After 20 years of working in the IT industry and implementing business systems, I still have people ask me what CRM is? It’s only in the last 4 - 5 years that I’ve manage to cement my knowledge and confirm to people that it is nothing to do with technology or software.
My thinking although enhanced by experience and helping customers achieve more, has been widely influenced by looking at the bigger picture and understanding with research and reading why and how some organisations scale and become successful and others don’t. Understanding what is to be achieved and that technology is just an enabler has helped grow our team and expand our methodology of delivery.
Even Microsoft seem to have dropped the CRM acronym, while Salesforce persist, and personally I think it’s a great acronym. One which can be used as a great starting point to help define how technology can be used to implement a strategy of automation and process within your business. I would have to say this though as my company is MyCRM, right?
Well probably not, as wherever I have worked and more so in the last 10 years, my approach has been about helping business owners achieve success with technology, not one of just selling some software that might not meet an objective.
So many times I’ve worked with organisations where their story is so familiar, and usually starts with “We bought this system from X partner, and it does not work”. Implementation of some technology or software without a strategic plan for measuring its success will give you an outcome of having some software implemented that is either good or bad.
The first and most important question to ask yourself is what does success look like? Followed by how are you going to measure the success of this technology within your organisation? It is a known fact worldwide that there are millions of small businesses, some wanting to be the next big thing, while there are very few businesses that scale to be a household name. The percentages are somewhat eye opening.
The next question is what are you going to use? CRM systems have evolved over the past 20 years and so has the technology, including the way we all work and do business. But the principle of business has pretty much stayed the same and as a business owner your key objectives are probably efficiency and growth - I know this has been one of my goals at MyCRM as we have grown.
We all know that retaining customers is critical and even MyCRM have lost some along the way. Thinking your business is 100% perfect will probably end with your business being in decline. All business need to evolve, change and grow, including yours.
You can look to the highstreets to see age-old brand names disappear as they failed to evolve and embrace the new. Recently we have seen HMV go into administration again, but the story would have been very different if HMV had changed its business strategy, bucked the trend and been disruptive by becoming or offering subscription as a streaming service.
Technology will change what we do, but we are all somebody’s customer and this will not change. So for your business it is a matter of defining strategy, not really one of buying the latest technology.
Will a CRM system help you do this? Well obviously I’d like to say yes, but knowing and being able to articulate what it is you want to achieve is the first step. I still hear prospects use the phrase “We want to implement best practice”, but in the last few years I’ve become very wary of this phrase as it does not actually mean anything. What I’ve come to realise is that when this phrase is used it tends to mean “We don’t actually know what we want or how things work, but we want you to make the problem go away”, don’t whatever you do fall into this trap.
So back to the name MyCRM, well I’d hope it’s easy to understand, but maybe not, it’s really all about putting the “C” or “Customer” at the centre of what we do. We are happy to give direction and work in collaboration to help you achieve your goals. We are happy to share examples of success and advice, and help you plan what success for your business looks like. The key objectives of what you want to achieve though, have to come from you.
As a service provider, we try and make the process of meeting expectation as easy as possible, and we have for the last few years been reworking our approach, our methodology and more importantly the information we share. That recently means a brand new website with no technical jargon, no fluff and no outlandish claims, just clear and concise information you can use. Let us know what you think https://www.mycrmgroup.com
As we move into 2019 with the potential of economic upset still on the horizon and still not resolved, now is a great time for efficiency saving and process definition in your business. There is no need to invest tens of thousands of pounds implementing high tech, but there is a need to streamline and protect what you do, and look at ways of doing more with less.
If this post has sparked an ideas, or our approach to helping your business do more resonates and you want to discuss further, then please get in touch.