2011 was my best year of domain sales ever, and even though this still represents less than 50% of my Domaining income, it’s becoming more meaningful by the day. Along with selling some great domains to end-users like one of the largest diamond companies in the world, Google, and an innovative new software company I also acquired several hundred one, two, and three-word .COMs which means – more offers!
Initially I was storing all of my end-user leads in an Excel spreadsheet. Before I knew it this spreadsheet had ten columns and was quickly becoming difficult to manage. So I turned to the top CRM solution on the planet – Salesforce.com, and honestly found that this only added complexity. If you’ve ever used SalesForce before then you know it feels like software from 10 years ago that has added more and more features added over time. There’s a steep learning curve and I found the interface to be anything but elegant.
I don’t mean to trash SalesForce.com here, still a great company and I know many people that know and love the software, I’m just not one of them. So this year I pledged to find a new CRM tool and started to ask around. One of the top tools that was recommended to me was Highrise by 37 Signals, makers of Basecamp. It took only five minutes of using the tool to realize – this is what I had been looking for!
So why use a CRM tool?
Well there are two ways in which I deal with end-users, I am either going to them, or they are coming to me. I’ve used the Estibot Lead Generation tool for years to generate solid lists of potential buyers and now when I generate this list, I add the contacts into Highrise. I can then easily keep track of when I contacted someone, if they got back to me, and the offer that they made.
On the flip-side, when I am contacted by an end-user about a domain name I add them to Highrise and can track when they contacted me, what they wanted to use the domain for, as well as research I’ve done about the buyer.
When you’re selling a domain name to an end-user it is important to understand who you’re selling to. If I’m selling to a small mom-and-pop business in the Midwest, money is going to mean a whole different thing to them than a big company. I can keep track of all the research I’ve done and reference it quickly and easily in Highrise.
While you do have to spend the time loading contacts into the system, once they’re in, adding information and updating status is simple. HighriseHQ also has a nifty iPhone app so I can reference this information on the go, which is really useful when I get a call from someone I’ve been negotiating a deal with.
So if you’re in the end-user sales world and looking to get more organized I highly recommend HighriseHQ. Oh and this is not a sponsored post, this is a tool that I myself use and has already gone a long way to optimize my end-user sales process. Now stop reading this post and go close some deals!