Work Smarter and Win more Deals with the Right CRM Tool for Your Company
What is a CRM?
CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management. And, CRM tools do just that. They allow you to maintain detailed records of your customers and potential customers, keeping all of their contact, opportunity (deal) and behavioral information in one location.
Within your CRM, you should be able to tell when Joe Smith first became a prospect, first became a paying customer, where he lives, what he likes, how much money he spends with your company, how he prefers to communicate with your company, and hundreds of other details.
Basically, a quality CRM is the connective intelligence for your Marketing and Sales teams. Without a tool like this in place, and you miss out on that actionable intelligence, leading to less opportunity, fewer deals, and lost revenue.
What Are the Different CRMs You Can Use?
This CRM focuses primarily on customer information – contact information, purchase history, etc. This is a base-level type of CRM that can be utilized by Sales, Marketing, Customer Service and Business Development departments.
Example CRM: Shopify
This CRM is mostly used for managing potential customers’ interactions through the Sales process. When was this prospect last contacted? What kind of information do they need? What is the next step needed to move them through the Sales process, and who on your Sales team is best suited to deliver that to them?
Example CRM: Salesforce
These tools look into different data points to identify customer purchase patterns and trends and are helpful for Sales and Marketing departments to develop future strategies and campaigns.
Example CRM: Zoho
This combines the Operational and Analytical systems to give you a holistic view of your customers, both current consumers and prospects, to identify which Marketing campaigns and tactics are directly affecting Sales and revenue in the short- and long-term.
Example CRM: Hubspot
Without a CRM…
If you don’t currently use a CRM you’re probably wondering how you would apply its use to your day-to-day, and what impact it really has on revenue generation?
The bottom line is, without a CRM setup and tailored to your company’s specific needs, you’re losing money. Here’s why:
1. You’re losing the details.
You can’t remember every detail about your prospects. I’m sure you think you’ve worked out a fail-safe process that enables you to stay on top of every prospect and every client, remembering every interaction and fine point of your relationship. But, you haven’t. You’re forgetting details about people, deals, conversations because you’re busy. Even if you’re attempting to write things down, they’re easily lost in your Moleskine notebook or in the Notes program on your laptop.
But it doesn’t have to be that way! Keep track of all the important (and not-so-important) records of your customers, and you will inherently have a better, more trustworthy relationship with them.
To err is human, so make a CRM tool do the work. Give your old system of sticky notes a break.
2. You’re losing time.
Your communication process isn’t centralized (especially emails). Since most communication is done digitally now, you might think you don’t need a centralized host for keeping track of who said what, and when. Here, too, you’re wrong. Yes, you can search and filter your inbox. Yes, you can dig through Skype archives or version histories on Dropbox or Google Drive, but how much harder does that all become when you’re trying to find information from different sources on your desktop versus your mobile phone? Or, when you need an email that your Sales Director sent to confirm a message that came from your Accounting Dept?
Make it easy. Keeping all communications associated with the prospect or client they’re being relayed to (instead of by the method they’re being relayed or by the individuals doing the relaying) means that you’ll never misspeak, repeat or contradict a message another member of your team delivered.
Not only will this make your team stronger, but it also protects your brand, which brings me to my next point…
3. You’re losing their faith in your brand.
I wrote in an earlier blog that above all else, people tend to remember the way you make them feel. And, the best way to deliver a strong, consistent, brand experience is to establish communication processes around what your audience tells you they like. What is their preferred method of communication? Do they want frequent, value-offer emails? Or, do they prefer flash sales delivered through social media?
Using a CRM will not let you identify individuals’ preferences for marketing tactics, however, over time you’ll learn what your customer base engages with and what marketing activities generate the greatest return for you.
Adopting company-wide communication processes also keeps your brand messaging consistent and makes your brand stronger.
4. You’re losing actionable insights.
Use a qualified CRM to identify where individual prospects and customers are within the Buyer’s Journey. Do they need more information on a particular product or service? Do they need a reminder about a product or service they’ve enjoyed in the past? Do they deserve some type of reward for loyal behavior? Speak to them not only as individuals, but also as individuals within a particular information-seeking journey. You’ll generate far more engagement, purchases and brand loyalty, and usually shorten the sales cycle.
5. You’re losing intelligence.
What is your most successful marketing channel? Or, what is your most successful marketing campaign? Does it vary year-to-year or season-to-season? Who is your most profitable customer? Does your company experience the 80/20 rule? Or, maybe you see more a 60/40 or 90/10 split?
Knowing answers to these questions is key to being a successful marketer and a growing, revenue-positive business. And, identifying key metrics are the only way to begin to find these answers.
And, sure, without a CRM in place, you can gather a number of different metrics from your Accounting Department’s P&L sheets, your Marketing Department’s Google Analytics reports, or your Sales Team’s sales quotas and quarterly performance reports. But, you have other things to do, too. Save yourself the time, hassle and guesswork of having to pull in data from dozens of different sources and try to mash it all together to make sense of it.
How Do You Know Which CRM to Use and How to Use it?
There’s no one-size-fits-all CRM. The decision comes down to your company’s and customer’s specific wants and needs. For example, RUNNER is a certified Hubspot partner agency. As an inbound marketing agency, we use the Hubspot CRM to manage our leads and prospects. Many of our customers use Salesforce CRM, some use Hubpot’s CRM, and others use various other CRM solutions tailored to their industries.
If you think you need a CRM and want an expert opinion on the ideal solution for your business and how to get started, give us a call or send us a message to let us know what you need. We’re happy to help!