Businesses only exist because of their customers. Therefore, the importance of nurturing customers – old and new – cannot be overstated. CRM (aka Customer Relationship Management) is a vital method of ensuring you extract as much business opportunity as possible out of your customer database. It’s not just a central store for customer information; it is way more crucial than that.
The keyword in the abbreviation is ‘relationship’ as this is by far the essential part. Relationships are what constructs the bridge between your company’s offering and the customer’s needs. Indeed, it is this rapport-building superpower that attracts businesses to CRM in the first place.
What you will learn in this article
- How CRM can strengthen customer relations
- The arguments in favor of CRM adoption
- Eight telltale signs you desperately need CRM
- Top 6 killer ways to improve your customer relationships with CRM
- Quick tips to turbo-charge your customer relations
Strengthening customer relations with CRM
If you are curious about CRM, you most likely already have an interest in improving your key business processes by better managing your contact data and streamlining interaction with customers.
Indeed, the top three motivations for researching CRM use are:
- Contact management (88%)
- Customer interaction tracking (80%)
- Scheduling tasks and reminders (75%)
CRM converts, meanwhile, will happily tell anyone who cares to listen about how CRM has increased sales and helped them better manage their sales pipeline. They are also likely to rave on about:
- Cultivating more sales leads
- Improving the targeting of marketing messaging
- Improving team management
- Running all manner of customer reports
- Easily analyzing data
And they are dead right. A good CRM solution does all of this.
8 telltale signs you urgently need CRM system
Take our quick survey to discover if your company needs CRM. If you answer ‘No’ to any of the questions, then it is time to investigate a CRM solution for your business urgently.
- Do you know where all the customer data is kept?
- Is your database always up to date, including names, email, phone numbers, website, etc.?
- Do you have the ability to see the details of each contact in one place?
- Are you always sure you are contacting the right person?
- Are all your customer interactions logged in one place and accessible to everyone in your organization?
- Do you always know what was discussed the last time your company contacted the customer?
- Do you know the last time your company contacted a customer and if a follow-up call is appropriate?
- Can you access a customer’s buying history in a few clicks?
So, how did that go? How many times did you say ‘No’?
6 ways to improve your customer relationship game with CRM
Most small businesses without CRM will have grave difficulty ensuring they maintain effective contact management. The sad fact is that if you don’t get this fundamental right, it will have a severe adverse effect on your relationship with existing customers and leads.
Let’s now look at how CRM can benefit your business and optimize your communications with contacts, customers, prospects, and leads.
Improved data on your customers
Keeping all your customer information in one place gives you a business edge. You can see at a glance everything you need to know before picking up the phone or sending an email.
Knowledge really is power and makes the business of customer communications much less fraught. The scope can range from business-critical info like contact details to their birthday. Or even a note to enquire about their recent holiday.
One of the most compelling arguments for CRM is the ability to segment your customers. Instead of shouting at a crowd, you can slice your customers into specific segments by category and criteria. Doing this enables a company to better target marketing campaigns.
Segmented lists also enable you to analyze your communication efforts in detail. This is useful to keep track of sales and your lead pool.
Improved customer relations
As well as being an excellent tool to find and cultivate customers, CRM is also a great way to ensure your existing clientele are happy. CRM lets you keep tabs on interaction with customers to ensure they don’t feel neglected. It’s quick and easy to set up reminders about appointments and follow-up calls and emails. And, as you will know already, retaining a customer is a lot cheaper than acquiring a new one.
Improved anticipation of need
If you can view a customer’s purchasing history, you are far more likely to cross-sell or upsell to that customer. Buying habits reveal patterns, so a timely call or email might hit the sweet spot with your customer.
Not having customers wait is a true sign of the professional. A CRM feature you will love is the customizable template library for email, quotes, letters, documents, proposals, and so on. You can draft out an SMS or email and schedule them to be sent out weeks or months ahead of time.
Better privacy compliance
CRM can help you stay on the right side of privacy law. Today, customer privacy has never been more critical. For example, a CRM system compliant with the European Union’s strict GDPR rules can save you from stepping out of line if you sell into Europe.
Quick tips to turbo-charge your customer relationship
Investing in a CRM system is only part of the story. It’s not an end in itself. To optimize your customer relations, it is best to sit down and work out an action plan to transform your communications.
CRM gives you a potent tool at your disposal, so you want to be sure you use every feature to derive the maximum benefit. An action plan should address the following:
- How to build rapport with customers
- How to better manage your portfolio of customers
- How to keep customers in the loop
- How to create added value for them
A good customer relationship is crucial to business success. CRM helps you unlock your full business potential. Contact us today to discover the best CRM solution for your business.