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Bolster Contact Management — and Your Sales Pipeline — with Notion

This guide details the system behind the Contact Management & Sales Pipeline template. Duplicate it to your workspace or craft it from scratch.

Multi-formatted relational databases make Notion a powerful place to manage your contacts and sales opportunities. Not only can you display your contacts in compelling formats; you can also filter them within contextual views across your workspace.

This guide leverages those advanced functionalities to give any workspace a sophisticated, streamlined system for managing contacts, brands and opportunities.

Here's what you'll learn:

Core Principle: Centralize and Contextualize

My foremost recommendation for any Notion workspace is to:

  1. centralize information in related master databases; then
  2. create filtered views of that information within contextual dashboards.

That's the foundation of The Bulletproof Workspace, and effective contact management upholds the same principle. In essence, a Contacts database of individual people links to a Brands database of the companies, nonprofits and other organizations those individuals represent. These two databases hold Contacts and Brands of every type — customers, partners, vendors, product manufacturers, friends, family, your teammates, et al. They also hold prospective customers, which creates a sales pipeline that closely resembles a conventional CRM.

Relation > Select

Rather than using database-specific Select properties, connecting databases with Relation properties offers numerous advantages, including:

In addition to the Contacts-Brands relation, you can optionally relate your Contacts and Brands to a master Cities database, which can then automatically populate the State/Province and Country via Rollup properties.

Throughout your workspace, you'll likely find other databases to relate to Contacts. By relating Contacts to Projects and Meetings databases, for example, you can display filtered lists of relevant Contacts within each Project and Meeting.

Optional Geographic Databases

If your Contacts hail from diverse cities, states/provinces or countries, master geographic databases will offer the aforementioned benefits of Relations over Selects.

Placement

Store Cities, States & Provinces and Countries databases wherever you keep your master databases. Within the Bulletproof framework, they live in VaultBolts.

Properties

Notion Contact Management: Country Properties

These databases contain only Relation and Rollup properties. All relations pass through the Cities database: it contains a Relation property for both Countries and States & Provinces.

Then, Countries has a Rollup property that "rolls up" the State from each Country's related Cities. Similarly, States & Provinces has a Rollup that "rolls up" the Country from each State/Province's related Cities. (Because Rollups do not offer a "unique values" option, the values may appear multiple times, but the redundancy has no impact on the ability to sort, which is their primary purpose.)

Views

Notion Contact Management: Country Views

Cities, States/Provinces and Countries are nicely accessed as Lists and edited as Tables. Sort all views hierarchically, as applicable: Country → State/Province → City.

Consider creating filtered views for common sub-regions, such as a "U.S. States" view within the States & Provinces database.

Templates

Notion Contact Management: Country Template

Each City, State/Province and Country template includes Gallery-formatted Linked Databases for Contacts and Brands. Those Linked Databases include self-referencing filters that display only the Contacts and Brands for the given item. Across all templates, Brands display their Website; Contacts display their Brand, Email and Mobile #. In the Country and State or Province templates, each Brand and Contact's City is also displayed.

Country Icons

For each Country, choose the flag as the icon for a nice aesthetic across database formats.

Essential Databases

Store your Contacts and Brands databases wherever you keep your master databases. Within the Bulletproof framework, they live in VaultBytes.

Contacts

Your Contacts database centralizes individual people of every relationship type.

Properties

Notion Contact Management: Contact Properties

Properties of the Contacts database generally align with conventional CRMs, but of course, you can add and remove them to suit your unique needs. Here are some examples:

Contact Template

Notion Contact Management: Contact Template

The notes you keep about each contact, if any, will depend on the nature of your work or personal workspace. An open-ended Notes section with a placeholder Toggle block gives you the flexibility to record the contact's preferences and other unique qualities for ongoing reference.

Views

Notion Contact Management: Contact Gallery

Contacts display nicely as Galleries, sorted by Last Name, with the Brand, Email and Mobile # properties visible. For views where all contacts contain a Headshot, include a Card Preview; otherwise, exclude the Card Preview.

Brands

Your Brands database centralizes all of the companies, nonprofits and other organizations that you reference across your workspace. That includes your Contacts' employers.

Prospects

The Brands database also includes your prospects; it's your sales pipeline, functioning much like a conventional CRM. However, most CRMs include a third database in addition to Contacts and Brands — "Deals" or "Opportunities" — but I find in my work with clients and my own experience that using Brands as the prospects is simpler and just as sufficient. Nonetheless, if you conduct your sales cycle multiple times for each brand — for independent products or services — you might consider a Deals database.

Properties

Notion Contact Management: Brand Properties

Views

Brand Templates

Notion Contact Management: Brand Template

The Brand and Prospect templates add a Gallery of the Brand's Contacts to the inner page contents, each with the Job Title, Email and Mobile # properties visible. You might also consider displaying each Contact's City.

The Prospect template also includes sections for notes and conversation logs. If you maintain a master Meetings database, you can link it to Brands and include it as a Linked Database, with a self-referencing filter, within the Prospect template.

Additional Relations

Notion Contact Management: Meeting Attendees

You likely have other databases throughout your workspace where a relation to Contacts or Brands would be helpful. The aforementioned relation to Meetings allows you to track sales conversations for prospects. You can also relate Meetings to Contacts, which allows you to include a Gallery of attendees (filtered Contacts) within each meeting. The Gallery displays each attendee's Full Name, Brand, Email and Mobile #.

By relating Contacts to Projects, you can include a Gallery of each Project's associated Contacts within the Project template. The Gallery displays each Contact's Full Name, Brand, Email and Mobile #.

If you maintain a database of Buckets (Bulletproof) or Areas (PARA) that contain your clients, you can link each client's Bucket to its Brand, thus allowing you to "roll up" information between the two databases, including Contacts.


For a robust applicant tracker and other useful templates, see Markup Hero's guide to Notion templates.

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