lead tracking management applications that can enable businesses to streamline the process and make it more efficient from start to finish.  Cloud computing services are computing services that maintain application development, technical support, and infrastructure from afar so that your business does not have to worry about it. These services, including sales force automation and sales lead tracking, assist businesses in supporting their customer relationship management (CRM) strategies.

Sales lead tracking and management services supported by cloud computing may help businesses track their leads throughout the lead life cycle, from initial capture through the time when a sale is made or lost.
From the beginning of the sales cycle, cloud computing services offer ways to manage marketing campaigns to assess how they are attracting leads and how many leads the campaigns are tracking. In addition, some lead tracking systems offered by cloud computing services allow businesses to integrate Google AdWords applications into the tracking applications to ensure that search marketing efforts are carried out, tracked, and assessed seamlessly in conjunction with your other marketing endeavors. This information can be used to assess the marketing efforts and determine what channels are most effective.

Businesses may use sales lead tracking applications to automatically capture Web site leads; automated capture of these leads can be used to import the lead information into the tracking system and monitor it throughout the sales process. Marketers and sales representatives can monitor the leads after they have been generated and passed on to the sales team. The sales team can also monitor the leads to ensure the leads are being taken care of appropriately. The sales lead tracking applications can also help businesses to assess the quality of the leads they have obtained to determine what leads are the most qualified and where they should invest their time pursuing leads.

Sales leads are an integral aspect of business. Sales and revenue are generated by capturing, monitoring, and taking care of leads. Leads are the individuals or companies who can turn into sales. With many people involved in the tracking process, as well as the potential of having many leads, businesses need to make certain they maintain their lead information and stay up-to-date. Using sales lead tracking applications supported by cloud computing is the new school method of tracking leads and helping to ensure leads turn into sales.