When implemented well, CRM workflows can streamline your company’s sales and marketing processes. Though CRM is home to many different capabilities, it’s often automation that can have the most significant initial impact on your operations. For instance, you can use automation for a host of tasks, including email newsletter delivery, lead generation, lead scoring, reporting, customer and more.
The inside line on CRM workflow automation
With CRM, you can automate marketing, sales, customer support, and admin tasks which are necessary but not the optimal use of your staff’s time. With these time-consuming jobs out of the way, you and your team can concentrate on tasks that generate revenue. You can also set up CRM workflows to alert your team of crucial new lead and prospect updates. This heads-up could prove to be the key to converting them from leads and prospects into paying customers.
CRM is essentially a database combined with several productivity tools. These tools are used differently depending on a user’s role, be it sales, marketing, or customer support. Sales, for instance, will focus on lead tracking and interaction logging features. Other departments will use marketing tools or CRM well-established customer relationship chops.
How to automate workflows
Generally speaking, a CRM system will include:
- Project management tools
- Social media integration and more
From your dashboard, you can easily automate workflows based on customer actions. These are the triggers that automatically initiate a subsequent set of actions. The gain here is that your team doesn’t have to intervene to complete the necessary steps manually every time your customer takes a specific action.
Workflows you can automate
Email newsletters – You can create an autoresponder to thank a customer whenever they subscribe. This automatic email can also trigger the creation of a CRM file if required and assign a lead score.
Drip marketing – CRMs are ideal for creating sequences of marketing emails to help you nurture leads and move them through the sales funnel. You can then link to a workflow based on drip campaign engagement.
Lead generation – CRM can help you find leads. For example, when someone responds to a call-to-action, this can trigger an automated workflow that labels them as a potential lead.
Lead alerts – When leads satisfy various criteria in your database, an automated workflow can alert sales managers of critical changes and when urgent follow-up is required.
Account management – You can keep tabs on clients by receiving notifications whenever a contract is nearing its expiry date and needs re-signing or renegotiation. Depending on the circumstances, you could create automatic renewal emails.
Reporting – CRM systems can generate a treasure trove of reports. You can usually have them delivered automatically to your inbox. With a good CRM, you should be able to create workflows to handle any report you need.
Call logging – Automated call logging is bread and butter for a CRM system. But you can add jam by creating workflows for handling unanswered calls.
Customer service – CRM also has a pivotal role to play in customer service. You can create auto workflows to help you process support tickets, for example. It is also possible to send customer support and service emails, flag customers for priority follow-up, and alert the relevant support reps to take action.
Creating your CRM workflows
Having seen how versatile CRM workflows can be, here’s how you create them.
- Decide which processes can become CRM workflows – Don’t go overboard with automation. You still require the human touch, particularly at the lower end of funnels which almost always require human intervention. For example, automation is better earlier in the sales funnel.
- Set up your workflows – Setting up workflows in CRM systems is straightforward. It’s probably simpler than setting up conditional rules to filter your email. In addition, there are workflow templates that are easy to customize, so setting up an automated workflow is the work of a few minutes.
- Run your workflows and regularly test – Once created, you and your team should check to see how well the workflow performs. Then, run tests and adjust to correct any shortcomings.
- Update your team – If you change a workflow, always keep your team up to date on what has been altered and how this may impact their work. You will also get helpful feedback if a team member spots a flaw.
- Only use workflows that work for everyone – Workflows should help everyone. Never introduce a workflow if it helps one team at the expense of another. If this is the case, pull the workflow and work with your teams to find a solution that helps everyone. You may have to revise and retest the workflow a few times to perfect it.
How to get started with CRM
Having seen the benefits of automated workflows, it’s time to act. As small business owners are always pushed for time, here’s another time-saver: limit your search to cloud-based CRM systems. The cloud is, without a doubt, the way to go for small businesses wishing to harness the power of Customer Relationship Management. Cloud CRMs are affordable, housed entirely online, simple to implement and use. Compared to the expense and complexity of on-site solutions, cloud CRM is a no-brainer.
To see for yourself, it’s highly recommended you try out a few free trials to get meaningful exposure to the technology before committing yourself to a particular provider.
CRM automation is a wonderful way to streamline processes and free up staff time spent on unprofitable admin tasks. With more time to spend with customers, the inevitable outcome is more sales and happier customers. If either, or both, of these, sounds attractive, contact us, the cloud CRM specialists, today. We are set up for small businesses and will go the extra mile to ensure your small company CRM implementation is a success.