Whether you’re in customer service, relationship management, lead generation, or straight-up sales, you don’t have to read between the lines of your job description to understand that you’re under a great deal of pressure. Simply put, time is money. How you spend your time each day directly translates to how your success is measured. It’s black and white. I believe Yoda said it best when he said, “Do or do not, there is no try.” That’s why staying organized is key to maximizing what you can achieve, both personally and professionally.
Here are 5 apps to help you never drop the ball on sales communication.
OmniFocus is visually pleasing and intuitive from the very first time you use it. That means it is easy to prioritize, giving you an immediate sense of what tasks you need to complete each day.
With a desktop app, a phone app, and even an app for your AppleWatch, OmniFocus automatically organizes your tasks as “past due,” “today,” and “soon,” while showing you how many tasks you’ve flagged as “important” or added to your Omni Inbox.
As if that wasn’t enough, OmniFocus also allows you to set tasks as due by a particular time and date, or by location. This increased functionality allows you to drag and drop your email into a new task, setting a reminder to follow up on an important conversation. But it doesn’t end there—OmniFocus can also be set to sense your location and pull up tasks related to wherever you are. It can, for example, track your arrival at that important sales meeting and jump right in to remind you of key talking points to hit, documents you need to get signed, or even just the names of the people you’re about to meet with.
One of the number one rules of sales is to be an active listener, with active being the operative word. Trainers, after hassling you and reminding you, will stare at you with disappointment if you’re absentmindedly typing notes while on an important call with a hot lead. It’s hard to actively address needs and concerns while you’re tapping away. So, if you’re like me, you take the less disruptive approach to making sure you remember key points of what your lead is telling you—writing notes by hand. That’s why I like Penultimate.
Penultimate, with a stylus like the Jot Script 2 pen, allows you to scribble notes on your iPad. You write notes as normal, and the app transcribes your scribbles and doodles directly into readable, searchable content whether you’re at your desk or on the go.
Penultimate syncs readily and easily with Evernote, extending its functionality. For example, if you’re networking at an event, you can snap a photo of a business card or scribble some notes about someone you’ve recently met, then share your new found info with just the click of a button. Penultimate will do the work to translate the written name and contact information for you, funneling it into your Evernote database, while keeping a photo copy of the business card you just snapped.
This app can also work as a networking lifesaver. You’ve likely had one of those moments where you look across the room and you see a familiar face look up, nod, and start heading toward you with a sure intent of talking to you—but you just can’t remember their name to save your life! That’s where Evernote’s elephant of a brain does the work for you. Maybe you just remember, “This guy has 5 kids.” That’s good enough. Type “5 kids” into search and viola, there are your results. Penultimate will translate your scrawls, and Evernote will help spark your memory when things get caught at the tip of your tongue.
This is one of my all time favorite apps! Boomerang plugs right in to your Gmail account, allowing you to send an email at a scheduled time and date, schedule a repeating email, and most importantly, schedule an email to arrive back at the top of your inbox at a set time if no one responds to the thread. There is no better way to help achieve inbox zero. Rid your inbox of all those conversations you’re afraid will die down, and instead, with the click of a button, instruct Boomerang: “Remind me in X hours/days if no one responds.” That way, you can stay on top of leads who need some prodding, without clogging up your inbox.
Want to have a similar kind of functionality directly in Outlook or Mail? A fancy new app from HubSpot, called Sidekick, will tell you the moment someone reads your email. As a new app, it can’t yet set your email reminders, but you can make a fast habit of reviewing your email opens and statistics at a set time each day. This will make it much easier to follow up with that one sales lead that seems to be ignoring your calls (but who is quite obviously sitting at their inbox at all hours of the day).
If your sales team uses SalesForce, you probably already know about the SalesForce app and all the functionality behind it. But are you up to date on SalesForce Chatter? SalesForce Chatter allows your sales team to connect and easily collaborate on sales opportunities, service cases, campaigns, and projects by viewing their custom actions, uploading relevant files, reviewing data, or just chatting about an upcoming sales presentation.
Why invest in expensive webinar software when you can hangout, share screens, present, and even record live with Google Hangouts? With Hangouts, you can easily collaborate with team members, record a quick webinar for a customer, or invite a sales lead for a one-on-one presentation—directly from your phone or computer. As if that isn’t enticing enough, it’s free! Plus, as Google grows, their integration gets better and better, so if you’re looking for an app that works easily with other Google products (Docs, Sheets, etc.), Hangouts is the app for you.
And remember, these 5 apps are just a start! There are hundreds more out there that offer unique benefits that can help you boost the way you manage your sales lead information. Do you have any favorites? Have you tried any of those listed here? Let us know in the comments!