Can’t my CRM do this?

That’s a great question.

A prospect recently asked me the difference between our demand generation SaaS and a wildly popular CRM. Okay, she asked me what the difference was between Prospecto™ and Sales Force™. That’s a good question for those of you who are not immersed in the world of CRMs, Demand Gen, MA, and Lead Generation every day.

Which means: you’re busy talking to people, converting prospects to clients, taking care of customers, and sending invoices. Good for you!

But if you need help having more productive conversations with new prospects, you may be wondering CRMs, Demand Gen, and all the rest are, what they can do, and how they can help you.

CRM (Customer Relationship Management) software is primarily designed to manage a company’s interaction with prospects and clients. They can also help manage marketing and customer service functions, and can sometimes compute the ROI on sales and marketing efforts. It’s in this system that you dump your established database and add to it.

Demand Generation is the targeted effort to drive awareness and stimulate buying behavior among a company’s prospects. This can involve tactics and technology from both the sales and marketing departments, which could include: email database development and marketing, Search Engine Optimization (making sure your company pops up in the Google/Bing/Jeeves search), gold standard marketing (advertising, direct mail, etc).

MA (Marketing Automation) is an automated process by which prospects are segmented based on behavior, previous buying patterns or expressed interest (where did they click), and targeted messages are sent to further narrow their interest and encourage the purchase. The ability to monitor and score electronic behavior is key in this process. It’s closely linked to the direct sales process in a company.

Lead Generation is the process through which companies find other companies or consumers who are interested in their product or service. Demand Gen and MA tools are used to do this, and then they are stored in the CRM!

So which tool is right for you? You’re going to hate this answer: Depends on what your goal is.

Goal: I need to better track my sales activities, and manage my time efficiently.
Solution: CRM (Sales Force, Sugar, Oracle, Sharepoint)

Goal: I need to provide a targeted, continuous message to my prospect database, and I’d like to know what they’re doing when they get it.
Solution: MA (Net-Results, Eloqua, Pardot, Rally Marketing)

Goal: I need to drive more people to my website, and I’d like to know what they do when they get there.
Solution: Demand Gen (Rally Prospecting, Marketo, Hubspot, and most MA tools)

Goal: I don’t know anyone, and would like to have some good conversations and nurture some in-target prospects.
Solution: Demand Gen + New Prospect On-Boarding (Rally Prospecting – you knew we’d be the only one, right?)

Rallys Prospecto™ is unique in its ability to add new prospects to your database, verify and vet those prospects specifically for you, and nurture them until they’re ready to talk to you.

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