CRM for Lead Generation

Updated: April 30, 2009

Lead generation is an essential technology for any business that wants to grow and prosper. As they look for lead generation applications, business owners and managers typically find themselves searching for the "perfect" program, the one tool that will help them efficiently and effectively uncover and nail down all their varying sales prospects.

The problem is that different businesses have different lead-generation needs — a solution that's a perfect fit for one company may not be ideal for another. An even bigger challenge is the fact that different parts of a business often have their own particular lead-generation needs. As a result, an app that works well at identifying Web-generated leads may not fit call center requirements.

Given these conflicting demands, the most popular CRM solution for lead generation is Salesforce.com , simply because it can work with so many different add-on lead-generation products. Here's a look at nine common lead-generation situations and the add-ons that offer the best solutions:

Businesses that Handle Low-Volume Sales Inquiries
Businesses without contact centers risk losing potential leads due to haphazard lead management. Salesforce.com's free Lead and Opportunity Management Dashboards wrap visibility around lead flow and opportunity management. The tools enable users to track lead counts, general status, ownership, source and conversion information.

Business with Inbound Call Centers
LeadByFone is a fully-hosted, speech-enabled IVR (Interactive Voice Response) solution that allows Salesforce.com users to deploy and manage the real-time capture of caller names and addresses. The product includes real-time logging of all lead information captured from callers.

B2B Web Sites
Domodomain is a Web-based tool that identifies business Web site visitors, then collects and presents relevant information to business owners, managers and sales reps. Users can identify by name the companies browsing their Web sites, including prospects, customers, competitors and analysts, in real time and without registration. The app automatically obtains detailed visitor information such as company descriptions, general contact information and specific interests.

Businesses that Advertise on Google
PageVester allows businesses to easily create landing pages, generate leads in Salesforce.com and track which leads are generated by which ads and through which keywords. When the app is combined with Salesforce for Google AdWords, users also have clear visibility of their campaigns' effectiveness.

Businesses that Make Cold Calls
Digital Marketing Manager helps a marketing team run outbound programs that generate leads, distribute sales tools to the field and measure success with aggregated metrics. The app provides a suite of tools enabling demand generation, campaign management, content management and distribution of marketing assets out to the field. The product also enables users to view the results of current marketing programs.

Businesses that Prospect at Trade Shows and Events
Validar Lead Import provides lead-capture solutions for both online and offline marketing touch points, specifically trade shows and events. Collected leads can be categorized, ranked and distributed to a sales team at any time during the event.

Direct Electronic and/or Snail Mail Marketers
Marketbright eMarketing Enterprise lets users plan and execute campaigns via email and direct mail, as well as by pay-per-click, landing pages and registrations. The app provides automated lead qualification and scoring. Users can also gain campaign insights via advanced closed-loop campaign metrics.

Businesses that Assign Leads to Partners
Lead Distribution Template helps users assign leads to appropriate partners based on certifications, geographic coverage and enrolled programs. Businesses can also measure partner lead performance metrics such as leads by partner and lead aging.

Businesses Bogged Down by Duplicate Leads
Lead Look-Alike Finder offers a simple way to locate duplicate leads on the basis of selected data fields. The app also allows users to edit any duplicate leads.

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