CRM: Hit Your Target

Quit tossing out your business darts hoping they stick, and find a target worth aiming at. James Shores talks CRM's, and how to put your information and interactions to to work for you.

HI, I’m James, this is Whiteboard Wednesday, and today we’re going to talk about…

C.R.M. — Customer Relationship Management.

Now this is a little outside of our usual inventory talk, but this is something that’s really helpful for any business, small-medium sized, to help them succeed and use their information to their betterment.

So, let’s start with treating this board as if its a dart board. Too many companies, maybe yours included, are just throwing darts at the board, hoping something sticks, hoping something works, and that maybe they’ll get that bullseye. They’re not really trying.

Whereas the point of a CRM is to tie together your different aspects and elements of your company—and it may differ from business to business— get them all on the same page, get them all using the same information relative to your customers and your interactions with potential customers, so that you can hone in where your market is, who your target is, and then shoot for that bullseye.

Now you won’t hit it overtime, but it’s really going to help you focus in.

Let’s just use a few brief examples of how this can help.

So with your Sales side: a CRM helps keep your consistent contacts, because you’re not going to receive triple and duplicates of information relative to potential client, on a lead, you’re able to track it all in the system. A lot of CRM’s—they vary—are cloud based, so you’re able to access your information when and where you need it.

From a Marketing side: it provide’s automation tools. Let’s say it helps with email blasts to send out to potential customers. Again, you’re not sending out to too many people, or people that don’t want it, or customer who have already purchased your product and are not being spammed. You don’t want to ruin that relationship.

Social. Maybe your company has more of a social element with it, on all of the different networks—Facebook, Twitter—you may not, but if you do, this can help connect and show, through your CRM, what actions you’re taking, so that everyone has access to this information, so they know what each department is doing.

On your Orders side: they can look at the trends of what’s being purchased, when it was purchased, how much was purchased, and all of these kind of tie together, so that, you know, Sales should be able to look at the orders, so they can also see the trends and know what customers are doing, know what’s selling, what’s not selling.

Over here on Support: a CRM can help with the ticket side so that they can quickly assess what calls are coming in, what the previous contact was, if there was any, good or bad, and what follow-up will be. So that again, you’ll have consistent notes, and so that there is a consistency in the way that you interact with your customers.

And then Accounts: let’s say that there is some follow-up on your end, maybe they need some kind of trouble-shooting, maybe they need some kind of billable service that you provide. You’re able to follow-up with all of your notes, what was covered, what was said on your end and the customer end, so that when you have another follow-up call, maybe an account is closed, maybe it’s added to, you know. It’s not on paper, it’s not something you have to hunt down.

It’s the point of a CRM, and like with Fishbowl, there’s all this information that you can get lost in, there’s all this information that feels like “I don’t know what to do with it”, and a CRM can help you manage all that. And the best way it’s going to work is if everyone is on board, because they’re all feeding their information to the center point, so you’re all aiming at the same target.

So, wrapping up, we don’t want to treat our customers as if it’s just his giant dartboard, and we’re throwing at it hoping it sticks, hoping it gets somewhere near a bullseye. With Customer Relationship Management, we can really hone in, every department can get on board and be in sync, so that we’re all targeted towards the exact same goal, and keep track of that information.

Remember, good data leads to good business decisions.

I’m James, this is Whiteboard Wednesday, see you again next time.

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