MyCRM Daily CRM News 21-11-2014

Our CRM weekly update.  Is your data enabling you??  Are you getting actionable data from your CRM system?

In business, data is all over the place and can be an invaluable aspect of business decision-making.  However, the problem is that not all data is created equal.  In fact, some data is just plain useless for some businesses, while other bits of information are like gold.

The trick to getting actionable data – data that is actually useful to the company’s goals and productivity – is to use a good customer relationship management (CRM) system.  And ‘good’ is the key word.

Not all CRM systems are created equal.  In fact, some of the most expensive programmes don’t collect the right kind of data for some businesses.  Remember, collecting the wrong data is a costly investment (of both time and money) that can lead to failure.

In order to yield actionable data, the first question any business should ask is whether or not the data is relevant.  If the data isn’t relevant to fulfilling the needs of the customer, and ultimately the business, then it is not relevant.  A mistake that many businesses make is to collect all sorts of data – both just and actionable – and sort it out later.  This can take a lot of time and resources, which some companies just don’t have.  So, it’s a good idea to start off right.

Gathering the right kind of data will not only help maintain and build strong customer relationships, it will give the company a competitive edge.   


Changing business models and CRM

The question of transitioning from one business model to another without hurting productivity, revenue, or customer relationships can be tricky and is something that a lot of businesses face.

In many cases, it might make sense to change the existing business model, but the reality is that the current model, as obsolete as it might be, still generates profit and revenue.  This leads many managers to decide to just stick with it.

Shifting business models

When it comes to changing business models, there is nothing more difficult than figuring out exactly how to do it without hurting the bottom line.  Continuing on with normal business as usual isn’t always possible in such situations.

Remember, lots of business models do not already have a CRM system in place, so the transition might be to implement one in the first place.  This usually happens when managers realise that they simply cannot exist using spreadsheets only and need a more robust billing and payment solution, better databases, and stronger customer data acquisition.

The simplest answer to this problem is that businesses need to have a good customer relationship management (CRM) strategy in place to make the transition a little smoother.  If the shift involves moving from one CRM system to another or something more involved like switching to a subscription-based business model, the existing CRM strategy should be able to help the company maintain its current client base.


Is there any value to CRM-based customer data?

As most business managers already know, customer relationship management (CRM) systems provide plenty of customer data, which can be a very valuable commodity.  A CRM system actually uses the customer data to generate sales, but it can also add value to the company in a number of other ways.

In essence, data is a hot commodity all on its own. Companies that make the most of it can improve their bottom line.

CRM data is not always a representation of the past.  It can help business managers see the future of their sales and repeat business.  The CRM system that works best should be functional beyond simply making cold calls and selling.  When considering a new CRM system, business managers should ask which areas of the CRM system could be better tailored to suit the needs of customers as well as what the likelihood of repeated customers is.

Primary value

The principle value of CRM data is industry research. Most research analysis firms today consider the customer data derived from CRM to be corporate intelligence.  Many companies actually base their research on CRM data such as timeframe constraints, key performance indicators, and more.


As more and more businesses are starting to understand the importance of obtaining and using CRM system data, analysis has become more important than ever before.  Such intelligence can help businesses succeed or fail depending on how well they utilise the information.


4 ways to get real with your customers

One of the hottest buzzwords in the customer relationship management (CRM) industry these days is ‘real-time personalisation.’  Though the principle behind this theory is a no-brainer, many businesses simply don’t know how to do it.  Real-time personalisation is a method of reaching customers immediately, but it is harder than many managers realise. 

Here are four ways to get real with customers that other businesses have had success with: 

  1. Be trustworthy.  If a customer doesn’t trust a business or the source of contact, there is no point.  In order to be successful, organisations must build a trustworthy reputation with its client base.  Customer trust is a top factor in the success or failure of a company.  This means that organisations should have solid privacy policies designed to protect the customer and keep those policies readily available to the clients at all times.

  2. Don’t get too far ahead of the customer.  Though it is a good idea to know what the customer wants right before he or she knows, it is dangerous to get too far ahead of the client.  Businesses want to remain relevant, not become a nuisance. So apply common sense and logic to the real-time personalisation efforts to ensure that messages are received at appropriate times.

  3. Draw the right emotional response.  Part of any CRM strategy is to elicit emotional responses from customers – but they have to be the right kind!  Keep customers’ emotional responses in mind when reaching out for marketing purposes.  This goes with tip #2 above – use data accurately and be sure that all campaigns are facilitated by that data and properly timed.

  4. Stay open-minded.  Customers typically only want relevant contact, but they also want it to demonstrate that the organisation understands their needs.  This means that businesses should stay open-minded to alternatives – keep traditional bias off the table.  Remember, sometimes customers will shop outside of their traditionally expected niches. 

Just remember, it is a good idea – and very effective – to use all available data to create a solid picture of each customer.  A holistic view can help business managers create compelling, relevant, and effective content that will help maintain, and build, the customer relationship. 


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