CRM – It’s not all about the Customer

CRM – It’s not all about the Customer

Well it is, but the real essence of a well-executed CRM solution is the visibility it can provide across your organization’s business functions to drive correct and increased levels of customer engagement – from targeted marketing, predictive sales, establishing user groups or simply tracking service agreements. If you do not have a single pane of truth about the status of your customer and an ability to predict key stages in the lifecycle of a customer then you still have a contact management system………even if you have invested in a leading CRM solution.

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) solutions are for any customer-facing department from capturing leads, generating opportunities through to repeat-business customers; in short CRM needs to work for sales, marketing, customer service – it can even support Finance, push further online sales and increase social media coverage. All-in-all CRM can drive a fully engaged customer experience of your company (and not just for your customers but more on that later).

Your CRM solution should:

  • Provide a single view of customer status across every department – from marketing to support, after-sales and prompt the next engagement;
  • Deliver predictive business analytics to anticipate your customer’s needs and future requirements
  • Ensure that relevant and ‘personal’ touch is delivered with every customer engagement, every time
  • Support pipeline growth, business forecasting and revenue and retention
  • Drive highly targeted marketing programs and nurture streams through vertical, persona and theme-based segmentation
  • Integrate marketing communications and social media to keep customers engaged, even on mobile devices
  • Support milestone events during key periods, such as warranty and service agreements

CRM – It’s all about Sales
The justification for CRM will always be found in improving Sales productivity, from enhanced customer profiling to accurate engagement-based forecasting – fewer ‘tea and coffee’ meetings, more account development meetings tied to $$$$s.

CRM is all about visibility and predictability, seeing gaps in forecasts and pushing pipeline velocity to ensure pure contingency every time. As important are the formats, your sales teams want and expect to be able to access decision support information about opportunities from any mobile device apps and they expect to socialize updates and information through integrated media channels, such as twitter and your website. Every sales engagement needs to have a meaningful business outcome.

CRM – It’s all about Marketing
For many organizations any CRM project usually starts as a two-step affair between Marketing and Sales until the full benefits of the platform are realized in latter stages of the deployment, i.e. bringing service and support and other administrative functions on-board with extended visibility of customer status.

For Marketing it’s all about extending and nurturing engagement and showing how its lead generation activities contribute to both sales pipeline, forecast and customer retention.
Correctly configured Marketing will have a persona driven view of both prospects and customers and can therefore commence highly personalized and role-relevant engagements at every stage of the customer lifecycle. As such the insight Marketing will gain through program response analytics will allow their activities to hit home every time. From the assets used for lead generation to loyalty initiatives, such as User Groups, anything designed to engage a customer in a value driven relationship.

This step into zero-moment marketing will benefit every department, from product development looking for field trial candidates to sales seeking a customer advocate for a reference call. The work Marketing will undertake, fine-tuned with integrated Marketing Automation, will ensure that every champion, influencer and decision maker is identified and their preferences for content and engagement registered. Very quickly how your organization engages will define the value the customer experiences.

CRM – It’s all about your Business
This single pane transparency also translates as collaboration so as the CRM platform extends across your business so customer service analysts can help customers with a view to full and current status, finance clerks can flag issues, in short the entire company has the information it needs to solve customer issues faster, deliver consistent services, leverage more communication channels in order to increase engagement, retain customers and identify new revenue opportunities.

CRM – It’s all about Zero2Ten
Working with a strategic Microsoft Partner, such as Zero2Ten, any C-Level executive can take the first steps to redefining that one recurring question, ‘how to improve customer retention’ and it’s all about engagement and experience. Keep interactions timely and relevant and customer-facing staff will increasingly enjoy meaningful and successful engagements; in short if every engagement is relevant, it’s winning.

But one final thought, as this Blog post can only offer so much, with every customer engagement their experience will become more and more, beneficial to your organization and your staff. A well deployed CRM solution should always deliver improved end-user experience to your staff, driving their success, increasing their productivity with a familiar interface through their choice of mobile device when ‘in-the-field’. Give your staff this and you will increase employee retention too.

Zero2Ten has the ‘experience’ and years of engagement to make those differences to your business.


Microsoft Dynamics CRM Blog