Having recently started my own company, I knew at some point we’d need a CRM. And Constant Contact or MailChimp for sending emails and newsletters. Eventually we’d want an online store and accounting software behind it. And, oh yeah, we wanted the ability to create really cool landing pages, so we’d need something like Unbounce or Kissmetrics.
I priced each platform out and wished there were an easier way.
Until one day …
Enter The All-In-One CRM
After taking a webinar from Hubspot, I realized there was an easier way. And even though Hubspot was more than happy to provide it for me, my penny-pinching partner really wanted me to shop around.
It finally came down to: Hubspot, Marketo and Infusionsoft.
Enter Tip #1: DO YOUR HOMEWORK
Though any of the software platforms that made it to the final three would have worked for us, Infusionsoft worked best because it literally had everything we needed: CRM, E-Commerce, accounting, marketing automation, sales and lead generation reporting, lead scoring, landing page creation, newsletter and mailing tools, etc.
Tip #2: Think ahead, not NOW.
We ended up with a slew of items we weren’t quite ready for, but knew we’d grow into. Why have the pain of adding something later when you can have it all now?
Tip #3: Cough it up (aka: There’s no such thing as a cheap lunch with GOOD automation)
Deposits run in the thousands and then there are monthly fees. Have more than a few users? Be prepared to pay extra. Know what your budget is and don’t be shy conveying that to your sales rep. They usually have “wiggle room” to make the deal.
Tip#4: Have a plan
Most of the all-in-one CRMs come with training (called a “Success Coach with Infusionsoft). You get a limited amount of time to “train” with this person.
Don’t go in blind. Have a set plan for each training call and know want you want to achieve (i.e.: automated newsletter campaign or landing page design).
Tip #5: Set time aside
Even after your coach or training, there will be a thousand little things you didn’t learn. And it’s no secret that Infusionsoft is very robust and therefore not an overnight “read.”
Make sure you set time aside daily, or at least weekly, to learn ALL of the ins and outs of your software. Read the blog (if they have one). Infusionsoft is nice enough to have weekly webinars and other free training for customers. Sign up for those and DON’T MISS!
Tip #6: Use the Buddy System
Find someone in your circles, your entrepreneur group, or your LinkedIn Groups who uses the same system. Partner up; learn from each other and share ideas.
Picking your CRM or marketing automation software should not be a quick decision. Take your time, do your homework, know what you need and how much you’re willing to spend to get it.
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