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How To Avoid The CRM Abyss


Published October 27, 2020

Written By Nathan Furr

Creative Director at Periodic. Hobbyist woodworker and musician with a love for finding, restoring, and reusing old things.

CRM’s are 100% essential and most SDR’s and Account Executives live and die in the CRM, but it’s also the place where good leads go to die.

On one hand, your CRM should basically have every possible MQL (marketing qualified lead) for your company in the database, fully fleshed out with all customer information you could ever need to start warming them up and building a relationship that’s meaningful enough to actually go into business together.

On the other hand, it’s a huge list of names, that’s usually not current. Usually, only a small percent is actually qualified. Usually, the addition of 100 contacts or even 1000 contacts per week or per month is just absurd to think that any SDR can have enough hours in the day to make a dent in that contact list.

Then when a new “hot” lead comes in from marketing through a contact form, then you have to start the process of following up to emails and calling. But you’re losing 30% of those hot leads just because they aren’t picking up the phone.

This situation has the sales team casting doubt on the marketing team and they feel like cold outreach is all they’ve got, but that isn’t really fair is it? Especially when marketing is doing a good job of getting the brand in front of the specified target audience.

The valley is real. There is too much friction between marketing and sales. Shooting a lead over the valley and hoping the sales team can grind out enough follow up to make sure your lead doesn’t fall into the CRM abyss isn’t enough.

Modern marketing is about making the connection between people in need and the person that is going to help them.

The bridge between technology and design is what eliminates the headache of logistics and helps two people have a more human experience together.

In particular websites that can transport the site visitor from consuming enough information on the site; to making the intent of purchase by filling out a contact form; to booking a meeting on the company calendar to talk to a real person.

I’m not of the philosophy that if you put out enough great content people will figure out a way to get a hold of you. I don’t believe that’s a good experience for anyone. It’s not good for you because you’re getting contacted at odd hours of the evening and you have that “oh crap” moment where you feel like you’ll lose the lead if you don’t reach out right now. But it’s also horrible timing because you’re trying to put your kids to bed. In the end, it’s not good for the customer either because now they have to wait for you to respond and they don’t have any time scheduled to start solving their problem.

So be intentional about it. Be smart. There are a lot of tools out there that will work. There are fewer out there that will work and let you white label so you can actually have it be your brand. Whatever you use, the important thing is that it just removes the friction and allows everyone to connect and be more human. Let computers do what they are good at. Let people do what only people can do.