Forrester’s Top 10 CRM Trends in 2014

Obtaining success within an industry relies heavily on staying on top of the latest trends.  That's why we're going to use today to look at some of the key trends that are emerging during 2014. From the original post by Kate Leggett on February 23, 2014 Trend 1: Companies Strive To Be Experience Driven. In 2014, we predict that an increasing number of organizations will adopt a more-disciplined approach to customer experience transformation. You can advance your organization's customer experience maturity by following a four-phased path: repair, elevate, optimize, and differentiate. To help enterprises excel at CX, leverage Forrester's framework that outlines 40 essential practices across six disciplines: customer understanding, measurement, governance, strategy, design, and culture. Trend 2: Enterprises Will Embrace Tools That Create An Outside-In Perspective. To make meaningful improvements, organizations must align their customer experience ecosystems. That requires understanding customers' deep needs, viewing interactions from the customer's perspective, and socializing customer insights - and organizations will embark on this journey in 2014. Trend 3: More Organizations Will Become Digital Disruptors. Digital disruption occurs any time a company uses digital tools or platforms to deliver better product experiences to customers in less time and for less money. In our digital disruption readiness survey, 89% of executives agreed that digital disruption is headed right for them, yet only 32% believe that their policies and practices will enable them to adapt - practices that must mature this year. Trend 4: The Mobile Mind Shift Will Force CRM To Evolve Quickly. Mobile CRM solution support will continue to rapidly evolve, and every CRM vendor has a mobile offering. But assembling the components of an effective mobile CRM solution to meet the precise use case for a specific type of mobile worker, or customer interaction, requires navigating a complex set of technology, process and people decisions. Trend 5: Big Data Will Turn Into Customer Insight. We expect more organizations to ramp up their efforts to turn big data into business insights. But most organizations don’t know where to start. Use Forrester's framework to help measure the maturity and guide the improvement plan of customer data management capabilities, as you capture, analyze, share data and evolve an organization to support your CRM strategy. Trend 6: Social Will Connect At All Stages Of The Customer Life Cycle. Social technologies have changed the way businesses interact with their customers. Yet, nearly 10 years into the social media boom, many executives are still reactive about adopting social media technologies, instead of focusing on the goals they want to accomplish. We predict that more companies will use a strategic approach, such as Forrester's approach, to leverage social technologies across all stages of the customer life cycle. Trend 7: Rapid Adoption Of CRM SaaS Solutions Will Continue. SaaS CRM deployments are here to stay, with over 70% of enterprises of all sizes having deployed all or some CRM, or planning to deploy CRM as a SaaS solution. And organizations don't choose SaaS only because its typically less expensive. In many cases, it gives organizations the much needed agility to quickly react to changing business pressures. Trend 8: More Companies Will Aspire To Become Agile Enterprises. All companies aspire to have a single, consolidated version of "the truth about customers," and they continue to rely on structured processes, transactional systems, and packaged apps to do this. Yet, over time, these systems have developed inflexible architectures and have become aligned with silos built around business functions that now present a serious barrier to many fast-moving companies. In 2014, we expect to see more companies to break down these technology, process, and organizational barriers to become more agile, and as a result, more competitive. Trend 9: Marketing Leaders Will Put Customer Insights To Use. Most companies treat marketing technology as a set of tools to buy and use rather than as a core competency to exploit. Marketers gather a great amount of data that can yield insights which can be leveraged across the organization. In 2014, we predict that this data will be used to enhance contextual marketing programs for greater personalization. Trend 10: Enterprise Will Support Employees To Embrace New Technologies. In our recent survey of over 600 organizations, more than two-fifths stated that their problems with CRM technologies were the result of "people issues," such as: slow user adoption, inadequate attention paid to change management and training, and difficulties in aligning the organizational culture with new ways of working. The result? Underutilized CRM investment and unmet business objectives. We predict that more organizations will apply the lessons learned from past failures to successfully deploy CRM technologies in 2014. If you are looking for some additional support with Microsoft Dynamics CRM or need help and advice on how to get stared then contact us today 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.

How CRM Software can help: avoid classic customer service mistakes

To follow on from our last “how CRM Can” http://blog.mycrmgroup.com/post/2014/03/03/How-CRM-Software-Can-Help-improve-customer-service.aspx here are some points on what things can go wrong and that need to be addressed even if a CRM is in place. The purpose to customer relationship management is keeping the customer happy, and CRM software is one of the most effective tools for this purpose.  Even when organisations implement the technology correctly there are a number of mistakes that can occur and here we look at some of the common mistakes and how to avoid them. A lack of empathy You need to remember that many companies today just don't seem concerned about the customer's needs.  In this age where customers can access the same services as yours elsewhere within seconds, it is important to ensure that the website is fully functional, customers' calls are returned quickly (CRM software can help with scheduling these calls) and that staff are all able to discuss products without having to pass customers around too much. But remember if you’re getting this wrong then maybe one of your competitor is getting it right and any amount of technology and software will not help if the ethos and organisational goal is to deliver excellence. You can use the reporting features in Microsoft CRM to make sure your teams are completing the actions as part of the process, but getting your team aligned with the goal of the organisation is critical to customer success. Making promises that are not kept Companies often make promises that they either cannot keep or simply don't have any intention of keeping.  Needless to say, this is a sure way to lose business.  Consistency is vital in terms of pricing, language used, speed of calls and a number of other factors.  CRM software can help deal with a number of these factors, and although pricing is key it is not always the deciding factor, make sure you understand your customers goals and needs and help they achieve what they want to achieve with your product, solution or service. Not treating people well It is important to ensure that customers are treated with the respect they deserve.  This is a classic error that many financial institutions make: offering all the perks to new customers whilst older, loyal ones leave and work with someone else.  If a customer is a loyal and regular one, which is something that CRM software will help show, it is important to help reward them for continuing to work with you.  Failure to do so verges on neglect. Source: Business 2 Community If you are looking for some additional support with Microsoft Dynamics CRM or need help and advice on how to get stared then contact us today 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.

Managing CRM to leverage maximum success

It being a weekend I was just scouring all the latest news articles and posts around CRM and this post on Business 2 Community came to my attention as it highlights some of the keys point that make CRM a success in business. Some organisation do make the mistake of believing that if they buy or subscribe to a CRM platform then they will have implemented great customer service. This idea is not exactly true, but they will be on the way to implementing great customer service as having the right software like Microsoft Dynamics CRM is a great starting point, along with a global provider like MyCRM. Below are a number of key points that can help make CRM a success in any small, medium or enterprise organisation.  Let’s look at these in more details and see why CRM software can be effectively managed in order to achieve the maximum results. Tidy up the home page As the area from which all tasks spring, it's important to ensure that the home page is clear and easy to navigate.  If multiple clients are open at once, the name should appear somewhere on the title so it is easy to move around. This enables an end user to quickly get access to the source of information about any one customer and a solution like Microsoft Dynamics is pre-configured to help define easy navigation. Only open what is necessary Keeping tabs open when they are not being regularly consulted is generally a bad idea.  Keep the unnecessary tabs closed so you know exactly what you are looking at. The new look and feel of a solution like Microsoft Dynamics CRM enables an end user to easily navigate the right information about a selected customer. Always update everything It is important to keep all prospects up to date.  Not only will this ensure that you don't get lost in what you're doing, but it will also make it possible to pull completely accurate reports at any time. Log all activities It is important to make sure that all activities are logged so that the sales funnel can be accurately viewed.  Whether it is a brief telephone exchange or an e-mail that was received, anyone looking at the folder should know exactly where the prospect is in the sales funnel. Always ask questions CRM software is usually quite flexible, so it is a good idea to ask if there are any settings that could be changed in order to make using the software easier.  One minor change in terms of page structure could make the software a lot easier to use. Source: Business 2 Community To find out more about MyCRM please visit http://www.mycrmgroup.com/ and if you are already using Microsoft Dynamics then see the latest support offering here http://www.mycrmsupported.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.    

How CRM Software Can Help: to increase CLV in your customer base

Firstly I need to define CLV as I have heard it called many things, but in principal this is where your organisation builds a loyal relationship between your customer and your brand. I will take a look at a couple of key points and explain why the customer and CRM experience is so important.  Research has proven that once a customer enjoys the experience of owning a product or working with a brand, a loyalty is formed and customer will return to make further purchases. Customer lifetime value (CLV) is the term that we all use to measure a customer's satisfaction with a product; if their CLV is good, the customer will be loyal to the brand.  Here's how a good CLV level be maintained. Learning and acting on customer tendencies One of the things that is evidently important is being able to have the ability to monitor and gauge how a customer will typically act regarding sales and this is a key part of the CRM process. This is where a solution like Microsoft Dynamics CRM provided as a fully managed service from MyCRM can help.  CLV can be increased by accurately gauging how customers will react and responding in a way that meets their needs.  For example, if a customer always buys a product in the lead up to Christmas, he or she should be presented with the most promotion around that time of year.  It is best to make a customer's experience as individualised as possible. Tailoring, offers around previous buying patterns, will help highlight the right offers to returning customers and by using Microsoft Dynamics you can easily do this by recording all orders previously made. A strong call to action and relevant information One key thing to understand and do well is the ability to remain relevant to customers in the modern age.  After all, they are constantly bombarded with messages from competitors.  Surveys indicate that customers simply want their overall shopping experience to be improved.  Customers should always know exactly where they need to go in order to complete the transaction.  It is wise to maintain regular communication until the customer takes action, either to end the communication or moves to re-purchase. Cross-selling Cross-selling and upselling are not as prevalent as they once were, but they remain key ways to increase CLV.  By upselling and cross-selling, the sales staff are able to remind customers just how many more options they have when purchasing from the company. These methods are still considered a great asset in sales approach for bringing awareness to new service lines and new products. Source: Business 2 Community Social Awareness More and more social media is becoming a centre point strategy within marketing and sales positioning. Customer will be looking for your brand on platform like Twitter and Facebook and by having a strong presence will increase CLV in the digital world we live. To find out more about MyCRM please visit http://www.mycrmgroup.com/ and if you are already using Microsoft Dynamics then see the latest support offering here http://www.mycrmsupported.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.

HOW CRM SOFTWARE CAN HELP: reduce errors that no one should make

In previous weeks, we have explored the idea of customer relationship management and how it can be used in a positive way.  Today, we're going to look at the other side of the coin: where people go wrong.  Let's take a look at some of the biggest errors that people make when dealing with CRM software. Not appealing to the mobile market Customers all over the world now use their mobile devices to browse the web.  This means that if your site is not optimised for mobile devices, you are likely to suffer from a serious loss in traffic.  As a result, you won't be able to access invaluable CRM mobile data.  It is not a smart move to ignore mobile and changes to the way we work in 2014. Making things too complicated Although we have discussed the sales funnel a few times, it is important to remember that although sales can sometimes be complicated, some customers simply show up with a desire to buy.  On these occasions, it is important not to get in their way.  Ensure that it is as easy as possible for customers to get what they want. Ignoring evolution If you operate a quality company and treat customers well, they will be loyal.  However, they won't be loyal forever.  It is vital to stay on top of how the marketplace changes.  Be sure to treat loyal customers as well as the new ones or they might disappear somewhere along the line. Shirking responsibility CRM software will usually enable a team to work out exactly where the ball was dropped.  It is important to ensure that the parties responsible for any problems are held accountable. Source: Business 2 Community The customer experience is key to your business and we all as business owners and as consumers are changing the way we shop and consume services, if you need help planning your CRM implementation in 2014 then contact MyCRM www.mycrmgroup.com for help advice and support 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.

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

CRM and Good Communications.

I recently picked up this interesting article on Information Age which relates broadly to the new age of CRM, but is it really a new age or are these just key points that every business in some way should be implementing. Below I’ll cover some of the points as they are key to successful CRM and Sales. One of the key points to overall sales success is ensuring that communications reach their fullest potential.  Here I’m going to take a look at how communications can be improved and how CRM software can become part of the overall process. Personalise things It's vital to ensure that the modern customer feels like he or she is being catered to exclusively.  Effectively targeting customers in a personalised way means that they are far more likely to invest due to the fact that they are being presented with products and services that suit them. The days of one advert going out to every single customer are long gone. Ensure CRM is in place CRM software and management systems in general are the standout tools in the modern sales world because they enable companies to manage and make use of a wide range of different data so they can ensure that the sales process is managed effectively.  This can have a huge effect on the quality of communications, as it ensures that the customer never feels bombarded with information and only ever receives genuinely useful information. Pay attention Everyone has seen the images taken from social media of automatic "bot" accounts delivering irrelevant replies to legitimate questions from customers.  It is vital to ensure that if a company does decide to invest in social communications, they really do take it seriously.  CRM can help by providing a set of relevant data on the customer to ensure that the replies sent are both relevant and consistent with their previous communications with the company. Source: The Information Age   If you need help with implementation or support for you Microsoft Dynamics CRM please visit www.mycrmsupported.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.

Cost Effective Monthly Support for Microsoft Dynamics CRM now available

www.MyCRMSupported.com   I was recently at a business customer open day and got the chance to talk to a number of business owners about the challenges they faced with CRM solutions, a number of the people there asked questions around support and ad-hoc configuration. The end result of the day was that we have now launched MyCRM Supported.  MyCRM Supported is a packaged support service to meet a range of business needs and requirements as every business is different and has different requirements. With this in mind we have launched 4 different monthly subscription services.  Advisory The first of our support packs has been designed as an advisory service, when there are those time when you need to ask someone how a function works or how you can do a particular action in CRM. For on-premise customers, we also carry out an audit report on how the system is set up and check for latest rollups.   Guidance If you're looking for a little more and need some help setting up basic configuration and importing of initial datasets, then this package may fit your budget. We still include our advisory role, and can also help with online configuration and general guidance to help get the best from your CRM investment.   Supervisory Our Supervisory package extends that of Guidance, and we will put in place a strategy to maintain your CRM Server and Database. This will include planning all update rollups, performing and reviewing database maintenance along with guidance and best practice on using your CRM system. The Supervisory package is the perfect package for smaller organisations with between 25 and 40 users of CRM on-premise.   Administrative Our full support as your administrator of CRM will help place your CRM in safe hands. We will perform and advise on CRM database maintenance and current configurations, and set up and remotely maintain the system to keep optimum performance in place. We will schedule and manage updates and advise on database backups. In addition, we provide the option to have a backup of your CRM database stored in our state-of-the-art secure data centre managed by Rackspace UK.   These package can be further tailored to unique requirements.   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.