Article | 3 min read

Sales and support: acquiring customers

By Andrew Gori

Last updated August 23, 2017


Editor’s Note: This is the first post in a four-part guest blog series from Base CRM dedicated to exploring the ways that sales and support can partner to help drive each other’s KPIs and business objectives.

Many people tend to forget that “customer acquisition” includes the ability to convert prospects already in contact with your business. If you’re like most people, your mind probably goes straight to cold calling or landing pages: tactics typically used to discover and attract brand new leads.

Completing the acquisition process requires not only an amazing sales team but the ability to provide these prospects with quality experiences. McKinsey reports that, “Optimizing the customer experience typically achieve[s] revenue growth of 5-10% . . . in just two to three years.”

It’s indisputable that two of the teams with the heaviest influence on customer experience are sales and support. So what are the strategies that sales and support can use to work better together to improve the customer experience and ultimately drive acquisition?

Focus on trial-period tickets

Does your business offer a free-trial period for your product or service? If so, this is the perfect opportunity for support: great service will have a major impact on acquisition rates.

Recent research from NewVoiceMedia estimates that US companies lose $41 billion a year due to poor customer service experiences, which is why it’s critical to provide your support team with a fast and easy way to identify tickets submitted by free-trial users with open opportunities.

Not only is this your chance to show prospects the type of world-class experience that they would receive as customers, but it also lets support reps know that now is the time to point out certain features or functionality that may only be available in the full, paid version of your offering.

Similarly, having information around tickets submitted by free-trial users available for reps to see in their CRM can make for a smoother purchasing process. Armed with the challenges a prospect had during his or her free trial, a sales rep can proactively address any concerns and elaborate on additional features that may be helpful once it’s time to buy.

Utilise a two-pronged sales process

If your product or service is a bit on the more technical side, this one’s for you. It’s not uncommon that sales reps will loop in the support team to help answer the more technical and involved questions that arise during the sales process.

This a great strategy, because not only does it allow your sales team to focus on what they do best, but it also introduces an unbiased third-party into the sales process to provide consultative support.

However, things tend to fall apart when a sales rep loses visibility into the conversations that support is having with his or her prospects. When this happens, the rep is basically left with two equally terrible options:

  1. Waste time by tracking down support and requesting a play-by-play of prospect interactions
  2. Muddle the customer experience either by missing out on these critical pieces of the sales process, or forcing the customer to play telephone between sales and support

Fortunately, integrating your sales platform and helpdesk solution can help mitigate this difficult situation by providing reps with insight into both open and closed support tickets: context, questions, conversations and even internal notes. Rather than going in blind or having to ask for a recap, reps can simply follow along with the discussion and access this information at any time during the sales process.

Better for customers, better for business

By integrating sales and support tools, companies make it possible for their customer service and sales teams to work together like never before. The ability for these teams to quickly and easily view key cross-functional data points powers truly delightful customer experiences that drive acquisition.

With our highly intuitive platforms and robust APIs, Base and Zendesk unify sales and support for joint customers–all at a lower total cost of ownership compared to other providers. Learn more about the Base and Zendesk integration.

This post was written by Rachel Serpa and originally appeared on the Base CRM blog.