CRM is designed to help businesses keep track of customers and their interactions with the business.
It uses data about customer’s past purchases, their interests, the time they spend on your website and more to deliver personalized messages that will be most likely to resonate with them. CRM also helps you create a personal connection with your customers by keeping them informed about new products or offers you have available for purchase.
Data-driven marketing takes this one step further by using analytics from social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Google Analytics in order to see what people are saying about your company online so you can engage in those conversations as well
As businesses grow, they soon discover the vital importance of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software. Which one helps you streamline your sales processes, customer interactions, and business operations?. Behind the scenes of every successful business is a well-crafted CRM that centralizes all prospect, customer, and employee data.
CRM software stores interactions between customers, vendors, team members, and other business contacts.
A CRM is an application or a service your team uses to interact with customers and manage accounts. Not all CRM features are available in every CRM. However, there are three types of CRM software that you should know so you can strategically use your CRM to the fullest.
3 Types Of CRM
While all those benefits apply on some level to just about any CRM, customer relationship management includes a large category of tools. Different CRM products vary in terms of features and focus, and they can be divided into three main categories.
- Operational CRM systems
- Analytical CRM systems
- Collaborative CRM systems
It is a type of CRM software, which is used in operations like the handling of sales inquiries, problem inquiries. It is a software/product where various tickets are created, and people generally use it for providing support or sales activities.
These types of CRM are generally used in front offices, where people directly interact with potential customers or existing customers.? Operational types of CRM are further subdivided into three types as follows;
Marketing CRM are the products that have their main focus on marketing. Where sales are yet to occur, there are still potential clients in the market whom you want to reach and propose your services. Therefore, you would want to persuade them in a way where they would come to you for availing of your services.
For example, You have a website that showcases your organizational skills and capacities. You can then post a whitepaper on your website or put up, say, a newsletter. Customers looking for similar products and services may visit your site and signup for a whitepaper or newsletter.
On signing up, the CRM will capture the email id of the potential lead, and you can then periodically send him promotional articles or newsletters or offers. The idea here is to remain in front of your customer by sending periodic material to him.
This way, when the product is to be bought, or service is to be purchased, the customer will immediately be reminded of you.
Actual sales activities start where the role of Marketing ends. Presuming that the customer is interested in your services, he then contacts you and sends you an inquiry; the objective now is successfully turning every inquiry that comes your way into your customer.
But in reality, it rarely happens. Every inquiry that comes your way might not be convertible as people might not find your services suitable for them.
The process here is also known as Opportunity Management or Sales Pipeline management. Every time a new inquiry comes, it automatically gets created as a Ticket or a Case. It then needs to be followed up diligently by your Sales team, which constantly remain in touch with the customer and try to convert into a successful Sales.
This is a type of Operational CRM that theoretically comes after Sales CRM. Once the Sales has been concluded, there might be some issues cropping up with the product sold, some post-sales support request, some bugs in the product that you have sold, etc. All these things need to be taken care of.
Generally, the after Sales or service requests from existing customers are classified under this CRM type. This type of CRM has features like, Case or Ticket creation, solution management, sending an email with the solution. It also might have some features like that of a knowledge base, which can be referred to by your customer service agents.
For example, You are providing support for the Samsung Galaxy telephone, and an inquiry comes in saying that there is a problem. So, there might be a knowledge base within the CRM, which can guide the CRM agent on steps to be taken.
Analytical CRM systems
Analytical CRMs focus on helping you analyze the customer data you have to gain important insights. Digital tools and platforms now make it easy to collect large quantities of data. But data analysis—the step required to turn that data into something useful for your company—is a difficult feat. In fact, estimates suggest that over half of the data collected by companies never get used.
Your customer data is too valuable for that. So instead, an analytical CRM provides features that help you use the data to see trends in how your customers behave. With that information, you can better understand what steps lead most successfully to sales, increase customer retention and the most common customer problems.
Collaborative CRM systems
A top focus of collaborative CRM systems is breaking down silos. For example, the marketing team, sales reps, and customer support agents are often in different departments that feel disconnected.
And for bigger organizations, each of those departments is further separated based on factors like geographic locations, channels they serve, products they focus on, or skill specialties. But to provide a seamless customer experience throughout the customer’s journey, you need a way to share information across the full organization in real-time.
Collaborative CRMs ensure all teams have access to the same up-to-date customer data, no matter which department or channel they work in. For example, customer support has all the marketing and sales teams collected when working with a prospective customer. Still, agents in a call centre have updated data on customer interactions that happened over email.
That integration between departments and channels saves customers from the dreaded experience of repeating themselves each time they talk to a new contact. Instead, each employee they interact with can quickly and easily pull up a record of all past interactions with the consumer to consult and learn all relevant details.
7 Benefits of Using CRM
Whether you’re a brand new e-commerce startup, an established technology company that develops software, a brick-and-mortar clothing store with a single location, or anything in between, using customer relationship management (CRM) tools can pay dividends for your business.
This article will highlight the key benefits of CRM systems and explain how they can help you organize all of your sales and customer data, build lasting relationships with your clients and customers, and grow your sales performance while improving your customer loyalty.
(Note: If you’re new to CRM software and you’re not quite sure what it is or what it does, check out our CRM Guide for Marketers to learn how CRM tools work and how they can help you understand audience data, grow your business relationships and improve your marketing and sales efforts.)
CRM Benefit #1: Target—and build relationships with—new customers
Each time someone purchases from your online store, subscribes to your newsletter, or clicks on one of your ads.
They’re providing you with valuable new data about your audience. And when you collect all of that data in a CRM platform, you can start using it to make smart decisions about who your target audience is and how best to reach them.
One of the most effective tools that businesses can use to attract new customers is social media advertising. Most social media platforms will allow you to advertise to people based on certain factors—like keywords they use in their posts or profile, their interests, or their industry, just to name a few—but when you have all your customer information stored in one place (like Mailchimp’s all-in-one platform, for example), you unlock a powerful new social media advertising option.
When you create a Facebook or Instagram ad in Mailchimp, for instance, you can use all your existing customer data to create lookalike audiences of your biggest fans and most loyal customers. Then, you can target that new audience with an ad promoting your products, services, or any aspect of your brand that you think might appeal to them. Targeting folks who are likely to love your business is a great way to make your advertising budget go further—and grow your audience, too.
As new people interact with your business by making a purchase or signing up for your mailing list, they’ll be entered into your CRM database, too, so you can quickly identify them and send follow up emails, thank you notes, or anything else that might help you start building a relationship with them.
And once they’ve become big fans and loyal customers themselves, you’ll be able to use their information to help create the next lookalike social media audience you advertise to. It’s like the circle of marketing life, providing one of the biggest benefits of CRM software!
CRM Benefit #2: Strengthen relationships with your current customers
Research shows that finding new customers can be 5 to 25 times more expensive than keeping the customers you already have, so while it’s always important to reach new audiences, you should aim to keep your current customers active and engaged, too.
And when you consolidate all of your customer data into a CRM platform, it’s easy to keep track of who’s buying your stuff, who’s interacting with your marketing campaigns, and who might need a nudge or two to get them back on track.
That way, you’ll always have the information you need to create and send marketing campaigns that keep your existing customers feeling appreciated—and coming back to buy more stuff.
You can use the data collected in your CRM solution to create unique, personalized marketing campaigns for your customers. For example, include their name, content tailored to their interests, and a personal message to thank them for their support and patronage over the years. Suppose you’re using Mailchimp’s Marketing CRM. In that case, you could also include personalized product recommendations based on each customer’s purchase history and use our send time optimization feature to send your emails when folks are most likely to engage with them.
You may also decide to use your sales data to target lapsed customers and tell them all about your latest products or offer them an incentive (like a discount or free shipping) to make another purchase.
And with Mailchimp, you’ll even have access to tools like purchase likelihood and customer lifetime value, so you can identify the customers who are most (or least) likely to repurchase from you, get a general estimate of how much they’ll spend, and target your marketing accordingly.
CRM Benefit #3: View your audience holistically
No matter what type of business you operate, a CRM will allow you to view all of your contacts in a single audience dashboard and then organize them in a way that makes sense for your business. For example, maybe you’d like to group people based on their behaviour, such as their engagement with your last campaign or their purchase history.
You can do that with a CRM. Or, maybe you want to group people based on their location, birthday, or demographics like age and gender. You can do that with a CRM, too. Since a CRM provides you with an aggregate view of your audience data, it’s easy to sift through everything at once and use the stuff you already know about folks to build stronger relationships with them.
Many CRMs will also allow you to apply customized tags to your audience. Tags are unique identifiers that can help you add extra insights for certain audience members that might not have otherwise appeared within your data.
For example, suppose someone has made a purchase from your store and opted into your marketing. In that case, you’ll probably already know their purchase history, shopping preferences, name, and maybe even their location and demographics too.
But there are other things your existing data might not inherently tell you, like if they’re a well known social media influencer, or if they’re a prospective client that you met at a trade show, or if they volunteered at one of your recent events—and that’s where tags can help. When you use tags to add those extra details to your contacts, you’ll always have that information at your fingertips when you need it.
And if Mailchimp is your Marketing CRM, you can even segment and send targeted campaigns based on the tags you’ve created, including automated email campaigns that trigger at the moment you add a specific tag to a contact. Learn more about managing your audience with tags, groups, and segments in Mailchimp.
CRM Benefit #4: Show appreciation to your best customers (and grow your business)
You might not know the Pareto Principle by name, but there’s a good chance that you’re familiar with the concept it supposes: it says that, for many events, 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes. When translated for businesses, this principle suggests that 80% of your overall revenue ultimately comes from only 20% of your customers.
Every customer is valuable, but the folks that make up the 20% are your best, most loyal customers. They’re the people who spend the most money, purchase with the most consistency, and are influential in recommending your product or service to others, too. So it’s particularly important to maintain a strong relationship with these people.
When you store all of your customer data in a CRM, you’ll be able to quickly identify your biggest spenders (and most frequent buyers) or lead generators and reach out to them with special offers, exclusive discounts, etc., allowing you to make better-informed decisions to improve customer experience.
If you connect your store to Mailchimp, for example, you can create segments based on the purchase habits of your customers. Then, you can show your best ones how much you appreciate them by sending a unique coupon or promo code, an invitation to a special event, or even give them early access to your newest items. You can even use our best customer automation to automatically reach out to people based on their shopping or spending. All this will allow you to improve your customer interaction while not leaving your current marketing software.
CRM Benefit #5: Track—and improve—your marketing performance
A CRM centralizes all of your audience data, so your whole team can keep a watchful eye on customer behaviour. It’s a great way to ensure that everyone is on the same page and allows you to monitor what’s working (as well as what isn’t) and identifies customers that might need a little extra nurturing going forward.
For example, by simply monitoring your total number of new prospects or customers, you’ll learn if your acquisition efforts are working effectively or if you need to make a few adjustments to your methods or total spend. Similarly, by tracking the status of your existing contacts (with Mailchimp’s thorough campaign reports or our purchase likelihood tool, for instance) and monitoring your overall churn, you’ll be able to determine if your retention efforts are up to speed or if you need to try a bit harder to keep your existing customers happy.
You can also use your CRM to collect and track your sales and marketing data on a large scale and an individual level. That way, you can see exactly who’s spending money, what they’re buying, and how they’re interacting with your marketing campaigns.
Over time, you’ll notice patterns in the data that not only help you develop more accurate goals for your business but also help you learn what your customers want and talk to them in a smarter, more relevant way. And if you use Mailchimp’s Marketing CRM, you’ll even have access to aggregate data and insights—that you can act on instantly—all in one place on your audience dashboard.
CRM Benefit #6: Save time with automation
If you operate your own business, the chances are that you’ve got quite a few things on your plate, and it probably seems like there’s never enough time to take care of all the stuff on your to-do list, especially in the sales process.
Luckily, a CRM makes it easy to organize all your customer data and insights in one convenient location, so you don’t have to waste time searching multiple databases—perhaps even across multiple departments within your organization—every time you need to pull information, look through sales reports, or work on a marketing campaign.
Once you’ve organized your customer data in a way that makes sense for your business, you can use it to automate many of your daily marketing tasks, like welcome emails, purchase follow-ups, order notification messages, and more.
With Mailchimp, you can set up automated messages to trigger and send based on specific segments or tags, so you’re always sending the right message to the right people at the right time.
For example, if you sell stuff online, you might create abandoned cart emails that send when people add items to their shopping cart and leave without completing the purchase. (Tip: Abandoned cart emails are just as effective as they are easy. With an abandoned cart email series, you can see an average of 34 times more orders per recipient than with bulk email alone.)
Or, if you’ve got a popular blog on your website, you could set up an RSS campaign that allows readers to subscribe and receive an email when you post something new, so they never miss important updates.
CRM Benefit #7: Gain insights to better understand your business
If a CRM only helped you organize and track your customer data, or only saved you time, or only made it easier to build and nurture relationships, it would be a valuable solution for your business.
But when you combine all of those things, a CRM begins to serve an even more important purpose—it helps you develop a better understanding of your audience and, in turn, your business.
A CRM allows you to take a deep dive into your data, so you can learn exactly who your current customers are and how they are interacting with your business. With that information, you’ll be able to make adjustments to your marketing and communication strategies and start connecting with folks in a more efficient, relevant, and cost-effective way. You could even use the data collected in a CRM to make important decisions about your product or service offerings.
Frequently Asked Questions
The SAP CRM applications have been initially an integrated on-premises customer relationship management (CRM) software manufactured by SAP SE which targeted business software requirements for marketing, sales and service of midsize and large organizations in all industries and sectors.
Undeniably the most popular name in the CRM industry, SalesForce has everything your business could ever need. Its Sales Cloud Professional edition offers features like rules-based lead scoring, campaign management, and unlimited custom applications.
Examples of CRM are sorted by types, such as general use, inbound lead management, sales tracking, social tracking, and a fully integrated system. Most software solutions fall into one or two or multiple CRM types. For instance, HubSpot CRM is an inbound marketing CRM, but it has general, all-purpose tools as well.