Working with Leads in Dynamics CRM

In this section, you’ll learn some of the common ways of working with leads in Dynamics CRM. Use the links below to jump to several step-by-step guides:

Typically, you’ll manage leads through the list view, using filtering and sorting to figure out which leads to follow up with. Here’s a list view of All Leads:

All leads view
View a list of all leads in CRM 2011

A manager will typically consume information about leads through dashboards, which provide a higher-level view of lead data. Here’s an example of a dashboard with lead data:

Dashboard
View a sales dashboard in CRM 2011

Creating Leads

There are several ways you can create a lead. Here are some examples:

  • Create manually (see below for more detail)
  • Import a list from Excel or another source
  • Automate lead generation through a web form such as PowerWebForm
  • Convert a Dynamics CRM activity like an email, phone call, appointment activity into a lead

Tip! Having accurate and clean data is always important when you capture lead data. Read more on best practices for keeping your data clean.

How to create a new lead manually

1. In your Lead View, click New. This will bring up a new Lead record where you can enter data manually.

New Lead

Filling out a new lead form
View a lead form in CRM 2011

2. Fill out required data such as Topic, Last Name, and Company Name, as well as any additional data you may have. Contact information is particularly important for following up and qualifying leads.

Tip! Sometimes leads are entered into Dynamics CRM by more than one user, creating duplicate records. Learn more about duplicate detection and removing duplicate records from the system.

Assigning Leads

You can assign leads a couple of ways. One would be to auto-assign leads from workflows. But you can also assign individual leads manually.

To assign a lead or several leads to an individual, open your Lead View and select the leads you want to assign. Select the Ellipses in the command bar and click the Assign button in the drop down.

Assigning a Lead
View how to assign a lead in CRM 2011

From there, you can choose which user you want to assign the lead(s) to, or you can choose yourself.

Assigning a lead to yourself, a user, or a team
View different options of assigning a lead in CRM 2011

Adding Activities to Leads

To add an activity to a lead, open a Lead record, navigate to Activities and choose which Activity you would like to add for that lead. Common activities are Tasks, Phone Calls, E-mails and Appointments.

Adding activities to a lead
View adding activities CRM 2011

Here’s an example of what a Phone Call Activity looks like.

Adding a phone activity to a lead
View a phone call activity in CRM 2011

Qualifying Leads in Dynamics CRM

When you Qualify a lead, you determine whether or not that lead is a good candidate for doing business with. At that point, the lead will be converted into a Contact, Account, or Opportunity or a combination of these three record types. If you determine that they are not good candidates for any of these actions, you will Disqualify the lead, which means that they are not currently a good candidate to do business with.

To qualify a lead:

1. In your Lead view, open the Lead record and you can either Qualify or Disqualify the lead in the command bar.

Qualifying and disqualifying a lead
View qualifying and disqualifying a lead in CRM 2011

2. If you qualify the record, you convert the lead into either an Account, Contact, or Opportunity record, or a combination of those record types.

  1. If you Qualify a record, the original lead record is deactivated.
  2. If you Disqualify a record, you’ll have the option of entering a reason why it is disqualified – Lost, Cannot Contact, No Longer Interested, or Canceled. Then the lead record will be deactivated and you will not find it in your list of active leads.
Tip! Every organization will have its own criteria for determining whether or not a lead is qualified. It is important to have all Dynamics CRM users be consistent with the criteria. Examples of criteria to qualify a lead include:

  • Is there an opportunity to do business with the lead?
  • Are they planning on buying in the near future?

Most organizations will ONLY qualify a lead when there is an Opportunity. If there is no Opportunity, the Lead may stay in the Leads area and be marked for nurturing marketing until the lead is ready to buy.

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