Your Customer Relationship Management strategy. 7 things to consider

CRM is an essential component of any successful business and encompasses the entire organization. It’s not just a tool such as Salesforce or Hubspot, it has to include people and process as well.

Here are just 7 of the many things to consider when developing your CRM strategy.

1. ENSURE there IS a plan

You may have launched into Hubspot or even Salesforce without first developing a relationship strategy or plan for how to use it. How will you engage with your prospects and customers? what channels will you use? how often? How will your measure? It’s an integral part of your business strategy and processes so you need to set goals.

2. Take a customer-centric view

It is all about customer relationships after all, so you need to meet their expectations and how you can add to value to the relationship. Consider sending a survey to customers asking how they’d like to be communicated with. It may surprise you.

3. Select the right tools

One you have a plan, first review the tools you are already using as that avoids the disruption to your business involved with implementing something new. If you decide you do need something new, spend time assessing the solutions, talking with providers and ensure it meets the goals outlined in your plan.

4. Define your processes

You have the tools and people but have you documented your processes? This stage covers how you’ll use the tool to capture, communicate and report customer engagement. You’ll need to establish processes to record engagement through your website, trigger a follow-up call or email, record a deal and process leads in the customer journey. And don’t forget about analytics.

5. CRM is not the responsibility of the IT department

Your IT team is critical in providing the infrastructure to support the business. However it’s not their role to manage relationships with customers or ‘own’ how the CRM tool is implemented or used. As a marketer, it is your job to understand what your customers want.

6. Management leadership and employee buy-in

Digital transformation can be tough and even more difficult or ultimately fail if you don’t have management and employee buy-in. Build it and they will come does not apply. Also, if you are putting what the business wants before the customer, they will look elsewhere.

7. CRM is not a one-time project

Customer Relationship Management is a business philosophy, not a project or a piece of technology. Look at your company culture, processes, systems and frameworks. Changing systems will have little impact on how your customers experience your organization.

There is a lot more to consider when implementing a CRM solution than the few items here. I’d suggest getting in touch for a chat to discuss what may work best for your business and budget.