Importance of CRM in the Business World

Business Conrner[CRM, branding and promotion, Data retention, Customer Relationship Management, sales and marketing, Data analysis]

The central idea behind every business enterprise is just one. Serving another entity and in return, getting a steady income. Every other idea, including Customer Relationship Management (CRM in short) builds around this one central theme.

With practically everything hinged around customer, it’s a no-brainer that they stand at the centre of every business efforts, be it about getting them, retaining them or facilitating their needs in time. Right from a start-up to an SME to finally an established entity and a brand, everyone wants to retain ever increasing number of customers to ensure growth and prosperity. In this race for growth and stability, some take the traditional and time-tested way, and some take the new-age way with both likely to give results albeit sometimes with marked differences.

On the question of why Customer Relationship Management, and its importance in the world of business, the following could be some of the reasons:

Retaining customers is far easier and cheaper than getting newer ones. A satisfied customer is far likely to pay heed to a marketer than a new convert who may come with set ideas which may take time to dislodge.

Customers once retained and managed well result in increased sales and more customers besides getting healthy reviews and the right suggestions and ideas to increase quantum of business. A satisfied customer is a live asset as important as production, marketing and HR is to an organization. They remain the only and central reason behind the existence of an organization.

Newer offerings and planned ones can first be confirmed and tested among known customers before launching them in the market. The first set of folks to validate a product/ service are existing customer and if they give their honest opinion, there is every possibility that the marketer may just get the exercise right!

Customer loyalty, a state every marketer aspires for, comes in handy during tough economic conditions or with increasing competition! Those loyal can be expected to continue soliciting the marketer and keep the latter’s business running. In time, with the economy looking up, things could change and it could be payback time!

On how a CRM system gets developed, essentially it consists of the steps mentioned below. These are universal to the idea irrespective of CRM being an idea or a product or solution.

Gathering of data on consumers and their spending and consumption patterns

Everyone from a seller under the streetlight to high-end big-spending marketer has his/ her/ their details about the right set of customers with likely spending and consumption patterns. This helps identify the sales pipeline and the likely next course of action.

Gathered data is arranged in a particular order to derive spending and buying patterns.

Patterns thus derived be noted and readied for the right opportunity.

Also, in sectors and section of the market where consumption seems skewed, a study can be conducted to know what lacks in the marketing efforts, and remedies either be executed or be planned

When the right time comes about, the stored data be used to promote goods, services and ideas. Besides, information on new launches could also be brought out.

Data generated from the immediate above exercise be collated to detect patterns which if positive are encouraged and if not, be tweaked for the right effect. These could indicate many, many ideas about the existing products and what can be done.

CRM, the solution or product comes into play to boost CRM, the idea for reasons including the following:

Data retention! CRM solutions keep track of every detail of the consumer right from personal details to buying preferences, time of the year, quantity and all possible variations. These get stored for as long as the marketer wants it.

Data analysis to know trends of sales. Data in CRM helps understand trends in sales either year-wise, month-wise, season-wise or in any other format that the client considers necessary.

Data analysis to know customer profiles and peculiarities. Customers have their own set of likes and peculiarities which cannot be gauged in a standard format and need to be seen on a case to case basis. These all the same, are important if one is to succeed in business. An effective CRM can help gauge these down to quite a bit of detail.

Introduce the right products at the right time or tweaking existing ones: By analysing the trends that a CRM brings out on feeding all the available data, a marketer is left with enough information which shows when and how new products can be introduced or an existing one re-introduced with enough changes and tweaks.

Allocate the right resources within the organization to enhance customer satisfaction: Sales is a dedicated activity due to which an organization ultimately survives. It’s in most cases, the only earning source. The marketer thus needs to allocate essential resource from his/ her/ their existing pool to see to it that sales increases. How much resource, when and of what qualification is something that becomes clear only with the CRM’s output.

Take steps to aid in conversions including those of fence-sitters: These days, practically everything that gets sold has alternatives. A client is thus spoilt for alternatives. That being the scenario, conversions take time with quite a few would-be clients turning into fence-sitters perennially on the lookout for better deals. In such a scenario, getting the right information at the right time helps a marketer introduce the right products with the right features which could aid in bringing clients over to the side of the marketer and stay that way.

Know if the marketing and sales efforts are in the right direction: Marketing, be it digital or old-world is an activity which takes time, efforts and quite a bit of resource. If the same does not go as planned or the result leaves a lot to be desired, the marketers being losing on time and resources, may also lose precious clients besides even reputation in some cases. To avoid this, a system which pin-points where the slack exists is of great importance to any marketer. In today’s fast-moving markets, this detail can come only when a dedicated CRM is in place.

Know if the branding and promotion as an exercise: CRM also records the effects and after-effects of each sales campaign be it digital or otherwise. A new identity, tagline, logo, mascot and the likes while being great for branding also consume precious resources besides time. To know if the same resonates positively with existing and prospective clients on time would be one of the best things for growth. All this can best be brought about by a well-formed and intentioned CRM/

Training resources within the organization to handle clients and their queries: Sales and marketing where done right is sure to attract the right kind of clients, who going forward float the word across resulting in more clients coming on board. All this is good for the enterprise, provided there is dedicated support in the sales and marketing team to handle clients and their queries. Queries and doubts are something which clients these days come up even before the product itself comes about! To handle the same to the best of their abilities, any organization ought to have the right information which is brought about by a systematic CRM.

Save time, money and people’s patience: Overall, where a CRM works as desired, everyone from marketer to clients to intermediaries get to work in unison which while saving time and money, brings the essential warmth in the relations!

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