How to Automate Your Sales Pipeline

Engagement manager creating automation copy headline for the sales team titled - How to Automate Your Sales Pipeline Effectively

A solid strategy to automate your sales pipeline will bring positive results to your business. Created with specially designed automation software, sales pipeline messages provide prospects with a clear path through the purchasing process.

In this article, we’ll show you how to develop automated sales emails that boost engagement among your leads. We’ll also provide sales funnel examples and reveal how sales automation can help you retain customers and boost revenue.

HubSpot has a free sales funnel template for download. NOTE: you can also take the super slick HubSpot CRM for a test drive since it’s free forever.

1. Tracking Potential Sales

Many sales pipeline management software programs use opportunity records to track prospects’ progress. Opportunity records provide two important pieces of information. These records give sales reps a comprehensive view of where the lead is in the sales funnel.

Opportunity records also help sales reps develop a follow-up message for the lead. These records track the time and date that the next action should occur then allows the sales representative to prioritize leads according to how recently they made contact.

Female business development associate following up on a sales automation response
Your automated email strategy should be a supplement to the regular contact you make with the prospect.

2. Taking Advantage of the Sales Pipeline Stages

Effective sales automation strategies occur in stages. These stages allow leads to easily navigate the process. No matter what kind of business you have, each sales rep should be able to determine how likely a lead is to make a purchase. Ultimately, the qualification process takes place over three sales funnel stages:

  • Contacting: A lead in this stage is considered a new prospect.
  • Engaging: After establishing a dialogue with the lead, the rep will continue to determine whether he or she is qualified to purchase the product.
  • Qualified: In this final stage, the sales rep decides that the lead should move to the next stage in the sales pipeline.

With email automation, the lead would receive a personalized message after moving to the next stage in the sales qualification process. Remember, email automation should be used as a supplement to the contact you’re already making with the prospect.

7 Metrics to Help Guide Your Sales Pipeline

3. Composing Emails for the Sales Process

When crafting email messages for your sales automation strategy, consider the lead’s past and future communications with your business. Messages should reflect the stage the prospect is currently in – for example, a lead who’s just in the Contacting stage shouldn’t receive messages that are tailored to those who have passed the Qualifying stage.

Before writing a sales automation email, ask yourself:

  • Which sales stage is triggering this email?
  • When should this email be sent?
  • What previous communication has the lead received by the time this email is sent?

Write these emails in a friendly, conversational tone that avoids flowery language. Additionally, the emails need to be sent from the sales rep and should appear personal, not automated.

4. Reaching Customers with Automated Emails

During the Contacting stage of the sales process, the sales rep is simply trying to get in touch with the prospect through automated emails. These messages should address the fact the rep has been trying to reach the lead over the phone but hasn’t received a response. Provided that name and date fields are personalized then all leads can receive the same messages.

Some specific automated messages might look like:

  • ”I just tried to call.”: Send this email when you’ve made an attempt to get in touch via phone, but were unsuccessful. Provide your contact information and a friendly message encouraging the prospect to get in touch.
  • ”I can’t seem to reach you.”: Send this message to an unresponsive lead on a weekday morning, one week from the first automated message. Using a greeting like “Good Morning” can give the message a timely, personal feel.
  • ”Should I stop contacting you?”: This message should arrive on a weekday afternoon, two weeks after the lead was first contacted. At this point, you should start pulling away from the lead, since those who have not engaged after this long often don’t progress in the sales process.

5. Automate Your Sales Pipeline to Start New Relationships

Effective sales pipeline management can help your representatives build lasting relationships with customers. Sales automation also helps reps keep track of leads saving valuable time when implementing sales techniques. Managers will be able to analyze valuable data that can help them improve their company’s sales process.

A man & woman walking on a sunny morning, while holding hands on a pier
Personalize every email you send. People respond well to messages with a bit of human touch.

Conclusion

Most of all, sales automation allows your business to cultivate relationships with prospects, therefore increasing conversions and revenue. Sales automation can help generate more sales with less hassle for employees – a winning combination.

Increase Your Production 10-Fold with Sales Automation

Avatar for Eric Melillo

Eric Melillo

Eric Melillo is a certified HubSpot Inbound Marketing expert, Senior Brand Strategist, as well as a lover of family, friends, and life. He enjoys good health, Tae Kwon-Do and discovering the most influential marketing trends.


Avatar for Eric Melillo

Eric Melillo

Eric Melillo is a certified HubSpot Inbound Marketing expert, Senior Brand Strategist, as well as a lover of family, friends, and life. He enjoys good health, Tae Kwon-Do and discovering the most influential marketing trends.