Customer relationship management or CRM principles refer to the, Priniciples practices, and guidelines that an organization follows when interacting with its clients. From an organizational point of view, this whole relationship encompasses direct interactions with customers, such as sales and service processes, forecasting and analyzing customer trends and behaviors.
CRM is a business management software package (PGI), based on a set of client data. The objective of the CRM priniciples is to optimize the processes of the company by centralizing all exchanges and interactions between members of the company, customers of the company, suppliers and / or prospects.
Therefore, each company must do everything to establish good relations with customers. Establishing long-term relationships with customers is the key to effective marketing and contributes to customer experience.
To achieve these goals, you need the right tools and CRM tools are very useful for this. They manage contacts with customers, allow an effective analysis of the company’s processes and allow possible changes in operational strategy.
What is a CRM tool and why is it interesting to use them ?
Usually called CRM system, CRM tool, CRM software or simply CRM, the term CRM comes from the English expression “Customer Relationship Management. In French, we can translate this into “Customer relationship management.
Generally available as CRM online, this tool aims to establish long-term relationships with customers in order to increase the profitability of the business and reduce the overall costs of the business.
The CRM system collects and integrates all important information concerning current or potential customers of the company in order to better know them. It mainly focuses on analyzing customer needs and behaviors, learning their preferences and understanding their purchasing decisions. In the CRM system, you store your customers’ data (telephone number, e-mail address, exchange history, etc.) in the same place and your contacts are available on the same platform accessible to all those involved in the sale process or in customer service.
The 3 main functions of the CRM system
Nowadays, managing customer relationships in companies involves activities such as :
– Anticipate customer needs
– Offer customers additional products and services
– Ensure customer loyalty
To manage this, the CRM system relies on three basic functions: acquiring, optimizing and maintaining the customer relationship. Here is briefly each of these functions.
1. Acquire customers.
The company informs its client and prospective contacts in the CRM database and the tool matches the products and services to the needs of each customer thanks to the pre-purchase signals from customers and by offering them excellent service.
2. Optimizing customer relationships.
This aims to increase the value of sales per customer thanks to the CRM system which helps you for example to achieve cross-selling (cross-selling, sale of similar or complementary products), up-selling (encouraging customers to buy a more expensive version of a product, for example, encouraging them to buy a full version of software).
The CRM also makes it possible to compare your client’s journey from the first contact to the purchase and to compare it with the situations in which the purchase did not take place, you will thus determine which stages were decisive in its transition to purchase. Thanks to this, you are able to develop an efficient sales funnel.
The CRM also allows you to segment your clients into interest groups. It will teach you to distinguish important customers from those who no longer buy the company’s products. Observe the relationships you have with current customers, their current needs, analyze them and determine their future needs.
3. Maintain the customer relationship. This involves acquiring new knowledge about customers, which will increase customer service capacities and the development of new products adapted to the needs of existing customers and encourage employees to make efforts to retain their customers. Analysis of CRM data allows you to ask useful questions. For example: “How many contacts does it take to convert a prospect ? . Because as good salespeople say, when a customer says “No”, it usually means “Not today.
In addition to these 3 major functions, CRM systems allow the automation of activities such as :
– Communication with the client (establish contacts with the client, encourage them to exchange, etc.)
– Personalization of sales
– The implementation of personalized advertising campaigns by client groups and sometimes even targeted by client
– Determination of the value of the client’s portfolio
– Analysis of the client’s purchasing logic
– The proposal of specific discounts for products or for certain customers
– Anticipation of future client behavior
– Monitor and analyze the number of prospects acquired, treated and lost
Analyzing these processes will be easier and more efficient thanks to CRM, but it will of course be necessary to train employees to work precisely with the data and draw the appropriate conclusions.
What are the modules integrated into CRM systems
There are 3 types of modules integrated into the CRM: an operational module, an interactive module and an analytical module. What are these CRM modules characterized by ?
1. The operational part of the CRM collects and provides information on transactions and exchanges between the company and the client. The operational CRM is used in areas such as customer service, order management, product catalog billing or sales.
2. The interactive part of the CRM is used to ensure exchanges between the company and its customers or business partners (such as suppliers). The CRM will ensure the customer management, the loyalty program, complaints, management of comments, orders, etc. The CRM also synchronizes the customer’s data with the sales channels.
3. The analytical part of the CRM is used to carry out a precise analysis of the information acquired on customers. In addition, the CRM analyzes and interprets data relating to customers and their purchasing behavior, then creates reports from this information which will then allow the company to personalize the marketing, sales and service actions by client or group of clients.
How to set up a CRM system ?
The implementation of the customer relationship management strategy obliges the company to answer 2 fundamental questions :
1. What does the company want to achieve thanks to its CRM tool ? The introduction of the CRM system can have very different objectives, ranging from increasing sales to improving communication with customers, including planning the specific needs of each customer.
2. How does the company want to achieve these goals ? For example, if the company wants specific customer groups to buy more products, there is a need to improve communication with these customers or to direct them to a more sustained marketing campaign.
Good management of the customer relationship and knowledge of their needs directly affect sales. An American Express study has shown that as many as 86% of customers agree to pay more if customer service is good. If you implement a CRM system and train employees correctly, you will certainly notice an increase in your profits.
The last word
Given the complexity of the company’s activities, the number of procedures as well as the diversity of the client portfolio, it is essential to maintain the consistency of the company’s activities thanks to the CRM. It is important to clearly define the client’s journey, to determine the number of people who will participate in the processes (which must take place and at what stage). because if a potential customer receives a commercial offer from several salespeople, he will be bored. Likewise, if the after-sales service contacts the same customer several times, they will be annoyed. A professional enterprise must avoid such situations. In summary, CRM systems are a great help for businesses because they allow you to effectively run your business and minimize the costs of acquiring new customers.