Closing more business means improving your sales proposal process, and here are three ways to help make that happen:
Integrate a configure, price, quote solution into your CRM (CPQ and Dynamics for the win!)
Populate that solution with branded, vertically targeted templates (Look sharp, work smart!)
Write good RFP responses (yep: good!) with help you'll find here.
CRM & CPQ integration: Tiger Woods doesn't work on his tennis game
As you likely know, Dynamics CRM does a ton of great stuff: manages sales workflows, customer segmentation, and don't get me started on the LinkedIn Sales Navigator Application Platform (a.k.a., SNAP).
But when it comes to sales proposal automation, most B2B sales reps will tell you that they often work outside Dynamics. It's not that the system can't send proposals, but let's just say it's not a rock star in doing so. And that's ok because:
that's not Dynamics' core functionality, and
there's an app for that (CPQ).
Let your tech play to its strengths: use Dynamics to manage prospect and customer relationships, and use a CPQ application (integrated with Dynamics, of course) to create, send, and track your sales quotes.
There's a reason Tiger Woods (or, as of this moment, Dustin Johnson) doesn't work on his tennis game: he works on his strengths as that's where the ROI is.
Better be on-brand and on-point
Think of the last sales proposal you sent or received. Was there anything memorable about it, or was it more like a Word doc?
B2B sales is crazy competitive, and if that proposal didn't stand out in a crowd, it was forgotten. (And, as a great man once said in slightly different and more profane words, you can forget about coffee.)
After choosing the right CPQ for Dynamics, populate it with proposal templates that both build your brand and target the markets you serve.
Brand building in a sales proposal is primarily about having a professional look and feel. If you're like most sales people, design is not your forte, which is why a professional designer is definitely a smart investment. Spend a couple hundred dollars, get a dozen templates, and you're basically good to go:
you choose a template targeted to the vertical market of the customer,
populate it with product and pricing configurations (your CPQ vendor should be able to help set this up: we do, anyway),
and then you only need to write it, send it, and track it.
Worried about the writing part?
Today, in what we'll call The Gilded Age of Acronyms and Emojis, writing well has become a lost art. Heck, most of us can't even write good anymore. But the truth is that it's often how a proposal is written that helps close a sale.
If you're in the Dynamics business, you know that sales cycles can go months or longer. This means the prospect has plenty of time to truly dig into your proposal. They don't simply skip to the products and pricing: they take a deep dive. And if there's a typo or a grammatical error or just terrible, self-centered writing, you can bet that it will be noticed.
Help is available via this whitepaper on killer RFP responses. Because while most every sales rep is a solid communicator in person and on the phone, we could all use a little help with the written word.
Thanks for reading all the way to the end! If you have questions about adding CPQ to Dynamics, or improving RFP responses, drop me a line.
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