Related article: How to automatically forward leads into your CRM

Leads are great, but if you don't have a systematic approach to respond in a timely and personalized manner where you can automate your followup and track your progress--you won't be able to learn what's working and what's not.

Spending 30-45 mins now to setup your automation sequences will save your team up to 15-minutes per lead on manual followup and tracking and increase conversion drastically by reducing time to followup which is why its so critical to set this up before getting started with leads on Hotel Tech Report.

This article will guide you through:

I. What You'll Be Using Zapier to Automate

II. 6-steps to Setting Up Your Lead Followup

III. 4 Critical Reasons Why You Should Automate Your Lead Followup

I. What You'll Be Using Zapier to Automate

Why Setting Up Zapier automation is so important (and helpful!):

Once your Zap is turned on the beautiful thing is that everything is in full autopilot and you can just set it and forget it when it comes to HTR leads. The only thing you'll do is accept or decline leads via the lead inbox in your dashboard and all of the manual admin, lead routing, CRM data entry and mannual followup will be fully automated which (a) will save you ~15-20 mins/lead and (b) increase your success rates by lowering response times!

In Zapier there are two main things 'trigger' and 'actions':

  • Trigger: This is the event that will happen that will 'trigger' an automation sequence to begin (ie. your trigger will be any time a member of your team accepts a new lead in your HTR dashboard)

  • Actions: These are the automated 'actions' that will happen after the 'trigger' event occurs (ie. you will send the lead details into your CRM and/or into your marketing automation sequences to automatically and instantly send a followup to each lead)

Here are the steps in the sequence so you know what we will be setting up:

  1. Lead is Captured: Hotel Tech Report gets your company a lead and your team is sent a notification email

  2. Review + Accept the Lead: You login to your vendor dashboard to review the lead details and accept the lead

  3. Automation Sequence is Triggered: Once you decide you want a lead and press accept, the automation sequence will be triggered

  4. Zapier Inbox Receives the Lead Notification Email: The lead is automatically sent to your Zapier email parser inbox (this is called, the 'trigger') with all of the details of the lead

  5. ∴ Actions Triggered: Once the trigger event occurs, you will be able to trigger automated 'actions' (eg. add contact to your CRM, create followup to do item for your sales team, add the contact to a list to send on an automated followup sequence, etc)

II. 6-Easy Steps to Automating Your Lead Followup

  1. Create a Free Zapier Account

  2. Create a Zapier Parsing Email

  3. Map Your Fields

  4. Setup Your Zap and Simple Actions

  5. Setup Your Zap to Create a New Lead in Your CRM

  6. Setup Paths for Each Type of Lead (eg. price quotes, demos and matched leads)

Step 1: Create a Free Zapier Account

The first step is to create a free Zapier account that you'll use to setup your automations.

Step 2: Create a Zapier Parsing Email

In this step, we will setup a Zapier email parser that will receive your lead details and serve as the 'trigger' for your automations.

Step 3: Send a Test Email to Zapier & Map the Fields

Map the fields in Zapier so that it knows where each field will appear in the lead forwarding emails from HTR.

Step 4: Setup Your Zap and Simple Actions

Now that you have created your Zapier inbox, setup forwarding from your vendor dashboard and mapped your fields...the world is your oyster! Here is a quick intro to setting up actions with your parsed data.

Step 5: Setup Your Zap to Create a New Lead in Your CRM

The simplest form of automation is just to create the lead in your CRM and assign them to a sales person.

Step 6 (optional): Setup Zapier Paths to Drop Leads into Nurture Sequences to Followup Automatically (eg. price quote, demo request and matched leads)

We recommend setting up 3 key flows based on inquiry type:

  • Flow #1 (Price quotes): Filter in Zapier for leads with the 'inquiry type' field= 'RFP Proposal request' OR 'Request quote'

  • Flow #2 (Demo requests): Filter in Zapier for leads with the 'inquiry type' field = 'Request Demo'

  • Flow #3 (Matched leads): Filter in Zapier for leads with the 'inquiry type' = 'Matched lead'

Advanced paths: Eventually if you want to further personalize your followup based on hotel type (eg. boutique, resort, branded, etc) or hotel size (eg. under 200 rooms) you can do so easily. More paths means more complexity and more to manage so we recommend starting with the 3-core flows first and running them for 6-months to see if you still think additional flows are necessary. If so, please reach out via the live chat and ask for the exact field options for hotel type and size.

III. 4 Critical Reasons Why You Need to Automate Your Lead Followup if You Want to Gain Visibility and Improve Performance

  • Save time: Setting up automation takes 30-45 minutes upfront but then you save hours of your team's time on followup going forward

  • Strategy, consistency and experimentation: If you're changing who responds, how quickly, when they respond and what they say--its impossible to learn what's working and what's not. Automation allows you to standardize your funnels and learn which types of leads work best, which outreach messaging works best and more.

  • Improve response rates: Remember that the user has to verify their contact info and HTR has to manually review and verify all leads so sometimes it can take up to 48-hours before a lead arrives in your inbox. When they do, you want to make sure to followup as quickly as possible so setting automation allows you to instantly followup with leads as soon as you accept them and there is a direct correlation between lead response times and success rates.

  • Track performance: As Peter Drucker once said, "If you can't measure it, you can't manage it." By setting up automated followup sequences by lead type you can gain visibility into not just which leads were HTR leads, but which types of leads from HTR were the most successful, which outreach messaging was the most successful and more. Without automation you can't successfully identify what's working and what's not to improve response rates and conversion over time.

Still need some help?

Reach out via the live chat on Hotel Tech Report to setup a free coaching session.

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