Interview with PipelineDeals           4/12/2016

Let’s Get Real.

In this series, we interview sales tool providers and get real about the problems they’re solving and why you should care (or not).

This week I interview JP Werlin, CEO of PipelineDeals.

Nancy: I ask guests to answer the first question using what I call the “You know how…” format. Tell us, what does your solution do?

JP: You know how you get concerned that potential deals are falling through the cracks? Well, we built PipelineDeals to make sure this does not happen. This is the point where a company starts to lose business they should have won because they have too many deals with too many moving parts and things start to get missed.

For a lot of sales leaders in fast growing companies, the fear of losing a deal because of something preventable keeps them up at night. It’s just not possible to scale an effective sales process without having the right tools and infrastructure in place.

We built PipelineDeals because we weren’t able to manage our own growing customer relationships. We wanted to build a CRM that fit the needs of businesses who were growing fast and needed a real CRM to manage their sales process moving forward. We also want a CRM that was light and easy to use so that salespeople wouldn’t hate using it. That’s what really sets us apart from every other product on the market.

Our customers tell us that we’re their favorite CRM because we make it easy to do all the typical things a salesperson does in a day.

Nancy: That sounds like a problem worth solving (and a worthy solution). But let’s get real, sales and marketing organizations have a lot of challenges and they have to make choices about which to solve first. Why shouldn’t they continue with things the way they are if they’re getting by? What are the ramifications of not solving the problems you outlined?

JP: Most businesses will try that for a little while, but the truth is that once they get to a certain point in size and deal flow, there really is no way to move forward without some sort of CRM solution. Once a company starts hiring sales people and needs to get the sales team talking with other parts of the company, it becomes clear that there’s just no way to coordinate the whole team using a spreadsheet.

The other side of the equation is, “what is the right CRM solution for your team?” We’ve worked with hundreds of businesses that jump immediately into using an enterprise focused CRM only to be disappointed with the results. If you’re a small or medium-sized business, you need a CRM that is intuitive and doesn’t get in the way of your salespeople.

Solutions that make it difficult to get data into or out of the system have poor adoption and often bad data, which is a huge problem if you’re depending on your CRM to make data-driven decisions.

Nancy: What types of questions should Sales or Marketing leaders ask to decide whether solving this problem should be a high priority?

JP: The first thing that marketing, and everybody else in the company for that matter, should be asking is, “is our team on the same page?” If you are, that’s fantastic because that can be a really hard thing for teams that are growing fast and making things happen.

If the answer’s no, then it’s definitely time to look at how you can improve communication across your team. The second thing marketers and sales leaders need to be asking themselves is how can we improve on where we’re at by making it easier on our salespeople and getting better visibility into what’s happening in the sales pipeline. Sometimes, things look like they’re going really good.

You’re closing sales and making money, but you can still be leaving a lot of money on the table by not looking at how you can keep improving. I think the first question really focuses on what businesses need to survive. The second comes down to winning and really thriving in a competitive landscape.

Nancy: This question is your choice. What do you want to answer that I didn’t ask?

JP: The question I was hoping you’d ask is why shouldn’t I choose Salesforce? Let’s face it, that’s the question on everyone’s mind when picking a CRM. Unless you work in the industry or are a sales rep actively using a CRM to work a bag of business, it’s easy to miss the nuances between the different CRMs on the market.

The real reason that customers choose PipelineDeals over Salesforce, whether they’re a small business or an enterprise account, is that PipelineDeals eliminates the pain from using a CRM. What I mean by that is being a salesperson using most CRMs means having to work around all these really high powered features that have nothing to do with your job to get to the tools that you do need to use.

Managers and marketers love all the extra tools, but for a salesperson, they get in the way and they’re detrimental to the job you’re trying to do.

What I want to take care to emphasize here is that I’m not trying to position PipelineDeals as a lightweight CRM. We offer all the advanced features that marketers and managers need to understand how their teams are functioning.

What I really mean by all this is that we’ve created a CRM that is laid-out around the needs of salespeople first. Salespeople really depend on simplicity and clarity to do their jobs well and so anytime you look at providing a technological solution to them, you need to plan around their needs.

Nancy: What should people do next?

JP: If you’re ready to set your sales team up for success in the long run, go to www.pipelinedeals.com and start your free trial today. Give your sales team the tools it needs to hit its potential.