Customer relationship management (CRM) software is the gateway from your customers into the business. It’s the component part of your business software suite which manages interactions with potential customers through your sales pipeline. From lead to prospect, a prospect to opportunity and from an opportunity to close.
This process (typically referred to as sales force automation) is controlled by the salespeople in your organisation and should be the main tool of their trade.
However, a really great customer relationship management (CRM) software doesn’t just stop at sales force automation.
In this blog, we have outlined the 3 main components of successful CRM software, from marketing automation to customer service solutions.
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Component #1 – Marketing Automation
Before your salespeople even get their hands on a prospect, it is likely that your marketing team are working hard to identify the best leads and warm them up for the sales force.
However, many marketing responsibilities are boring and repetitive. Tasks such as customer segmentation and profiling, email marketing and data cleansing can be laborious and tedious. Marketing automation exists to help systemise many of these tasks and to enable the marketing agents to invest their time in more meaningful work – like creating collateral or organising events.
A good marketing software will have these key features:
- Effective multi-channel campaign management – to help you streamline marketing campaigns across your website, email, events and social
- Collaborative tools like task allocation and reporting – to enable better working between sales and marketing departments
- Lead reporting and analytics
- Landing pages and forms – so that anyone completing a form on your site posts directly into your system for follow up
- Delivers full email marketing automation – from creation to execution
Component #2 – Sales Force Automation
Neither marketing nor sales operate in isolation, so why should your software? If marketing automation and sales force automation are completed in the same system then the marketing team can push successfully warmed up leads straight through to the sales team. Sales teams can analyse campaign outcomes and crucially access campaigns directly from the customer record so they know what information the customer has been served.
- Territory management – to help your salespeople make the most out of their sales territories
- Opportunity management – to track prospects through the various opportunity statuses through to closed-won
- Forecasting – assigning % probability to each prospect in order to accurately forecast sales values and successes
- Quote generation – right through to order creation
- Incentive management – to calculate commissions
- Intuitive Upsell – allow salespeople to maximise their success by offering to upsell based upon previously purchased items or typical combinations
Component #3 – Customer Service Solutions / Case Management
Of course, your relationship with the customer doesn’t end after you have closed the deal. There will be order fulfilment, customers services to be completed and often, issues to resolve.
In order to get the full 360-degree picture of your customer journey from marketing and sales to experience right through to after-sales care, you really need your CRM software to handle case management and customer service solutions as well.
A great case management solution will allow your customers to:
- Log cases themselves via email, phone or website
- Track responses from request to resolve
- Reorder products or services from a customer portal
Great case management software will allow you to:
- Effectively and speedily respond to customers
- Track interactions back and forth between customer and service rep within one system and against the customer record
- Track time and materials incurred against cases
- Reporting based on outcomes
Imagine the power behind running all three components from a single unified system. You would instantly increase customer satisfaction, reduce costs by allowing customers to self-serve where possible. Increase staff engagement and collaboration, increase efficiency and productivity, increase profitability through quicker sales close and better upsell management.
What’s not to like?
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