Before a prospective client is ready to enter your sales pipeline, it needs to be properly qualified. If not, there is a risk that your pipeline gets filled with opportunities unlikely to close, chewing up both valuable time and resources. Here to help you with this is Membrain's powerful Prospecting Campaigns.
You can set up different campaigns for different types of leads and prospects, with defined qualification criteria that need to be confirmed before the lead becomes a sales project. You can use these campaigns to segment between different lead sources (inbound, network events, outbound activities, social selling), different customer segments (product categories, new/existing business, industries) or something else completely.
This article takes you through creating a Prospecting Campaign with instructions for each step of the way. To simplify things, we suggest you break it down into 4 areas:
- Process Stage and Step Creation - guide your salespeople with a step by step process
- Adding Tools and Details to steps - tools to help carry out each step
- Adding Qualifiers, Contacts and Details - gather, identify and record additional information
- Configuring the Process - add Rules and automated events
Process Stage and Step Creation
Begin by setting up the basics of your Campaign. Map out each step of your process and break it down into stages, if necessary. Once you have a solid foundation which reflects your Campaign focus, you can then add more complex tools later on.
Administrators can create Prospecting Campaigns by going to:
- System Setup - Prospecting Campaigns
- Click on the New Prospecting Campaign at the bottom of the list
- Next, click on the header New Prospecting Campaign and give your new Campaign a descriptive name. The name should reflect the type of prospects you are looking to qualify; for example Inbound Lead or Event follow-up.
- Click on the Create Process button to start building your Prospecting Process.
Add steps and stages to a Prospecting Process to help salespeople follow a workflow built specifically for a certain type of Prospect.
- Click on the add step button
- Give the new step a name, for example "Research" or "1st phone call"
- Continue adding steps to outline your process with the individual tasks you want the sales team to follow as they're working with a prospect.
- Add additional steps between steps easily by hovering between two steps and clicking on the blue plus icon
- And rearrange the order of the steps themselves by hovering over the step you want to move until you see themove icon just above. Click on this handle and drag the step to where you want it to be, and drop it. Or if you prefer you can click into the step itself and select the Move button and choose where you want it to be moved to
Wait steps are unique to the Prospecting Process, and allow you to add cadence to your campaign. Adding a delay between steps can help your salespeople get the timing right, guiding them on when they should hold off while ensuring that they keep the momentum up and don't let a Prospect go too long without the next activity being carried out.
- click into the step you want to wait before you get to it
- add the wait time in days
- click save
A Prospecting process can work perfectly well with just one Stage, but if you want to break it up into 2 or more Stages, that works too. Stages can be used for lots of different scenarios, for example, to help identify when a Prospect has passed an important milestone and should perhaps be managed differently. Stages can also be used in place of Categories which are no longer available in Prospecting.
To add a Stage to your Process:
- Click Add Stage, which is always found at the end of the process editor.
- Name your Stage, add a description for your team about what the objective of this stage is, and if you have any relevant sales enablement material to upload or choose from within the Content Hub, add it here.
Adding Tools and details to Steps
Once you're happy with the steps you've added to your Campaign, you can add lots of functionality to these steps, such as email templates, call steps or even playbooks or scorecards. Learn how to do this in this separate article which covers how to Add tools and details to steps
Adding Qualifiers, Contacts and Details
Qualifiers are a great way to filter out the prospects that might not be worth pursuing and to pinpoint the ones that have potential, based on certain criteria (eg. industry type, budget, pain points, etc). Once you have determined what your ideal customer should look like, you can build your qualifying questions and add them to the Prospecting Campaign, to be answered during the course of the prospect life cycle. These Qualifiers then guide your team on whether to convert or disqualify the prospect, based on the answers to those questions.
You can read lots about Qualifiers here, but here's a quick step by step guide to get started with Qualifiers for Prospecting.
- From the process editor, navigate to the left hand side and under Qualifiers, click Add Qualifier
- Choose a custom field to base this question on. A custom field is a list in Membrain that contains information about a certain subject.
For example: if you wish to target prospects from a certain industry, you can select certain industries which would qualify this prospect and other industries that would disqualify. Or if you want to add a new custom field and record new information to use as a qualifier, click on the New Custom field link at the top of the window.
- Next, determine the rules you want to apply to this qualifier. Whats a positive choice, and whats potentially concerning. A simple example would be as follows.
For the Qualified If section: In the All Box, you see all the options available. Move the ones you wish to be a positive option across to the Selected Box
Leave Disqualified If section blank.
- Use the Qualified If or Disqualified If options to get creative and really break down exactly how you would like this qualifier to work, with combinations of any selected, any 2 of selected etc
- Set the importance of this Qualifier. Select if you want this Qualifier to show in the process as Blue, Yellow or Red, depending on the seriousness of this Qualifier.
The Stakeholders in your Prospecting Campaign are the important Contacts you're working with, who have been assigned a Role like Decision Maker, Validator etc. Adding Stakeholders and their Roles is done from the contacts area of the Prospecting Campaign, to the right.
By defining Stakeholders you want to be identified during the Prospecting Campaign, you can guide your salespeople to ensure they identify the important people for the Prospect you're working with, every time.
Learn more about adding Roles and defining Stakeholders
Details in Prospecting Campaigns is a great way to record important information about a prospect as you work your way through the Campaign. Information such as Urgency, Budget, Pain Points, etc can help you to get a full picture of where the Customer is in terms of suitability or readiness to move forward.
Information captured here is not necessarily a show stopper in terms of if they will enter your pipeline as a sales project or not, that's what Qualifiers do. But this information is still very important and should be captured nonetheless.
Details are created as Custom Fields in the Prospecting Campaign and found on the right-hand side of the Campaign editor. Learn more about Custom Fields here.
Configuring the Process
Membrain has the capability to respond to events with automated actions and greatly simplify the workflow for both sales management and the sales team. These events can be used to notify somebody that they have been assigned a new lead through email, or to create a task for somebody to follow up within a certain time frame or similar.
To learn more about events, read the article about Automated Events.
As with sales projects you can add rules to your prospecting campaign. These rules will help salespeople prioritize where they should spend their time, and which prospects to engage with.
Rules can be set on things such as Time to First Activity, useful for inbound or automatically generated leads, or Number of Days Since a Process Step was Last Completed. For more information, read the article about Rules in Membrain.
Adding Disqualify Reasons
Disqualify reasons are a listing of all the reasons why you might disqualify a prospect and a great way to record and analyze this data in the future. As disqualify reasons can be used across multiple Campaigns, they are not set up in the individual setup for each campaign, but rather added at Admin level.
To learn more about how to create Disqualify Reasons, read this article here Disqualify Reasons
Publishing the Process
Once you're happy with your new Prospecting Campaign, click on the Publish Campaign button to the right. You can always change your campaign at any time by going back into the Campaign editor and changing qualifiers, categories, rules, and events.
Categories have been sunsetted as a feature, and will no longer be available to add to new prospecting campaigns. But don't fret, if you had categories in any older prospecting campaigns, they will still be available to you.