***Update September 2018*** Trello is an awesome tool, but you can also use this same process using boards in Asana and Teamwork PM as well.
- Let’s start creating our sales pipeline by creating our free Trello account. Click here to go to Trello’s site. In the upper right-hand corner you’ll see a Sign-Up button, click it.
- Fill out the sign-up form, check the box at the bottom to agree to their ToS and PP, then hit the Create New Account button.
- Before doing anything on Trello, go to your email, and you should receive an email from Trello titled “Trello Account Confirmation.” Open it and click the button labeled “Verify Address.”
- Now you should see a screen that looks like this:
- For now we are going to skip the tutorial as I’ll be covering most of the information in this post; however, feel free to pause here and go through it if you want to read about their features.
- Click “Create new board…”. For this example, we’re going to name it “Sales Pipeline.”
- Now you’ll see your “Board,” which is the page where we will build our sales pipeline. On the right you’ll see a menu:
- As you can see you can change the Background color to be whatever color you want. For simplicity in this guide, we’ll be leaving it blue.
- We don’t need to worry about the rest of the features on the menu, for now, so we can click the “X” in the upper right-hand corner of the menu to minimize it.
- Next, we need to add our lists. Our lists are effectively our categories in Trello. So let’s start by clicking “Add a list…”. Let’s name this first one “Generate Lead,” then just hit the Enter key and you’ll automatically be moved to the another “Add a list” to the right of the first. We’re going to add five more lists. In order add, “Consultation Scheduled”, “Proposal”, “Contract”, “New Client Onboard”, and “Lost”.
- Before we move on I want to explain each of these lists (aka categories), in regards to our sales pipeline.
- Generate Lead: This list is the stage of the pipeline where someone has expressed interested – whether by email, phone, or direct contact – in working with you, but you haven’t had a formal discussion about the services or made any offers.
- Consultation Scheduled: This is the stage at which your potential client, the someone who expressed interest, has scheduled a formal business discussion with you.
- Proposal: At this point, you’ve had your formal business discussion with the potential client, you’ve given them a quote or formal proposal, and you’re waiting for their reply.
- Contract: If the potential client accepts your quote/proposal, then you move them here until they have officially signed any necessary contracts and paid their invoice (if payment is to be upfront).
- New Client Onboarding: Congratulations! The potential client has officially become a client. At this stage, you set up your new client within your project management space (I highly recommend Teamwork PM), get all their information squared away, get them all their necessary information, etc.
- Lost: This is the sad place, where leads go to die. If someone doesn’t follow up on creating a consultation, doesn’t accept a proposal, doesn’t sign the contract(s), or just doesn’t seem like a good fit for you to work with, you place them here. Usually, you only want to leave them here for about a week or two, after which you decide whether to put them back in the pipeline or archive them.
- Now that we have our lists set up for the sales pipeline, we are going to set up our labels. The way we will be using labels is to designate, specifically, why a client is going through the pipeline. This step is only really necessary if you offer more than one service. You could also use labels to designate where a lead came from, such as an ad, Facebook group, website, referral, etc.
- In the upper right-hand corner of your board, you’ll see “… Show Menu“. Click this to open your menu back up.
- Click “… More”. Then click “Labels.”
- Now you should see a few blank labels of varying colors. The color scheme you choose to use is up to you. For now, let’s create our first label.
- Click on the top label, and you’ll get a pop-up titled “Change Label.” This first label we’re going to name “Administration,” leave the color green and click the “Save” button.
- Personally, I have a label for each service I offer, “Real Estate,” “Social Media,” “Website,” “OBM,” “Admin,” “Design or Other,” “Launch Management, “Coaching.” When someone enters the “Generate Lead” stage, I tag them with all the labels that they showed interested. Then after the consultation, and I’ve moved them to “Proposal,” I add and remove any necessary labels based on the consultation.
- Once you’re done creating your labels go ahead and close the menu.
- Now that we’ve got the basic system for the sales pipeline in place allow me to illustrate exactly how this all works. Under “Generate Lead” click “Add a card…”. For this example, let’s name it “Jane Doe,” and click enter. You’ll notice that you are automatically moved down to another new card.
- Instead of creating another new card, click on the card we just created, “Jane Doe.” Now you’ll see a popup window with a wide variety of options. The tutorial goes over most of these features, but I’m going to run down the list real quick for you.
- For our purposes, we’re not going to touch on members, but you can create Teams in Trello, invite all your team members or clients, give them all permissions, etc. For this, I’ll recommend checking out Trello’s Guide to Teams.
- Now that we have Jane Doe’s card open let’s click “Edit the description…”. We’re going to pretend that Jane Doe has sent us an email message saying, “Hello, I was referred to you from John Doe. He said you could help me with basic administrative tasks, such as my scheduling and bookkeeping.” So in the description, we are going to put: “Jane Doe contacted me by email – [Insert Email Link here if you want]. Referred by John Doe. Needs help with Administrative Tasks.” Then click “Save.”
- Next, we’ll click the “Labels” button and click the “Administration” label. This will apply this label to this card.
- For demonstrative purposes, we are going to add a small checklist. Click the “Checklist” button, and title it: “Setup Consultation.” Then click the “Add” button.
- You’ll see a new section added to your card that should look like this:
- Click on “Add an item…”. We need to send a reply email to Jane Doe with our available days and times for a consultation. So let’s create add this to the checklist, “Send Jane Doe reply email with available days and times.”
- Next, let’s click on the “Due Date” button. This will give you a pop-up which a calendar. For this demonstration, just set the date to a week from today. Then click on the “Time” and you can edit when this is due on that day. When you’re done click “Save”.
- At this point we’ve gone over most all the basic features you need to know about for cards, at least for our Sales Pipeline system we are creating. So go ahead and click the “X” in the upper right-hand corner of the card pop-up.
- I’d like to note, that you can drag cards from one list to another. Try it now by clicking on the Jane Doe card, and while holding down the left mouse button, drag it to “Consultation Scheduled”. Moving clients from one list to another is just that simple.
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