Today’s markets are entirely controlled by the customers. Long gone are the days when businesses decided what value they wanted to provide to the public, and with minimal competition in place, the customers had no choice but to accept the status quo.
This was largely contributed by the absence of a substantial forum where customers could easily voice their product requirements and grievances. With the advent of technology, and the invention of interconnected digital networks, customers can now research and compare products with relative ease, and provide feedback so that the company can tailor the products to their needs.
Another by-product of this technological boom is the creation of various digital communication channels, through which customers could not only interact with a company and their product or service offerings, but also with each other to share their business experiences.
A modern marketer must understand the industry dynamics and realize that a business must revolve around the customer and provide value to their needs. The first step to achieving that is to understand the customer and obtain a full view of them; this requires substantial and relevant customer data. Fortunately, most customers are more than willing to provide information about themselves – in exchange for personalized services – through the aforementioned channels, which range from brick-and-mortar establishments, emails, phone calls, website visits, social networking sites, etc.
The major challenge with having multiple sources of customer information is the complexity involved in processing all of it. More often than not, a company prefers allocating distinct channels to different marketing teams, which usually does more bad than good for effective data management. The common issues include duplication of data, lack of data centralization for truly complete profiles, mismanagement of marketing campaigns based on the scattered data, etc. This is where adopting an efficient CRM software service for your marketing efforts can come in handy.
Some of the ways in which you can reap benefits from integrating your marketing with CRM include:
- Provides a 360⁰ view of your customer
You cannot effectively market your products and services if you do not know who you are marketing them to. Instead of randomly pushing out campaigns, it is important to understand what the customer needs and expects from your product. This data can be obtained by listening to what the customers are saying through the various communication channels and then funneling all of it into a centralized CRM database to ensure that you don’t lose out on the important bits of information.
The CRM database allows you to study your customer’s behavior on different channels and their preferences, which in turn equips you with the tools to tune your products into something that will perfectly resonate with them. This not only results in engaged and happy customers, but also lets you predict emerging trends and adapt accordingly.
- Allows you to custom-fit your marketing campaigns
Customers do not restrict themselves to a single communication channel when interacting with a company, and can even seamlessly switch amongst them to their convenience. With that in mind, you must aim to capture their attention in the most meaningful way, irrelevant of what channel is being utilized for that purpose. What this implies is that the customer must not have distorted views or experiences about a company based on where they choose to engage with you – this creates the wrong business image in their mind.
A CRM software service gives you the ability to work on cross-channel marketing campaigns, which has the benefit of sending a consistent message across each and every channel or platform that is used by the customer. When coupled with an appropriate value proposition, a good marketing campaign can considerably boost customer satisfaction and improve customer retention rates.
- Delivers reports and analytics on marketing performance
It is important for marketers to realize that the customer engagement process doesn’t end when the product or service is delivered. Every company should aim to create long-term relationships with their customers since it not only creates a reliable source of revenue, but makes it more likely to obtain more customers through referrals.
CRM analytics and reporting tools are extremely efficient at understanding campaign performance and success. By studying patterns in the data present in the CRM database, you can gain valuable insight into your processes, and figure out where the customers are the most and least receptive. This lets you proactively improve your messages, so that the right message is relayed to the right people at the right time, and through the appropriate channel.