Customer Relationship Management- Why Is It Important Anyway?

Have you ever noticed how the business landscape is constantly changing? Without a solid strategy and effective tools, you’ll fall behind your competitors in no time. This is why business owners need to utilize a CRM to maintain their customer database and relationships. CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management and it’s an essential tool for everything related to customer interactions.  Sound promising?

It certainly is.

Based on a report released in 2017, Gartner predicted that CRM will serve as a revenue driver by 2021. Without a doubt, CRM technology is rapidly rising with a whopping market value of $40 billion in 2018 alone. A customer relationship management tool gives businesses a better view of what the customer needs and the ability to track sales opportunities. CRM systems have features that enable monitoring of sales and documenting customer updates. Its robust features allow the integration of various marketing tools like MailChimp, Active Campaign, Survey Monkey and other popular tools.

All You Need To Know About CRM

A CRM is more than just a database- A CRM does more than just managing customers. If you learn how to use it, you’ll be able to make effective changes to your organizational lifestyle.

A CRM Requires Complete Organizational Change-When using a CRM, everyone in your organization must be prepared for the change. This means that top management must make changes to the onboarding process, especially during the transition period. Employees and team leaders should also be committed to using your CRM consistently and regularly. You should show how to use the software and fully utilize it to bring value to each position.

A CRM is a matter of choice-there are tons of customer relationship management systems for you to choose from. You might be tempted to settle for the first vendor that you see in an Internet search but you should really take your time because each CRM has its own functions and strong points. You’ll need to research your options thoroughly by making a list of the problems you want to solve and the features you think can help solve those problems.

CRM Functions and Features

Let’s start with some of the most popular functions of a CRM.

A CRM streamlines processes by consolidating customer documents and information. Anyone who has access to the CRM database can edit, update or manage the system. Not only that, you can also integrate the CRM into your digital transformation journey. What’s in it for you? You can reduce a lot of the time-consuming tasks in your business such as having to look through physical folders and documents. Most CRM systems these days have the ability to record customer interactions that happen over phone, email, or even social media. It can also track productivity and performance, maintain customer’s personal information and even automate workflow.

Lead Management: Manages prospects and tracks tasks, deals, and sales activities. It also enables you to view customer profiles and interactions by connecting to contact management. Advanced CRM systems can even let you customize each sales stage.

Contact Management: Provides a customer database, which serves as a centralized location for transactions and interactions. This is also the feature where you can store and retrieve contact details and demographics.

Campaign Management: Organizes campaigns so you can easily measure success based on your business metrics. It also allows you to automate workflows and set up customer targeting.

Reporting: Gives a summary of market insights, which you can use for analyzing your marketing strategy. It also helps you determine the current marketing trends, patterns, and behavior.

Email Tracking: Allows you to track emails once integrated with popular email clients like MailChimp, Outlook or Gmail. With this feature, you can find out whether your emails were clicked or not which provides an insight into your email marketing strategy.

The Importance of CRM in Improving Your Business Performance

1. It provides a better customer experience

Your interaction with customers doesn’t end once they make a purchase of your product or service. In fact, it’s just the beginning of establishing a strong relationship. With your strategy, you are either going to retain or repel customers and this is where CRM becomes a useful tool because it gives you access to your customer’s buying history. The data is crucial to offering better customer service as it lets you profile each customer. Smoother interactions attract repeat customers and builds trust.

2. It creates deeper customer relationships

Knowing your customers’ pain points and challenges will help you develop more sustainable relationships with them. What better way to establish trust than to use a system that allows you to explore their challenges? As you identify the things that matter to your customers, you’ll be able to tailor your approach by understanding their preferences, challenges, and goals.

3. It increases employee productivity

Businesses that have taken full advantage of CRM technology have already reaped its benefits and one of which is reducing manual operations. Automating a business process allows employees to become more productive by spending less time on non-revenue generating tasks. Reduced manual tasks give employees more time to search for leads and develop techniques to strengthen relationships with existing customers.

So which type of customer relationship management tool works for me?

Types of CRM

Collaborative CRM

Collaborative CRM or Strategic CRM is a type of CRM system that shares customers’ data among key business units like marketing team, support team, and sales team. Although each business unit works independently, the system is a helpful tool so all units can work towards a common goal.  You use the information found in the CRM system to improve overall customer experience which results in acquiring new customers and retaining existing ones.

Operational CRM

Operational CRM creates a virtual business hub where you make transactions and interactions. The system fuses sales automation, service automation, and marketing automation into one. Its main purpose is to generate leads in the hope of converting them to sales. Alongside generating leads, this CRM system also captures essential details and lets you track the lead status.

Sales Automation: Automates the sales process so organizations can attract new customers and do business with existing customers more efficiently. It manages customer information to generate sales and help grow your business.

Service Automation: Focuses on customer retention by building a strong relationship and providing excellent service. With its issue management, you will be able to resolve your customer’s concerns or problems with an established service process. Other features include service label management and customer call management.

Marketing Automation: The system searches the most effective way of offering products and services. Campaign management is one of the modules in marketing automation that allows you to carry out marketing-related tasks. With this feature, you can decide on the channels you will use to reach up to prospects.

Analytical CRM

Analytical CRM gives a clear insight to top management, marketing, sales and support teams on how to provide better customer service. Its main function is to analyze customer data so organizations will get an idea of how their businesses are performing. Analytical CRM helps marketing executives make better decisions and understand the effectiveness of a campaign. This CRM system helps achieve the following:

  • Analyze the business’ key performance indicators
  • Obtain customer’s information using multiple channels
  • Set business approach and strategy in Marketing, Sales, and Support

In the age dominated by technology, each and every business should create a better way to meet customer’s expectations. Without understanding who they are or what they need, building trust and credibility will be a challenge. Knowing the importance of a CRM will help you view customers from clearer perspectives. It’s also an opportunity to personalize your interaction to create the exceptional customer experience.

Wait, you’re not sure how to take advantage of a customer relationship management tool? Sit back and relax. We’re here to help you, give us a call and see how we can assist in setting up the proper systems and processes to make your business more effective.

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