Thinking Outside the Box with Nimble CRM Hacks

After working with so many companies on helping them to implement Nimble CRM, the one thing that I have learned is that there is almost always more than one way to skin a cat. Here are a few of my favorite Nimble CRM hacks because … every company has unique needs. Some of these you may already know …

Nimble CRM Today Page

Your Today Page on Nimble is your dashboard and you can choose from a variety of widgets that will display specific information such as deals or tasks. Take a look at the widget assortment regularly as Nimble has been known to introduce new widgets with little to no fanfare.

You will also note that several widgets have a dropdown box. For example, on deals, you can choose to show your deals or team deals. These widgets also have a “more” button, symbolized by “…”, in the upper right hand corner of the widget.

You can move the widget, hide the widget (you can always add it back later) and you can also duplicate the widget. So, for the example of deals, I could have one widget showing my deals and a second widget showing team deals. Nice!

Nimble CRM Contact Records

When you look at a contact record on Nimble, the left side of the record is composed of boxes that show specific sets of data. Did you know that you can reorder these boxes to show the most pertinent information, for you, up toward the top of the record? 

Did you know that you can also choose to hide those boxes that are not important to you? You can choose these same actions on Nimble’s browser extension, Prospector. These actions are activated by the more (…) button at the top of the record.

The more button also allows you to choose several other actions. A couple of the newer ones include converting a company record to a person record or vice versa and also placing a notice on the contact record.

A notice, and you can choose what it says and the color of the notice, will alert others to something special about this person or company. Or, something not so special like “don’t do business with this loser”. If someone attempts to email this person, from within Nimble, they will also be alerted of this notice. Only the record owner may add or remove a notification.

Nimble has recently introduced a special box along the left side of contact records. You can use this box to show specific data fields including custom fields that you have created. You can name the box whatever you like and move it like any other box. You can also create duplicates of this box, all with unique names and fields. There is one limitation.

While you can select from fields to display in the box, the selection of fields includes both person and company data sets. If you attempt to put a company field in a person record, Nimble will tell you that it is a company field but it is not highly visible with this notification. At any rate, it won’t add it.

What if, for example, you want to display an employee count (a company field ) in a person record? One way to do this is to create a new custom field, for a person record and give it a different, yet similar, name. Now you have the same info available in both company and person records!

Nimble has the ability to display a contact’s employment history. Note that Nimble will not go out and find this on the web, say on LinkedIn. It is based on the information that you provide and, for example, you could edit a record to show a new employer and then move their previous employer down. 

You can also use these fields in a number of creative ways. What happens if someone is associated with more than one company (gig economy or fractional employment)? You can do that. In fact, you can associate any contact record with multiple companies. Maybe an outside consultant or influencer, for example.

Nimble offers several ways to associate any Nimble record with activities that you are registering for a specific Nimble record. These are called related contacts and they show up on both tasks and deals (participants).

Tags, Custom Fields, & Custom Activities

Here is where we can really get creative! Let’s first talk about tags. Nimble CRM has two types of separate tagging systems … contacts and activities. Tags are used to group your contacts or activities and they can be created on the fly. Tags can also be used in contact record searches or to filter activity reports by activity tag.

Tags are shared by all team members. If you have a lot of team members, you may wish to choose unique tags or you could also preface a tag with the team member’s initials. For example, CJ – Prospects. Note that you can also create and save custom searches to show specific subsets of records. In this same example, I could easily create a search for records that are tagged “Prospect” and owned by Craig.

An alternative to tags, if you don’t like this idea, is to use custom fields. Nimble allows you to create up to 1,000 and in a variety of formats. Remember, all data fields in Nimble, including custom fields, are searchable. Nimble will also allow you to customize the dropdowns in certain fields of the Lead Fields contact widget.

Nimble CRM also offers custom activities which you create and name. Think of these as tasks that you register, but tasks that are identified more specifically. For example, Virtual Meeting. Mind you, you could specify that this is a virtual meeting in the task description, or as an activity tag, but a custom activity is easier to filter, IMHO.

Custom activities have another advantage and I think it is a big one. In the Leads Field box on a contact record, you will see the date that this person or company was last contacted by you or a member of your team. This same information is used to reset any Stay In Touch Reminder that you have set for this record.

The last contacted date, stay in touch reminder, is updated by emails exchanged, calendar events held, or phone calls that you have logged. Tasks will not update these fields. Custom activities can update these fields. You will determine this when you create the custom activity and note that you cannot change the status (update or not update) after the custom activity has been created so think first, type later.

Workflows, Deals, & Pipelines

Let’s start with some similarities and also some differences. Workflows and Pipelines are similar in the sense that both are used to display the stages, in order, of a process. I think like a salesperson or a sales manager so … I will use a leads workflow to identify the stages (activities) that a salesperson should go through in order to determine whether or not this is an opportunity (deal) that we want to pursue. 

If the answer is yes … I will convert this opportunity to a valid deal (this is a separate record associated with a contact and/or company) and that deal will be placed in my Sales Pipeline which has its own set of stages from start to finish (won, loss, or delete). Both workflows and pipelines allow me to drag and drop contact or records through the various stages.

Contacts are added to workflows. Deals are added to Pipelines. Both are different record types. While on the surface, a contact in a workflow might look similar to a deal in a pipeline, there are differences. A deal will include a dollar value, a projected close date, and a percentage probability of closing. All of these are used in revenue reports and forecasting. They do not appear in workflows.

However, a workflow has a unique feature called a card  that is used to display specific data fields for this potential opportunity. While I would not recommend this, you could create custom workflow fields to show dollar value, close date, and probability of closing and bypass deals and pipelines. Note that you will not be able to generate a revenue forecast, or a revenue report, using this method, but this is your Nimble, not mine.

You can create, and customize, multiple workflows and pipelines. For example, you could have a separate pipeline for each salesperson (note that you can filter pipelines by salesperson) or you could have one pipeline with one set of stages for one product line and a completely different one for another product line or service.

These examples also hold true for workflows. It is also important to note that a workflow does not have to be sales or marketing related. There are a number of workflow templates that you can use as is or modify and you can also create workflows from scratch. Think about what you do, that can be associated with a contact record, that has a process. Maybe you do these on spreadsheets now. Maybe you can now do these on a workflow? If your workflow is internal with team members, create contact records for each.

A couple of other quick notes … Since contact records are associated with workflows, you can add a contact record directly to a workflow during record creation, manually, or when you import records from an external source. For example, should you get a .csv file of leads collected from a recent show … add them to your leads workflow as a part of the import process.

In terms of pipelines, this is my personal preference. You can display your pipeline graphically (individual deals in stages) or as a list. I like the latter because I can quickly look at what deals each salesperson is working on, the dollar value, the close date, etc. and what their total pipeline value is. Both views will also alert me to stuck deals (red) which means that they have spent too much time in a deal stage and/or are past the projected close date.

Nimble CRM Reports

There are three types of reports in Nimble CRM … Group Messaging Results (Group Messages), Activity Reports (Activities), and Revenue Reports (Reports). All can be filtered by a number of factors. They also tend to have hidden figures. 

We all know that hyperlinks are generally in blue. This rule holds true in Nimble as well. However, sometimes hyperlinks in reports are in black. When you roll over a field, you will see either an underline appear or it will change to blue. Why do they not just show in blue up front? I dunno’. Ask Nimble.

Want to see the details on an individual group message that was sent. Click on the subject. On the reports dashboard (revenues) literally every label that is shown in black is, in fact, a hyperlink taking you to greater detail!

Activity reports are a little different.  First off, there are multiple ways to filter these. Second … pay special attention to the more (…) button at the top of each column next to the name of the column. Hidden gems.

If you would like to learn more about whether or not Nimble CRM might be the right CRM for you, please book a free 30-minute Zoom consultation with me!

Craig M. Jamieson

Craig M. Jamieson is a lifelong B2B salesperson, manager, owner, and a networking enthusiast. Adaptive Business Services provides solutions related to the sales professional including Boise’s best B2B leads group, NetWorks! Boise Valley. We are a Nimble SCRM Solution Partner and a Value Added Associate for TTI Performance Systems. Craig also conducts training and workshops primarily in social selling and communication skills. Craig is also the author of “The Small Business’ Guide to Social CRM”, now available on Amazon!

Craig M. Jamieson

Craig M. Jamieson

Craig M. Jamieson

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