Monday, February 13, 2017

Key Challenges for CRM Marketers and How to Deal with them

Making the most of your CRM system is challenging. And the challenges keep changing with time. However, the larger goals most CRM marketers want to achieve remain more or less the same. For instance, most companies use CRM software to collect, organize, and analyze customer data, so to help make the job of their sales and marketing teams easier. However, with the data collection system getting more complicated, marketers today may face new problems when it comes to using the data to achieve important sales goals. Let’s take a look at the key challenges for CRM marketers and how they should deal with the challenges.

Too much data

Customer relationship management software helps you monitor customer interactions on a number of marketing channels. For instance, you can keep track of your customers’ activities on social media platforms, and find out how much time they are spending on your website, what they are buying, etc. However, how to use this data to your advantage is the real challenge. Too much data, if not organized well, can actually create more confusion. As a marketer, you should find a way to weed out bad leads from the good ones. That’s the challenge here. One solution could be to use simplified CRM software like QuickDesk that lets you turn data into organized client information. You can find out information about a customer’s buying behavior in different stages of a sales cycle. This insight may help you identify good leads and put more focus on them.

Collaborating sales and marketing

While your marketing team is busy making more people interested in your products and services, your sales team is busy in turning your prospects into actual customers. Because both teams are busy, they hardly get time to follow what the other team is doing. But, marketing and sales complement each other. If you do not integrate them, your overall performance may suffer. CRM software provides you the tools to collaborate both teams, but you need to take the steps to integrate. You can overcome this challenge by giving them access to a single dashboard where both can see each other’s progress. For instance, your sales team can see how many leads your marketing team has generated so far. On the other hand, your marketing executives can find out which prospects are finally buying and which are not buying. More importantly, they can see this in real time. That way, you can integrate your sales and marketing teams and bring more transparency into the system. This eventually helps improve you sales and marketing efficiency.

Incorrect data

Imagine the consequences of business decisions taken based on incorrect, outdated data! It is very important to make sure your customer data is 100 percent correct and updated. However, this is not an easy task, because customers are changing locations, jobs, and phone numbers constantly. To prevent wrong, outdated data from entering into your CRM software, you need to have a system in place for validation. You can use data cleansing tools or conduct manual checks from time to time, for best results.

 

To read our previous article, please click here.

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Friday, February 3, 2017

How CRM Helps Improve the Value of Your Business

Even if you have no plans to sell your business in future, you should know the value of it. Measuring the value is the first step towards boosting it further. In fact, most business owners have a wrong estimate of their business value in their mind. The actual value, when they come to know about it, often catches them by surprise. However, the good news is; there are ways to boost the value of your business. And your CRM software can play a major role in boosting your company’s intangible asset value. Here are some useful tips.

Increasing retention rate

When you use CRM to collect and analyze customer data from a single dashboard, it becomes easier to know which customers are happy with your products and services, and which of them aren’t. This now means you can take the necessary steps to retain your happy customers as well as to satisfy your not-so-happy customers. This is a great way to boost your customer retention rate, which again helps improve the value of your business.

Getting new business

While retaining your existing customers, you should also take the steps to reach out to new customers and expand your business. However, finding or nurturing leads is a time consuming process. Simplified CRM software like QuickDesk makes the job easy for you, with features like auto-dialing, DNC screening integration, and the ability to call or send SMS directly from your browser. You can now use the time you saved on other more important tasks, thereby getting closer your goal of improving business value.

Making marketing more effective

CRM software like QuickDesk comes with features that help boost your marketing efficiency. For instance, the software helps you indentify the buying patterns of your existing customers, and thus decide when to launch a marketing campaign, what marketing channels you should utilize for best results. In the end, a more effective marketing strategy helps boost your brand value.

Improving communication

CRM connects your sales team to your marketing team, your on-site employees to your off-site workers. When all your internal departments get instant access to updated customer data, it becomes easy to serve the customer better. Internal communication improves, so does customer satisfaction.  With more and more customers speaking highly of your products and services, the value of your business increases.

The right use of CRM not only helps you expand your customer base, but it also allows you to make sure your customers are happy with your service. In essence, CRM helps enhance your brand reputation and customer lists – all of which pushes your bottom line and increases your company’s intangible asset value.

 

To read our previous article, please click here.

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Thursday, January 19, 2017

How to Use CRM when Marketing to Older Customers

It is a myth that older people are set in their own ways, and they do not want to change brands. The world is changing, so are the older people. Now you can see more dads in their 50s wearing fashionable jeans and tees than ever before. The point here is; older people are more quickly adapting to the new trends than you think. If you are planning to market your products to the older generation, your CRM system can give you the best support. However, for best results, you need to invest in a feature-rich CRM software like QuickDesk, which lets you set goals, monitor prospects, and reach out your target audience faster. Here are some tips on marketing to older customers with CRM.

Identify their preferences

The first thing you need when marketing to any customer group is studying their purchasing behaviours. This is especially true for baby boomers. This is because elderly people have some special preferences. They are often more interested in high-value items, such as houses, cars, and expensive furniture. Also, they tend to pay more attention when you talk about health and wellness. So some products, such as health insurance and retirement savings plans grab their attention faster than any other items do. Of course, your products may not fall in this category, buy when you know their preferences, you are likely to direct your marketing efforts in the right direction. Use your CRM software to study how your older customers behave when it comes to responding to marketing messages. This brings us to the second point.

Personalise your messages

Older people love it when you give them the importance they deserve. Instead of sending a one-size-fits message, consider personalising your marketing messages for a better response rate. For instance, you can include their name and designation in the message or mention about something they are passionate about. This means you need to know their personal details, likes and dislikes, as much as possible, in the first place. CRM keeps track of every customer interaction, which could help you decide how to personalise a marketing message for an older customer. You can also use social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter to approach older customers. Make sure the information you are using for personalization is accurate. The last thing you want to lose a customer only because you mentioned his name wrong in your marketing copy.

Use email marketing

One proven way to get more responses from baby boomers is by running an email marketing campaign. Older people read and respond to marketing emails more often than the Gen-X or Gen-Y customers do. CRM helps you collect, analyse, and organisecustomer data. Now use that information to create focused, personalised emails for your older prospects. Also, cite relevant stats and facts to validate your claims. Older people are more internet-savvy than you think. They often do a thorough online research before buying a product. If you can do the research for them and provide links to websites from where you got the information, your email is more likely to impress them.

To read previous article, please click here.

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Tuesday, January 17, 2017

How CRM Helps in Customer Lifecycle Management

Perhaps you currently use CRM software to collect, analyze and organize your customer data. Did you notice how customer behavior changes at different stages of a sales cycle?

Similar to products, your customers also have a lifecycle, and they behave differently at different stages. Thus, your marketing strategy and the way you engage with your customers should vary accordingly. Simplified CRM software such as QuickDesk helps track customer interactions at every stage of the customer lifecycle. These insights enable you to devise effective customer relationship management strategies. There are mainly five stages in the customer lifecycle. Let’s take a closer look at each stage.

Stage 1: Reach

Your aim at this stage is to reach out to your potential customers and gain their attention. At this stage, customers want to know more about your products and services. You should use multiple marketing channels such as social media and print advertising to get your brand message across. With features like auto-dialing, sending SMS broadcast to multiple contacts and DNC screening integration, QuickDesk helps you reach out to your prospects faster.

Stage 2: Acquisition

Here, your primary goal is to collect the prospect’s contact details, including contact number, email, and social profile. At this stage, the customer is interested in your products but is not ready to make a purchase yet. To move customers towards the next stage, your salespeople can start by collecting contact information of customers and entering them into your CRM system. Once you have collected and organized the data, you can use them to implement ongoing communication with your customers through cold calling, email marketing, and social media marketing.

Stage 3: Conversion

Now comes the most coveted phase – conversion. At this phase, the prospect becomes your customer as they make their first purchase. This is your chance to impress the customer by providing them with a great buying experience. If you are selling online, make sure your website is easy to navigate and your payment gateway is secure. You can use your CRM software at this stage to create invoices and send quotations. You can also track the behavior of your customers and find out whether they were satisfied with the purchasing experience.

Stage 4: Retention

At this stage, your aim should be to build a long-term relationship with the first-time buyer. Excellent customer service and after-sales support can help you obtain repeat business from your existing customers. To manage customer relationships at this phase, you need to study your customer’s behaviors and use different marketing techniques for different customers. For instance, you can retain some customers by announcing a loyalty program, while others may be impressed by the good after-sales support. Using a CRM system will provide you with enough information to make an informed decision.

Stage 5: Advocacy

This is the final stage of the customer lifecycle. At this stage, your loyal customers not only continue buying from you, but also promote your brand through word-of-mouth recommendations. Some may even post positive reviews of your products online that will boost your reputation.

For best results, use your CRM software to gain insights into customer behavior and take action at every stage of the customer lifecycle.

To read our previous article, please click here.

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Wednesday, January 11, 2017

How to Train Your Salespeople to Use CRM

Buying a CRM system is only the first step to increasing your sales. Even if you buy the best CRM software, you may not be able to maximize results if your salespeople are not trained to use it. Most salespeople view CRM as an additional task rather than an opportunity to achieve better results. They choose to skip the learning process and use the time to focus on selling instead. It is difficult to convince them that using CRM software can actually help them sell more. This is why training salespeople to use CRM can be challenging. However, with the right approach and a little planning, you can make the process easier. Here are some useful tips for training your sales team to embrace CRM.

Choose the right tool

The first thing you can do is to choose an easy-to-use CRM system like QuickDesk. Ensure that the CRM software is optimized for sales representatives – it should contain all the necessary features for your sales process, without having unnecessary features that may make it harder for your sales team to use. Next, you should be able to integrate the CRM software with other software systems in your organization, such as your marketing automation software. Lastly, the system should be easy to navigate, as well as provide sales forecasts and details on customer interactions.

Tell your sales team why they need CRM

CRM can be highly beneficial for your company. However, your salespeople will be more invested in using CRM if they know how it would benefit them personally. For example, if they know that the CRM helps them analyze selling trends, identify potential buyers and visualize sales forecasts, they will definitely be interested. Ultimately, you need to tell your salespeople how the new system can help them sell faster and more efficiently – salespeople are most concerned with improving their performance and sales results.

Provide mobile access

Salespeople often need to travel to meet clients and prospects. Thus, it is important for your CRM solution to be easily accessible from any location. Look for CRM apps that are optimized for mobile devices. When choosing a mobile CRM solution, look for essential features such as real-time calling, auto dialing, recorded history and automated activity tracker, lead and task management and Do-Not-Call (DNC) filtering.

Choose the right time for training

Most salespeople are reluctant to adopt CRM as they think learning a new technology will take up time which they can use for selling. One way to reduce rejection is by choosing the right time for training. You should organize training sessions at the beginning of a quarter when there is less pressure for salespeople. Conducting CRM training sessions at the end of a selling period is never a good idea!

Reward your sales team

One way to encourage your sales team to adopt CRM is to reward them for good performance. If someone in the team has adopted the new system quickly, you can make him a team leader and highlight his achievements, to create a positive influence on other team members and encourage them to use CRM. These are little rewards that can go a long way in motivating your sales team to adopt CRM.

To read our previous article, please click here.

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Tuesday, January 3, 2017

5 Reasons Healthcare Companies should Use CRM

Healthcare companies often struggle to keep records of their interactions with patients, non-patient customers, and physicians. Another major obstacle to their growth is the lack of an organized system to measure ROI. In addition, they also face challenges in implementing workflow automation, ensuring data security, managing compliance and maintaining customer engagement. Simplified CRM Software such as QuickDesk provides a one-stop solution to these problems, which is why more healthcare providers are adopting CRM. If you are still if investing in CRM is worth the cost, here are five reasons why your healthcare organization should adopt CRM.

1. Automated workflows

With CRM, you can automate several repetitive, yet important, tasks, such as preserving medical documents including prescriptions and referrals. Moreover, your staff will be able to access patient data from a single platform. Quick access to accurate and organized patient data will save time, increase productivity and improve service quality, eventually increasing your customer retention rate.

2. Make billing easier

CRM software helps improve your billing system. With CRM, you can keep track of every financial transaction with your patients or vendors. This will help you have a clear picture of your finances without much hassle. You can also use analytics functions to track your accounts payables and accounts receivables.

3. Enhances data security

Healthcare organizations need to have a system in place for protecting sensitive business data and financial information, as they are more susceptible than other businesses to cyber security attracts. CRM software utilizes advanced encryption protocols to tighten data security. With CRM, you can choose who should be given access to your sensitive data and when. Using cloud-based CRM, you can even store your data in the cloud.

4. Improves marketing efficiency

CRM helps you identify your customer groups with the most potential and predict the products that customers are likely to buy. This information helps you plan your marketing campaigns well. You will be able to direct your marketing efforts to customers who are more likely to buy, rather than splurging on one-size-fits-all marketing campaigns. CRM would also help you find out how to target your potential customers, which channels of marketing you should use and the products that you should promote. Overall, this helps to improve your marketing efficiency.

5. Improves customer satisfaction

Knowledge is power. With access to centralized, organized patient data, doctors can quickly check a patient’s medical history and provide advice accordingly. Patients do not need to wait a long time for their doctors to search old records. This improves the communication between patients and doctors. Some CRMs even allow patients to schedule appointments and check medical records on their own. All these help boost customer satisfaction and the organization’s reputation in the long run.

CRM software can also help healthcare companies meet regulatory compliance. Negligence in maintaining patient data often results in penalties for hospitals and nursing homes. A robust CRM system will help healthcare companies preserve patient records in an organized way, eliminating or reducing fines and penalties due to data mishandling.

 

To read our previous article, click here.

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Sunday, December 25, 2016

5 unconventional ways to use CRM

If you think CRM software can only be used to improve sales, think again. Most businesses fail to unleash the full potential of this tool. With a little innovative thinking, you will find much more ways to use CRM to your advantage. CRM software lets you collect, organise, and analyse your customer data. Here are five unconventional ways to use this valuable information.

Predict future purchases

A thorough analysis of your customers’ purchase history may help you predict how many of them are going to buy your products in the next season. You can gain insight into your customers’ buying pattern and predict their possible purchases. The analysis would also help you identify any potential risk of losing customers well in advance. That way, you can prepare for any increase or decrease in your future sales.

Monitor your brand reputation

Building brand reputation is possible in the short-term, but it is even harder to maintain a strong reputation over time as it requires consistent effort. If it keeps fluctuating, you should keep an eye on the variable graph at all times. However, knowing how your customers perceive your brand is not easy. Simplified CRM software such as QuickDesk lets you track customer interactions and monitor customer feedback on social media. This helps you to get a clear picture of your brand reputation on an ongoing basis. With feedback such as comments from existing and potential customers across different platforms, you can improve your audience engagement strategies and drive better results.

Identify customers with the most potential

When you run email campaigns or social media campaigns, you may receive a lot of replies from potential customers. While there may be many people who express interest, not all of them would eventually become customers and make a purchase. If you can identify those who are most likely to buy from your company, you can send them a promotional offer to close the deal sooner. However, how would you identify such customers? Your CRM software can help you do this. By collecting data using your CRM software, you can identify which of your potential customers are more likely to make a purchase. Building a brand loyalty helps the business in the long run.

Collaborate and grow

One common reason many projects fail is the lack of collaboration. If your organisation stores data in different databases, you could be hampering the growth of your company. You should ensure that different departments in your company are linked to each other and all of them have access to your customer data on a centralised platform. For instance, you can allow all departments to access your CRM data so that they have access to the necessary information that can help them make informed decisions quickly.

Build partnerships

CRM software allows you to identify potential opportunities to form business development partnerships. Some CRM systems come with features like pipeline reporting and spreadsheet exports. You can use those features to monitor transactions with your customers, vendors, and contractors, and then identify which of these relationships have the potential to become long-term partnerships.

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