While running your own business comes with its own unique set of challenges, managing and maintaining customer relationships is still a must—and this rings true whether you’re a one-person start-up or owner and CEO of a large enterprise. Yet, knowing where to start might prove difficult—there are so many interactions that occur during the day, across a growing number of devices, and organizing them in a way that makes sense—and results in actionable insights—for your business can prove tricky and time-consuming at best.
Thankfully, you don’t have to start from scratch. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software helps you keep track of new and existing contacts, organizing them all into one centralized location, ultimately taking the guesswork out of lead conversions, project status, sales assignments, and more. However, when successfully deployed, it gives entrepreneurs more than just their sanity back. It also proves an invaluable resource in optimizing team efficiency, boosting sales performance, and streamlining communication efforts business-wide—allowing owners to focus more time and effort into growing the business. Unless you’re in the technology industry, you may not be familiar with all the benefits CRM has to offer. To this end, the Salesforce e-book “The Entrepreneur’s Guide to Finding the Right CRM” may be an excellent resource. In keeping with the e-book, here are some guidelines Salesforce offers for getting your feet wet with CRM:
CRM Helps You Close More Deals, Quicker
Your sales team is busy, and keeping up with communications across e-mail, social media, and digital networking is a huge feat. The centralized location provided by CRM allows all associates to log in to the same portal, manage contacts from within the same interface, and communicate instantly as opportunities arise, so they never miss a beat, and are always ready to connect, funneling leads through and assigning them instantly with the click of a button. Best of all? With best-in-class CRM systems, they can access the information from anywhere, at any time.
CRM Boosts Customer Personalization
It’s an interesting paradox: The Internet of Things (IoT) is increasingly expansive, and customers are communicating across more channels than ever before, yet demand for personalization and tailored content has never been greater. Therefore, when they call your sales desk, they’re expecting your agents to remember the last time they spoke. What was their issue? What were your recommendations? What’s the status of their project? Relying on data spread throughout various legacy systems, even the most well-meaning employee may be stuck with an awkward pause, sifting through both electronic records and stacks of paperwork to find the answers. With CRM, everything from call logs to quotes can be stored and associated with specific points of contact, equipping agents with the insights they need to deliver superior customer service.
CRM Makes User Adoption Simple
As an entrepreneur, you know how busy your teams are, and how disruptive technology integrations, even the most advantageous ones, can often mean a break in workflow. The best CRM solutions integrate with apps you already use, including your preferred email provider (think Gmail, Outlook, MailChimp, and more), as well as proven Google apps such as Drive, Contacts, and Calendar, so your employees can continue working in the environments and applications they’re used to, with the added bonus of simplified contact management.
When you’re the boss, you know more than anyone how much business longevity depends on maximizing efficiency. When teams are working at top speed, utilizing excellent communication both internally and with customers, there’s no limit to what they can accomplish. Leveraging CRM software to keep this engine running helps ensure that your two most valuable assets—your employees and your customers—are protected and sustained long into the future.
Young, Heike,” 7 Things Entrepreneurs Should Know About Finding the Right CRM,” August 29, 2015, https://medium.com/grow-for-growing-companies/7-things-entrepreneurs-should-know-about-finding-the-right-crm-4776f49fb712