Account Management Needs

  • Process Manufacturers share much in common with both Repetitive and Discreet Manufacturers.  Process Manufacturers are typically making raw ingredients or pre-cursor elements used in further manufacturing processes, so these prospects build Opportunities to track the approval of a product for a client, but then orders arrive via Call Center or EDI.
  • Account Reps for Process Manufacturers will need to create Opportunities, create Quotes and – in a new step likely send Samples to their Leads in order to get the ingredient approved for use.
  • Prospects in this segment have Account Reps that are road warriors.  An Opportunity, is typically built around a specific product (or multiple products) and may have multiple iterations as they cycle through samples and Quality Testing. The exact quantity and frequency of orders can be defined at this early stage, but may not be, as clients will continue to re-use the product over time.
  • Our Prospect’s Account Reps will strive to be on site with their clients often, but are typically ham strung in how to intelligently choose which clients to visit, and how often.  The decision about how to visit can be built on pending Opportunities, total sales volume and client support issues.
  • Like Repetitive manufacturing, our Prospect’s Account Managers are typically responsible for new Lead Generation as well.  With no data really about the Leads, it is important to be able to visualize leads close to account, so that visits can be managed. 
  • ERP Information is key to Account Management – how much of a specific product is being bought? What is the frequency? What is the volume?

How Can We Help?

  • Using base Salesforce Views we can show data regarding last visit, sales volume (assuming we are integrating with their ERP), and product mix.  
  • However, USING Salesforce MAPS, we can put this function on steroids!  Maps would be a game changer for these reps
  • Mobile experience would be key – even though most of the customers wouldn’t even think about it.  We should be talking mobile from the first conversation – start with how reps communicate trip outcomes, understanding that most of the time the answer will be “they don’t”. (see below)
  • Using base activity management and mobile experience, we can record trip outcomes, record next steps, and track basic expenses like mileage or meals.  For Prospects in our space, we shouldn’t get to technical in the beginning (Concur) so keep it simple.
  • Like Discreet Prospects, finding new products for existing customers is vital for Process Manufacturers.  For each new product, potential exists to sell new ingredients or products for the introduction.
  • For instance, if a client makes nutritional supplements, our prospects will be on the lookout for new products, hoping that their ingredients can be used in any new product.
  • Opportunity Management can also be a key component to Process Manufacturers.  Every product requires engineering or specification changes, and capturing those in an Opportunity can be key to understanding the process.  Plus, it isn’t “sales” until the customer approves the design or sample, so we need to provide a way to track that progress.

Questions to Ask

  • Are you doing ANY CRM activities?  (Tracking Calls, etc.)  IF so, how?  (CRM, Spreadsheet, Outlook).  I bet they hate it if they do!
  • How do you decide when (and who) to Visit?  Is there any data analysis when trips are scheduled?
  • How do you report meeting outcomes?  How do you communicate next steps?  Do you need other resources to help?  (Event coordinators, category managers, etc.)
  • How do you analyze Sales data?  (ERP, Spreadsheets, PDF Reports, etc.)
  • How much of your business is New Clients vs Existing Clients