Choosing the right CRM system, software and provider.

As part of my quest to find relevant news articles and blog posts on CRM I found this new article in Business News Daily.  The article poses some interesting points for those looking to invest in a new CRM system, particularly those that are thinking about investing in new software.  The points below can be raised when considering many things for your business but consideration has to be given to cost, ROI (Return on Investment) and longevity of a solution. Also give thought to who is providing what, as although a hosting provider may offer software they might not offer consulting that is specific to your business sector or the manufacture of the software may provide it as a serv... [More]

Unique ways that CRM can aid a company

A new piece in the Box Free IT website has taken an in-depth look at the CRM industry. It has highlighted some of the key benefits that CRM can have with the emphasis firmly on providing genuine results. The first point that is highlighted in the piece is that CRM data and software can help to introduce a genuine system to smaller businesses.  SMEs often lack an in-place system designed to help record and follow up on potential prospects, which means that some genuine leads often fall through the cracks, leading to a revenue loss. Secondly, it highlights the value of putting into writing all of the steps of its sales process.  CRM software can enable a company to both initially d... [More]

Microsoft releases industry templates for CRM 2013

Microsoft is making an attempt to differentiate its Dynamics CRM software from other competitors in the sector by including a new set of 18 specific industry templates as part of the software.  These templates are designed to be used by companies in those industries, and include sports management, healthcare and even more specialist areas such as prison inmate data. The customised templates were announced during Microsoft's Convergence 2013 EMEA event, held in Barcelona. As well as the templates, Microsoft also publicised a new pricing offer which will bundle the Dynamics software with Office 365.  The offer will be available up until March 2014 according to the company’s... [More]

Questions to ask before investing in your next CRM system

A CRM system can have a number of positive impacts on almost any company.  However, it is important that before a system is invested in, certain key questions are asked of it: Is it easy to use onboard? It is important to make sure that one, intuitive cross-referencing tool is used in order to allow that offline customer data is used in order to increase the online audience.  This should be do-able in an immediate, genuinely actionable way. How compatible is the system? It is important for a CRM system to be able to link up effectively with other data and tools.  Therefore, whatever particular apps a company considers essential, whether it is advertising click data or shop... [More]

How can CRM software aid different business processes?

After doing some research and reviewing a number of articles including this new piece on CIO.com, I just thought I‘d take the opportunity to cover off some of the key processes and areas that a good implementation of CRM can be used for. The article on CIO talks about 3 key areas and explores the CRM sector in a different way.  Essentially, it looks at three ways in which an effective CRM system can help to improve a company's business processes.  But from experience and understanding what CRM systems can be used for I’ve taken the opportunity to add what is missing. A CRM system implemented correctly is and can be so much more. The first three points below are correc... [More]

Effective CRM and Mobile Apps can help end poor customer service

An interesting new article in Business 2 Community has highlighted that in the mobile age, effective customer service remains the key to achieving positive CRM results. With 90% of UK shoppers saying that they would walk away from a sale if they encountered poor customer service, it is important that no avenue of a brand is left behind.  The article voices the fact that mobile CRM is the ideal way to achieve this. A mobile CRM should be used to determine information under two umbrellas. This would be the information the customer actually wants to access on their mobile and also how they want to engage with it. The article then highlights the value of both simplicity and ease of acces... [More]

What makes data-sets valuable to CRM?

A new article by the smart data collective has sought to analyse what makes certain nuggets of information valuable.  The results are quite interesting, as they argue that size has nothing to do with value.  Here are some of the key takeaways from the piece: Evaluate content Business interactions vary substantially.  On some occasions someone may be a customer and at other times they might simply offer consultation.  That means that context is important in terms of CRM. For instance, to many firms, an insurance agent represents an outgoing but to a few specialist companies, they are a customer.  It is important to remember that there is not one single definition of... [More]

Can CRM benefit higher education and what are the parallels with business?

A new piece in the Financial Post has highlighted the potential that CRM could bring to the higher education sector.  Interestingly, research has already indicated that institutions could gain a 42% increase in revenue by making use of an effective customer relationship management process piece Four key requirements for a CRM system were explored: Complete tracking of students A successful CRM system in the higher education sector would need to build a detailed profile of each student's interests, including their preferences and their purchase intent, not to mention their academic financial and communication history.  Essentially, this has the same aim as a business profile whic... [More]

Implementing CRM - Key Questions for your CRM Provider

A new piece in Business 2 Community has explored some of the key questions that a company should ask any CRM service provider that they're considering working with.  We're completely in favour of firms working with only the best companies, so we're going to explore each point:   Do they have a mobile friendly approach?   In the modern business world, the ability to be mobile is essential.  How many executives are genuinely sat at their desk for eight hours a day?  Virtually none, and yet some CRM services aren't accounting for the ability to explore data on the move.  Any CRM system you invest in should be useable on the road.   With the recent releas... [More]