If business development is as essential to you as it is to me, you can appreciate my frustration. I would receive an introduction to someone who seemed like a valuable referral source or client. I'd schedule a meeting to "explore synergies," get to know their business, and (sometimes awkwardly) talk up my services. At the end of the meeting, they'd say something like, "This was great. Let's stay in touch, and I'll definitely keep you in mind." Then I'd never hear from them again.
While, on rare occasions, these "random acts of lunch" engendered valuable professional and personal relationships, most of them turned out to be a waste of time. I applied all the best practices. I joined networking organizations and worked on my elevator speech. I followed the mantra of "give to get." But no matter how I approached it, professional networking felt like the painful first date montage from a romantic comedy, navigating one misfit after another, waiting for lightning to strike.
So, I turned to technology. I created a spreadsheet of names and dates, and when that became unmanageable, I started using CRM. But I quickly discovered that maintaining a complicated contact database fell into the same tedious category as maintaining my insurance policies or filing my taxes. In other words, I wasn't particularly good at it, and I didn't enjoy it, which is why I procrastinated using CRM.
If any of this sounds familiar, then you're probably a fellow service provider or entrepreneur. Unlike traditional salespeople, we business developers don't spend our days making cold calls to hit sales targets displayed in CRM dashboards so we can win a cruise to Disneyland. We are in the business of building meaningful connections with peers who, in time, either become referral sources or clients. We need straightforward tools that help us navigate the nuances of relationship-building as efficiently as possible. Hence, PipelinePlus, a simple relationship management tool specifically designed to address the four critical components of business development:
- Who are your most important contacts?
- What do you need to do to advance your relationships with these people?
- When do you need to take action?
- What should you do if you get stuck?
Whether you're using the PipelinePlus mobile or desktop app, it only takes a few minutes to set up a curated list of key relationships. Our friendly alerts ensure that your business development deadlines don't fall through the cracks, and our AI provides recommendations on how to re-engage with unresponsive contacts so you don't lose momentum. We've built a library of business development tutorials into the tool so that you can stay abreast of the latest techniques for goal-setting, social media engagement, and fee negotiation. And your deadlines sync to your Outlook calendar, so your to-dos are top-of-mind.
PipelinePlus makes a profound difference when applied to a traditionally inefficient process like business development. It's easy to set up, easy to maintain and drives your focus where it is most likely to yield results. Our many case studies back this up, with reports from users worldwide who consistently track exponential ROI within a matter of months.
So why did we create PipelinePlus? Because life is busy, your time is valuable, and if you've been networking, you are missing out on the unrealized opportunities in your professional network. When you eliminate distractions and focus on authentic conversations with your most important relationships, you are far more likely to attract the clients you want. With PipelinePlus, you'll spend less time chasing new business and more time winning it.
Want more insights and news about the latest in business development innovation & technology? Visit our website.
Authored by David Ackert