How To Create a Lead Management Process in Evernote: Step 1

In a previous post, I laid out my perspective on the three buckets of workflows that I help people to manage in Evernote and how the power of Evernote is in its ability to manage all three simultaneously in one place. The three buckets of workflows are:

  1. Reference Functions
  2. Project Management
  3. Process Management

One of the processes that Evernote is brilliant at managing is lead management. In my Evernote account, I manage the lead process by moving notes through a series of notebooks that represent different phases of my lead process. I also have templates and note naming conventions in place that support my process, as well as a protocol for dealing with leads that allows me to cope with variations that come up during the process of interacting with people who may, or may not, become clients. 

The first step in creating a lead management process in Evernote is to identify the form that you receive leads. For me [and likely most of you], leads enter my world in one of three ways:

  • Through face to face networking and meetings which typically results in an exchange of business cards (a physical piece of paper).
  • Via email which results from a form on my website being filled out, a contact from a social channel reaching out, or a referral from someone in my social or client sphere.
  • A phone call - from my website, face-to-face networking, referral, etc.

Basically, for every client lead I get, I either get a business card, an email, or a phone call. And, I have a protocol set up in Evernote for dealing with each of these lead channels. This post details how I use Evernote to cope with one of the channels that leads get on my radar: Receiving a business card through face-to-face networking. 

This 8 minute video gives a visual demonstration of how I deal with business cards I receive at networking events. It shows you how the Evernote camera, within seconds, magically:

  • converts business cards to contacts
  • creates new LinkedIn connections
  • creates geo-located notes
  • and emails my contact information to the person I just met

You can alternatively read the transcript of the video provided below.

Benefits of my Process

  • I have no stacks of business cards at my desk, in my wallet, or scattered about. Everything is digital, and in Evernote.
  • I am growing my LinkedIn network and don’t have to do anything other than scan their card to send them a LinkedIn request. LinkedIn requests can be sent automatically using Evernote's business card scanning which capitalizes on their official integration with Evernote.
  • Prospects are saved to my phone contacts, if I want them to be. If I want to call them, I just call them. No need to hunt down their card or type in their email address.
  • Sometimes I forget the name of someone I met, but usually remember where I met them (I’m not the only one guilty of this I presume). By using Evernote to digitize my business cards where I meet them, I am able to retrieve contacts by map. It’s awesome.

Note that Evernote business card scanning is a paid Evernote feature. You need to be a Premium or Business level subscriber to get this function.

At the time of this post however, there is another option if you aren’t ready to make the leap to Evernote Premium or Business and want most of the nifty business card scanning features I show in the video. [Note that however, in my opinion, you really should upgrade. This feature alone is worth the $4.99/month, especially if you are in sales. And, I don’t get any compensation if you upgrade. I just think you should.] Scannable is Evernote’s free iOS only app, and I am a HUGE fan of it. As of the time of this post, business card scanning via Scannable is free. I doubt this will aways be the case. So, you can use Scannable to get nearly the same functionality I show in the video using the Evernote camera. This article describes how to use Scannable to scan business cards [an alternative to the method I illustrate in the video].

However, I don’t use Scannable for business card scanning. I find the Evernote camera function more intuitive and feature rich, so I use the Evernote app for business card scanning. In my world, it goes like this: I digitize all paper I come across [when away from my desk] with Scannable, except for business cards, which I digitize with the Evernote camera. 

So there it is, step 1 of my lead management process. It is also a key process in maintaining my paperless and file-free lifestyle. Evernote makes it so easy to do. Give it a try.

Having Trouble Getting Things to Work?

This process works best when you take the time to first review the settings for the Evernote app [you need to associate your LinkedIn account with Evernote, for example]. I detail my perspective on the proper settings in my Evernote Settings Guides. And, if you would like some one-on-one attention to get this process set up and configured to your specific situation, sign up for my new client coaching offer, where you work directly with me in a video conference session to share screens and get things done.

Video Transcript

Hi there, I'm Stacey Harmon. I thought it might be helpful to show you one of the workflows that I think would be really helpful to put in place for a really productive year. One of the things that Evernote does really well is support my process management. What I mean is things that go through a defined series of tasks and repeat overtime. Networking is one of those areas where it really transformed my process management with Evernote. I want to show you what's possible.

When you go to a networking event now, you probably collect a bunch of business cards. And if you're like most people, you take that stack of business cards, and it grows on your desk back at home. You may choose to send a LinkedIn request, or you may choose to email your contact information to that person. But probably half the time it doesn't happen. I can totally work with you to transform that. I want to show you how when I network it's a completely a different process that's efficient and gets the job done in an impressive manner of right out of the get-go. Let me show you what I do with business cards. When I'm in a networking event and I meet somebody, I take the card, and I make sure it is on a contrasting background. This is a white card. You can see I'm going to put it on a black background. I'm going to open the Evernote app, and then I'm going to go to the photo feature. I'm just going to place the card, point the camera at the card. You'll notice I didn't touch the screen, and it captures the image. It actually holds that image, and then it's going to extract the data right off of the card and put it into fields.

Now, it does an excellent job. It doesn't always do a perfect job. As you can see here, it actually interpreted this piece of data as a phone number, so I'm just going to delete that out. And when I touch the screen, it actually will zoom in to the right location. Let me just get out of this. I'm going to hit done. Notice here it also gives me an option to email my contact information. So with me standing in front of the person, I'm actually able to email them my contact information. They get an email from me while I'm standing right in front of them. I definitely impress people by doing that. They say, "Oh, you just sent me an email.” I say, "Yeah, I just sent you an email, really cool!"

I'm not going to do that in this case, because this is a demo card. But I'm going to hit the save button, and what it does is it actually saves that note into Evernote. It also did a couple of other things. Number one, it gave...well, so you can see here, it created the card, and it retains the copy of the image as well as starts a card here. It also auto-added it to my contacts. I, again, have never touched the screen, so you can see here now, she's in my contacts, which is great. You can turn that off if you don't want it, but I think it's a fabulous feature. It also geo-located where I took this image. Right now, I'm at home, so let's go over to the computer. I'll show you with another demo. I don't need you all to see exactly the location of my residence.

Earlier today, I was in an event, and I took a picture of a business card. Say I don't remember this person's name, but I remember where I met him. I can actually zoom in on the map to the location. I have this on the phone also. It's called "Places." It's called "Outlets" on the computer. But, you know, I was at Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth. I was at Ninth Street. So maybe I'm just going to kind of zoom in here this morning and...oh, this is probably it. Yep, that's it. I met Scott this morning, and I can actually click through to his card right here. Notice there's a notes field here where I can actually type things in, really cool stuff.

There's one other feature that I want you to know about as well. Obviously, it would be helpful to have a LinkedIn connection with this person too. What Evernote does is they have an official integration with LinkedIn. It will take this email address, and it will go and scour LinkedIn. And if it finds a match to that, and in this case it did not with Scott, it will actually pull in his avatar and allow me to send a LinkedIn request right alongside my contact information on the mobile screen. So when I come back to the office after a networking event, I have all of these new LinkedIn connections from people who I met, and I got their business card in my Evernote, totally transformative.

That alone is an amazing workflow transformation that we could deploy, but there is so much more that we could do with it as well. So I actually use this as a trigger to then start a process in Evernote where I am drip marketing to this person, if they are an appropriate lead for me. Or maybe I can have it go into a shared notebook that my assistant has, and we can create a template. I'll show you an example. In my account here, I have some templates that I created that help me with people who...prompt me to remember to ask certain questions when I deal with someone who's interested in Evernote Consulting Services. You know, what kind of a computer do they have? What's their mobile platform? These things impact the recommendations that I make for them.

I have this template, and I can just copy the note. In this case, for this demo, let's just put it in my inbox, and I'm going to copy it. I'm going to go up here, and then I can start filling out the information related to it. And then I can maintain and create a link to this Scott business card here that I just did, or maybe it's Julie. See, look at this. Here's the Julie information that I've got. So if I want to copy this note bling, let's assume I'm doing it for Julie, I could just paste this right here so that I have a quick access to her business card, and I can start following up on all of things I need to do. Maybe I need to add her to mail chamber. Maybe you guys use Salesforce, and you want make sure that your assistant adds them to Salesforce. You can start tracking all of that information and start a conversation.

There are other things I could do as well, but this is the gist of really how I start to build a lead file and nurture that relationship. And then I hand them their card back. I don't bring home any paper. I have no business cards I bring home from conferences or networking events, which is a great goal for you for next year. I have a LinkedIn request automatically sent to them, along with a digital email that has all my contact information. I've got to tell you, more than half the people that I interact with will respond to that and say, "Hey, it was great to meet you, thanks for sending this to me."

I've set a great brand impression just by using this Evernote software in order to transform the networking process. And I have a trigger, this note that's geo-located so I can remember where I met the person, and I can start adding them and working them through an internal process that helps me build my business. That's what I want to help you to do for next year. Be more digital, be more efficient, and be more on top of what you're doing.