5 Steps for Successful CRM Start

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is now a widely used term by business people. Different sources suggest different definitions, but I assume the reader is already familiar with CRM system therefore I will avoid adding another definition here. Basically, it consists of three main parts:

  • Marketing – Run campaigns and Generate leads
  • Sales – Qualify leads and Convert opportunities
  • Support – Serve customers and Manage cases

However, I have news for those who think CRM is just an online solution. Well, it partially may be true. Modern CRM is a process that sets the stage for communication between a business and its customers. The more transparent this communication is, the more bonding the relationship becomes. Business owners should align their goals and mission statements such that sales and customer service employees make the best use of CRM to deliver the core value to the customers.

  1. Play with the system and contact the potential vendors inquiring about possible customizations that befit your workflow. Most of the CRM solutions provide flexibility depending on your organizational workflow.
  2. Conduct a research so that the new system will easily integrate with other sections of your business such as accounting, human resources, project management, payroll, etc.
  3. Ensure your staff is comfortable with it. Especially, sales and support teams should be trained to deliver the best customer experience. Usually, providers offer free trainings during the first month or two so do not forget to contact them directly and ask.
  4. Learn how to efficiently use reports. You can pull out the most valuable data on lead, customer profile, case management, marketing campaigns, etc. Each report serves different purposes and helps business owners to clearly see where they lack quality.
  5. Take advantage of built-in message center to keep in contact with existing and prospective customers. Almost all CRM systems now support e-mail and social media platforms integration.

Apart from being a great communication tool, CRM can help you understand unique customer needs, decide which products and/or services are profitable. Nowadays, everyone is familiar with 20/80 rule which is 20% customers make up for 80% of your net profit. There are number of reports you can run within CRM which helps you make clear decisions about whether to implement a new feature or a product or vice versa, cease or decrease the particular types.