I recently worked with a client who had a CRM at their organization but they were using it as a glorified rolodex. When I asked them why they had not taken the product to the next level, they asked me why should they? They wanted to know the benefits.
Keeping track of your customers is one way to guarantee more sales. It’s such a simple thing. Understand what they want, advise them on what’s available, offer them good pricing and support, and you make sales. However that assumes you’ve kept good track of past purchases, wishes, preferences, issues or concerns.
It is amazing how knowing that a customer isn’t fond of a certain color or style and that you remember it helps to finish the deal. Your customer feels they are no longer just a number in your accounting system – they are someone you care about and want to help.
CRM (Customer Relationship Management) tools help to keep track of these small but oh so important details. It doesn’t matter which tool you use (of course, I prefer ACT). What is important is the discipline to use it at all. Nothing in means nothing out.
Once you put in place a process and come up with a method of using that process, it just becomes a routine. And after a while, you begin to see the results. Dramatically. We’ve seen it happen time and time again.
There are other benefits of keeping customer details in one place. Take for example large organizations. Sales suggests a product or service. Operations is responsible for the customer after the sale is made. Marketing is trying to create a message so that Sales has customers. Customer service wants to make sure that the customer is happy with their purchases. But each group can occasionally be caught up in their daily grind. The messages about the customer are there in each “silo” but may not necessarily be in one place for all to see. This can even be true in smaller organizations. There simply isn’t enough time in the day. That’s where a good CRM can help.
All you have to do is ensure the information is captured and kept with the customer record. Then everyone is on the same page. The customer benefits. The company benefits. Period. It’s not magic. Several words can describe it: discipline, order, efficiency, collaboration, customer experience. You get the idea.
So if you don’t have a CRM – get one. If you do have one, use it for goodness sake!