Prospects and Customers in P21
Prophet 21 includes two main categories of customer accounts - "Customers" and "Prospects". For the most part P21 Customers and Prospects are really the same thing with a different status flag in the database. Prospects do have some limitations in P21 - for instance a Prospect must be converted into a Customer before an Order can be created. However it is possible to create Quotes, Opportunities and Tasks for a P21 Prospect. Because of this most P21 shops use Prospects as the primary way to store information about "potential" Customers.
While in most cases using Prospect accounts for potential Customer accounts works well, there are some drawbacks to this approach. For instance many P21 shops end up importing thousands of of leads (potential prospects) as P21 Prospects from file listings from sources such as Dun and Bradstreet or other third-party lead list providers. This can bloat the P21 database and make it more difficult to manage "real" Prospects. There is also no straight forward way to use Prospects in P21 as a pipeline for new customers. Other common sources of bloat and clutter in P21 can occur when P21 shops engage telemarketing services to generate leads and the leads aren't properly qualified as real Prospects or when a sales rep picks up business cards from a trade show and adds them to P21 as prospects before properly qualifying them as potential future customers.
Web Connect provides a way for a user to quickly record information about an organization or individual without having to create a P21 Prospect.
Introducing Web Connect Sales Leads Tracking and Management
Probably the best way to think of a Lead is as an "unqualified prospect" or "suspect" as some like to say. Imagine the following scenario:
A sales rep notices a new business opening. At this point the rep might only know the name of the business, the city and might have an idea of what type of business it is. The rep now records the lead in Web Connect with only this information and then sets the "Next Call Date" as a reminder to call on the business in the coming days. After later calling on the Lead, the sales rep enters additional information including the full address, phone number, website address and some notes. They can also add contacts to the Lead for the owner and also the business manager.
At this point if the sales rep has permission to create P21 Prospects in Web Connect, the rep could, with one-touch/click, convert the Lead to a P21 Prospect if there is potential for business. If the rep does not have permission to create P21 Prospects the rep could contact a Sales Manager or Admin to convert the Lead.
Another use for Web Connect Leads involves importing large listings of business leads from a source such as Dun and Bradstreet. Once the Leads are imported then they can be assigned to sales reps and also inside sales reps. This can work great if your organization would like to assign inside reps to make cold calls and qualify leads as prospects.
If the P21 shop uses telemarketing as a part of their overall lead generation strategy, they can even make the telemarketing firm a user in Web Connect and add the leads directly and even assign them (as directed by the P21 shop) for follow up by certain sales reps.
A Lead can have the following attributes
- Lead Name
- Address 1
- Address 2
- Postal Code
- Central Phone
- Website Address
- P21 Company
- Sales Rep
- Assigned To
- Next Call Date and Time
- Lead Source
- Lead Type
- Lead Status
- P21 Customer Class 1 through 5
- 1 or more Contacts
- 1 or more Notes