Warming up leads using CRM and social media

This is a great follow on article from my original post about socialising your business, and as social media is becoming more of the norm in business I’ve taken this opportunity to highlight some further points of why social media is a get asset to business. I’ve always promoted positively and discussed the importance of social media to the CRM process.  It is inarguably one of the most crucial ways to engage customers.  Here I’m looking at how it can be used to help generate warm leads for the sales team and how CRM software can help with the process. It helps a company get to know a prospect When used effectively, CRM software really can help a company to understand a potential customer through the extraction of relevant social media data.  The company can monitor their online footprint.  They can also follow and share the customer's content if they have any and share their own.  This remains one of the most effective ways to build organic intimacy with potential clients. Look at the buying cycle Again, CRM software can be invaluable in terms of its ability to extract relevant data and analyse where in the buying cycle the customer currently is.  If they've recently had a trigger event (such as relocating, hiring new staff, participating in a merger, etc.) then they are far more likely to be open to potential sales.  Using social media, it is entirely possible to uncover this information and make use of it. Deeper engagement Where possible, social media should always be about asking questions and shortening the selling cycle.  A company should be ready to share helpful, relevant content and offer genuine solutions to the problem.  CRM software can help a company see when these sorts of questions are being asked. Just a tool in the box or a strand to your bow I’d also like to note that although MyCRM and I are an advocate of using Social media like Twitter and Facebook along with Linked in it should not be seen as the only solution and should be only part of the inbound and outbound marketing approach taken. For more on this subject you can contact MyCRM here www.MyCRMGroup.com or review the source article Business 2 Community About MyCRM MyCRM has over 20 years’ experience in helping small to medium sized businesses understand and implement CRM as a technology and CRM as a process.  We can help drive adoption and ROI in businesses and organisations that are implementing a marketing solution through a CRM like Microsoft Dynamics.  You can read our customer testimonials here http://www.mycrmgroup.com/customers.aspx.  MyCRM don’t only provide a managed service but also off a range of product solutions which are off-the-shelf extensions to enhance CRM productivity, along with dedicated support packages to meet business requirements. We offer from our own fully managed datacentre a licence per user Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform, you can see more about using MyCRM as a managed service here: http://hosted.mycrmgroup.com/   As an Independent Software Vendor (ISV) we offer a range of pre-built application extensions for your Microsoft CRM Solution. You can get access to a range of products for Microsoft Dynamics CRM from

Using CRM in different Sectors and Verticals

I came across this article on CRM buyer and it reignited thoughts of past implementations when CRM was still a new concept and every opportunity was an opportunity to sell to a new vertical.  What I mean by this was that the company I worked for would win a project say in energy and then they would present themselves as specialist CRM providers in the energy business sector. Things have moved on a lot since the early software days and the CRM market has matured a lot with major payers like Microsoft delivering great platforms like Microsoft Dynamics CRM along with a number of industry templates and solutions. But the truth of the matter is CRM software can still hugely benefit companies in a number of different ways, but these benefits largely come from the ability to benefit the customers themselves.  I’m going to take a look at three different types of customers and how CRM software can be used to help improve their experience. B2C In any B2C environment, the key is to provide customers with products that will genuinely enhance their lives.  The goal here is to build ongoing interactions with the company in a bid to fully understand their needs and also how their needs will develop.  For example, someone learning to play the guitar will likely need more gear as he develops his skills, and if he has a positive ongoing relationship with a store selling said gear, he is more likely to go back there when he needs something new. B2B Customer need evolution becomes even more important in a B2B relationship, but the plus side is that relationships are often a bit easier to maintain.  The driving points for the buyer are usually stated upfront, such as price, timely delivery, and payment terms.  As long as the seller satisfies those points, the relationship will usually be maintainable.  Over time, the needs of the customer will often evolve, and CRM data can help track these needs.  Partners / Suppliers It is important to cultivate relationships with direct vendors and suppliers, as these will also develop over time.  Once the vendors' needs are met, it is also vital to ensure that value is increased in terms of training and that they feel like legitimate partners; again, this can be combined with CRM data to help build a better profile of the suppliers or vendors. Source: CRM Buyer In future articles I will be looking at the different vertical templates that are available for Microsoft CRM. If you looking for help implement your Microsoft Dynamics CRM system then please take a look at how MyCRM can help About MyCRM MyCRM has over 20 years’ experience in helping small to medium sized businesses understand and implement CRM as a technology and CRM as a process.  We can help drive adoption and ROI in businesses and organisations that are implementing a marketing solution through a CRM like Microsoft Dynamics.  You can read our customer testimonials here http://www.mycrmgroup.com/customers.aspx.  MyCRM don’t only provide a managed service but also off a range of product solutions which are off-the-shelf extensions to enhance CRM productivity, along with dedicated support packages to meet business requirements. We offer from our own fully managed datacentre a licence per user Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform, you can see more about using MyCRM as a managed service here: http://hosted.mycrmgroup.com/ As an Independent Software Vendor (ISV) we offer a range of pre-built application extensions for your Microsoft CRM Solution. You can get access to a range of products for Microsoft Dynamics CRM from the MyCRM download centre here: http://downloads.mycrmgroup.com after registering for an account.  

How CRM software can help manage a company’s sales pipeline, when you know what it is! CRM that is!

From years of experience in the CRM market place I have come to realise, and some may disagree that CRM means many different things to many different people even when they are from the same organisation. I recently spent time with an organisation where the Sales Director sat across the table and clearly stated that “CRM is rubbish and it is all make believe and as an organisation we don't needed any of it!”.  My obvious response was just to smile and then, I asked why he thought that was the case.    I was truly surprised by the response which was “What we need as an organisation is something to manage Sales and Opportunity to know if our targets are going to be hit, what we need is SRM Sales Relationship Management” After a very short demo of the sales process in Microsoft Dynamics CRM and an explanation that sales are made to customers I had a new “Raving Fan” on my hands, a "convert to CRM".  This was not because the demo I had given was the best ever demo but clarification of how CRM can help in that department in that instance i.e. managing sales opportunities had opened the door to other discussions on how CRM could be used within the organisation. In this post I look at how a tool like Microsoft Dynamics CRM can be used to manage a Sales Pipeline out of the box.  To any Sales Manager or Director the management of closed and open sales opportunity is key to meeting targets and here I look at how CRM does this effortlessly. Understanding Prospects So the question you are probably asking is what is a prospect and where are they coming some?  IN Microsoft CRM a Prospect is a Lead record and looks like this:-     A lead record can be captured from many different sources including Social, Web, Phone or Email but the details are always the same, with the idea being that the individual is interested or may be interested in the products and services offered by your organisation. Once a new lead or prospect has been added to your CRM then you should have a standard business process on how you want to contact that person. This may include email marketing, an introduction email, a phone call or some other interaction but this should be recorded at the lead or prospect level. Understanding Prospect to Customer Status. The next stage is to understand the best time for your business to convert the new lead to a customer, and it most cases this is when a number of process have been completed in CRM to qualify the Lead Prospect with the right information. One of the great new features in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 (see Screen shot above) is the help to qualify process which has 4 key steps from Qualify to Close.  This new easy to use process helps deliver lead / prospect creation, qualification, development, proposal and completion to an active pending customer. The activity feed in the centre of the screen shows the real time status of activity for the customer record which has been converted from the original prospect or Lead record.        Helping to manage follow-ups Once the initial leads have been generated, it's important for the sales staff to be able to manage the follow-up communications effectively. Fortunately, the CRM software means that information such as the action required, contact details and planned dates for the follow up can all be kept in one place, allowing for efficient communication between different sales staff. Records can easily be assigned to individual sales team members with an over view and dashboards provided to Managers and Directors Measuring results Needless to say, one of the key parts of managing the sales funnel is to ensure that all of the most relevant information regarding results is added to the database.  Keeping this data enables a company to predict future sales results, meaning that relatively accurate sales forecasts can take place, enabling the business to optimise its planning and cash flow for the future.  Microsoft CRM come complete with in-built sales forecasting reports and dashboards.     Analyzing the results The final key in terms of managing the sales pipeline is to ensure that the data used is analysed fully.  If there is a particular path that has led to sales success in the past, then it can be followed again.  Improvements to strategies should be made, and positive techniques put into action.  This enables the company to demonstrate to the sales staff exactly why some processes are being used and others not. To find out more and to see why MyCRM specialise in delivering Microsoft CRM as a service contact us at www.mycrmgroup.com. Article Source: Firmology About MyCRM MyCRM has over 20 years’ experience in helping small to medium sized businesses understand and implement CRM as a technology and CRM as a process.  We can help drive adoption and ROI in businesses and organisations that are implementing a marketing solution through a CRM like Microsoft Dynamics.  You can read our customer testimonials here http://www.mycrmgroup.com/customers.aspx.  MyCRM don’t only provide a managed service but also off a range of product solutions which are off-the-shelf extensions to enhance CRM productivity, along with dedicated support packages to meet business requirements. We offer from our own fully managed datacentre a licence per user Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform, you can see more about using MyCRM as a managed service here: http://hosted.mycrmgroup.com/ As an Independent Software Vendor (ISV) we offer a range of pre-built application extensions for your Microsoft CRM Solution. You can get access to a range of products for Microsoft Dynamics CRM from the MyCRM download centre here: http://downloads.mycrmgroup.com after registering for an account.    

Using CRM to retain and empower your Sales Team

Today’s article originally from Business 2 Community highlights some of the point on why having a well implemented CRM in your business can help retain your Sales team and make them more productive. Over many years I have worked for several CRM based organisations and have realised Sales team members are happiest when they are selling successfully and CRM can be part of the tool set that helps individual’s achieve pre-set management goals. One of the key ways to make sure that CRM software is doing its job is to look at the impact it has on the sales team.  Indeed, the source of this article has taken a look at some of the ways in which the software can be used to help build and retain stronger sales teams. It can help with training If new staff members are trained to use the software as soon as they start in the role, then they're more likely to engage with it and are more likely to use it to make sales. If they're trained to do this immediately they're more likely to model their working day on the stats rather than other colleagues. Use the metrics One of the pluses of CRM software is that it provides verifiable metrics that can be used to judge the success of a sales team.  It's therefore important to actually use it, and to hold the sales team responsible for meeting the necessary targets (as judged through the data).  This can help you work out where the weaker links in the team are. Employees can track their own progress One of the plus sides of the data is that employees can track their own performance, and work out in advance what their commissions should be.  As such, CRM software can provide genuine motivation for success in of itself, purely by the team seeing how much additional money they've made as well as how much more they could potentially make. Adding Extra Value for Sales Team Members Here at MyCRM we understand how to make CRM effective to help get the job of sales and marking streamlined.  With years of CRM experience we have developed tools like ePDF http://downloads.mycrmgroup.com/ePDF.aspx for creating quick orders and Quotes we have created extensions like eMap http://downloads.mycrmgroup.com/eMap.aspx for Sales team in the field to create effective routes and minimise time on the road, or eCampaign http://downloads.mycrmgroup.com/eCampaign.aspx to help marketers drive new business. To find out more visit www.mycrmgroup.com About MyCRM MyCRM has over 20 years’ experience in helping small to medium sized businesses understand and implement CRM as a technology and CRM as a process.  We can help drive adoption and ROI in businesses and organisations that are implementing a marketing solution through a CRM like Microsoft Dynamics.  You can read our customer testimonials here http://www.mycrmgroup.com/customers.aspx.  MyCRM don’t only provide a managed service but also off a range of product solutions which are off-the-shelf extensions to enhance CRM productivity, along with dedicated support packages to meet business requirements. We offer from our own fully managed datacentre a licence per user Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform, you can see more about using MyCRM as a managed service here: http://hosted.mycrmgroup.com/ As an Independent Software Vendor (ISV) we offer a range of pre-built application extensions for your Microsoft CRM Solution. You can get access to a range of products for Microsoft Dynamics CRM from the MyCRM download centre here: http://downloads.mycrmgroup.com after registering for an account. Source: Business 2 Community

Exploring social CRM in more depth, part 1

Social media has - and will continue to have - a big role in the world of CRM. A piece in hospitality technology previously shed light on the social side of customer relationship management, and over the next couple of days we're going to take a look at some of the key ways that it's benefits can be maximised. I recently blogged on the point of taking your business social see http://blog.mycrmgroup.com/post/2013/10/21/Does-socializing-your-business-mean-good-CRM.aspx  Here these is a review on some good points for all business Developing a strategy It is important for everyone involved in a team's marketing strategy to know exactly what the overall aim is in terms of the brand's perspective.  What is the overall goal for a company's social media promotion? Is it to raise awareness? To drive sales? Or simply to help speed up the sales process? Firm goals mean success. Pick the right technology It's important to ensure that when first choosing the relevant software, the right one is picked. The ideal method is to choose software that already fits the needs of the company, rather than having to manipulate the firm's processes so that they fit the way that the software works.  If the company's sales process already works, there's no reason to change it. Have a single person monitor the process Whilst in many cases a number of people will help to manage the social media process, this isn't necessarily ideal. Preferably, one staff member should be placed in order to specifically manage social CRM. This way there is someone firmly in place whom relevant CRM and social information can go to. Follow up and respond quickly Social CRM is important as if you’re not responding with two way communication then you’re not being social, you can easily message out but you need to be aware of what people are saying about your business and respond to prospects and customers if you’re using social channels. Source:  Hospitality Technology To help drive your business CRM strategy in 2014 contact MyCRM today http://www.mycrmgroup.com About MyCRM MyCRM has over 20 years’ experience in helping small to medium sized businesses understand and implement CRM as a technology and CRM as a process.  We can help drive adoption and ROI in businesses and organisations that are implementing a marketing solution through a CRM like Microsoft Dynamics.  You can read our customer testimonials here http://www.mycrmgroup.com/customers.aspx.  MyCRM don’t only provide a managed service but also off a range of product solutions which are off-the-shelf extensions to enhance CRM productivity, along with dedicated support packages to meet business requirements. We offer from our own fully managed datacentre a licence per user Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform, you can see more about using MyCRM as a managed service here: http://hosted.mycrmgroup.com/ As an Independent Software Vendor (ISV) we offer a range of pre-built application extensions for your Microsoft CRM Solution. You can get access to a range of products for Microsoft Dynamics CRM from the MyCRM download centre here: http://downloads.mycrmgroup.com after registering for an account. 

CRM and Marketing for better Sales

After reading an interesting article of Business 2 Community I have to concur that a CRM system remains an effective investment for many people. However, there are several keys to making it work, especially within marketing. This is interesting, as it's often seen as being part of the more specific sales-side of things. Interestingly, though, statistics showed that 46% of marketers using more mature lead management processes will then in turn have sales teams that follow up on more than 75% of the leads they've generated. Sales teams linked to 25% of these marketers will be able to contact prospects within around a day - the figure otherwise is around 10%. There is obviously, then, a lot of potential for marketers to use CRM software effectively. One of the key ways in which CRM can aid marketers is profiling and segmentation. The marketing team needs to be able to ask the right questions in terms of what the different customer demographics want, and the CRM software can help to provide this extra level of insight. Integration with e-mail marketing is another useful benefit of CRM systems. According to Jupiter research, relevant, on-the-ball e-mails help to drive around 18 times more revenue than general broadcast e-mails. And working with a provider like MyCRM can benefit organisations further as they not only offer best of breed CRM using Microsoft Dynamics CRM but can off extended function all in one place and include things like email marketing directly from the hosted managed CRM system. This offer some great advantages as marketing users can automate the CRM system to create lead follow ups for sales based on a scored criteria or location of prospect.  You can see more here http://downloads.mycrmgroup.com/eCampaign.aspx Finally, general ROI management can be aided substantially by the CRM process.  By using metrics such as customers acquired, attrition rates, cross-sell rates, up-sell rates and the average number of transactions, marketers can more accurately adjust their processes in order to help achieve higher levels of sales, and to better increase communication with customers. Source: Business 2 Community About MyCRM MyCRM has over 20 years’ experience in helping small to medium sized businesses understand and implement CRM as a technology and CRM as a process.  We can help drive adoption and ROI in businesses and organisations that are implementing a marketing solution through a CRM like Microsoft Dynamics.  You can read our customer testimonials here http://www.mycrmgroup.com/customers.aspx.  MyCRM don’t only provide a managed service but also off a range of product solutions which are off-the-shelf extensions to enhance CRM productivity, along with dedicated support packages to meet business requirements. We offer from our own fully managed datacentre a licence per user Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform, you can see more about using MyCRM as a managed service here: http://hosted.mycrmgroup.com/ As an Independent Software Vendor (ISV) we offer a range of pre-built application extensions for your Microsoft CRM Solution. You can get access to a range of products for Microsoft Dynamics CRM from the MyCRM download centre here: http://downloads.mycrmgroup.com after registering for an account.

Measuring CRM effectiveness and ROI

One of the biggest investments your business can make is software and hardware, so it is critical that the decisions made are not on a whim but made with the correct information to hand. As an investment, there's no doubting the fact that CRM software can represent excellent value for money. However, being able to measure exactly how effective it's being is a key part of working out exactly how valuable it's being. That's why a new piece on Investment News is worth looking at: it details some of the key attributes to look at in order to work out CRM software's ROI. Engagement How pro-active is the software in terms of actually creating engagement with customers. Yes, it sends out e-mails, but does it receive them back? How many people have engaged with the brand that otherwise wouldn't have if the CRM software was not in place. Key things to consider is the configuration of the system and how metrics can be gathered and used for business purposes.  As an example CRM with email marketing from MyCRM has an average cost of £50 per user per month and enables an organisation to send unlimited emails and track responses.  If those responses are not then used for sales and further engagement where is the ROI?  Well it might be an ROI in driving more traffic to your web sites, but predominantly real ROI in anything is dictated by the number of returning sales and profit generated. Percentage of clients The chances are that before the CRM software was installed, your firm already had a number of clients in place. The key, then, is to work out how many of the clients you now have were brought in through the software. Are there clients there that probably wouldn't have bought a product or service had it not been for the software? But as you wil know the software is just the enabler so the strategy for your CRM is how you can drive more business and record and react on the information you have.  Many organisation will start small and define a single process.  Some define the whole business, either way at MyCRM we can help you work towards a goal of successful customer management and sales generation. Client turnover This is another key factor. Removing client turnover full stop is virtually impossible for any business. However, it should be possible to measure whether or not this figure has gone up or down since the software was installed. Remember, CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management: the software is there to help you improve the ways that you engage with your clients. It's important for statistics to bear out the fact that it's doing that. Source: Investment News If you are looking for some help with the implementation of development of your Microsoft Dynamics CRM then you can contact me here http://www.mycrmgroup.com About MyCRM MyCRM has over 20 years’ experience in understanding how CRM as a technology and CRM as a process can work in business and has therefore developed a number of off-the-shelf extensions to enhance CRM productivity. We offer from our own fully managed datacentre, with a licence per user Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform, you can see more about using MyCRM as a managed service here: http://hosted.mycrmgroup.com/   As an Independent Software Vendor (ISV) we offer a range of pre-built application extensions for your Microsoft CRM Solution. You can get access to a range of products for Microsoft Dynamics CRM from the MyCRM download centre here: http://downloads.mycrmgroup.com after registering for an account.

Managing the CRM process in your business

I recently came across an interesting new article in Forbes has explored some important points regarding the buyers journey, a number of which can be linked to the CRM software process. Use the software tactfully CRM software can be genuinely invaluable. However, it's important to ensure that it is presented to the sales staff in a way that isn't too threatening. Rather than presenting it as some sort of all seeing eye, it should be presented as exactly what it is: software that can make the lives of sales staff far easier. Buyers can channel-surf It is important to remember that in the digital age, buyers use the web at every single stage of the process. Previously, it was normal to estimate where they were in the sales process simply by viewing their engagement with different channels. Now, though, individual channel preferences for different buyer personas are vital in gauging the sales process. Good sales staff will already know what they're doing It is also important to remember that by their nature, good sales staff are already very intuitive, so the chances are that they'll know how invaluable the CRM software could be to them. Work with the outstanding members of the team to try and help implement the new process and share the exciting potential of the software. Plan, plan, plan As with all new integrations, it is important to plan everything out and to never be afraid of altering the sales and marketing process if new CRM data suggests that a change might be necessary. Source: Forbes If you are looking for some help with the implementation of development of your Microsoft Dynamics CRM then you can contact me here http://www.mycrmgroup.com About MyCRM MyCRM has over 20 years’ experience in understanding how CRM as a technology and CRM as a process can work in business and has therefore developed a number of off-the-shelf extensions to enhance CRM productivity. We offer from our own fully managed datacentre, with a licence per user Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform, you can see more about using MyCRM as a managed service here: http://hosted.mycrmgroup.com/ As an Independent Software Vendor (ISV) we offer a range of pre-built application extensions for your Microsoft CRM Solution. You can get access to a range of products for Microsoft Dynamics CRM from the MyCRM download centre here: http://downloads.mycrmgroup.com after registering for an account. 

How can CRM software help manage the sales funnel?

There are a number of different benefits to CRM software, and one of these being how it helps to manage the sales funnel. A new article in the Smart Data Collective has highlighted some of the ways that it does so, and we're going to take a closer look here: It records all of the interactions CRM software enables the company to build a definitive repository for customer contact data, meaning that it can in effect replace three things: the company's individual contact list and address book, the main marketing database and the resolving issues database. All three can be monitored from one place. It provides a pipeline to follow If it's been configured properly, then the CRM software used should be able to be configured in such a way that it exactly matches the company's sales pipeline. It's therefore possible to see exactly where any single account is in terms of the sales funnel - it's even possible to edit the software so that it works in 'stages'. This means that the sales team can see when a particular lead is in the riskiest stage of the sales process, allowing them to provide the extra attention. It can automate Some of the most mundane and time consuming parts of the sales process can be automated using the CRM software, saving money and time. Things like delivering e-mails according to schedule, collecting responses and then monitoring click-through, message opens and other statistics, can all be conducted by the CRM software's processes. Intuitive Reporting Sales team member loving seeing how they have done and how they are doing against target, and motivation can be attained by showing real time comparisons on how other team members perform so make sure CRM is equipped with real-time reports and dashboards. Source: Smart Data Collective If you are looking for some help with the implementation of development of your Microsoft Dynamics CRM then you can contact me here http://www.mycrmgroup.com About MyCRM MyCRM has over 20 years’ experience in understanding how CRM as a technology and CRM as a process can work in business and has therefore developed a number of off-the-shelf extensions to enhance CRM productivity. We offer from our own fully managed datacentre, with a licence per user Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform, you can see more about using MyCRM as a managed service here: http://hosted.mycrmgroup.com/   As an Independent Software Vendor (ISV) we offer a range of pre-built application extensions for your Microsoft CRM Solution. You can get access to a range of products for Microsoft Dynamics CRM from the MyCRM download centre here: http://downloads.mycrmgroup.com after registering for an account.