What is CRM Marketing? Discover the role the systems play in helping you understand your audience to make smarter marketing campaigns.
CRM stands for customer relationship management, or the business of managing existing and prospective customer interactions. Any plan or approach that uses data to build, improve, and manage relationships with every customer technically fits under the term. However, CRM is a term most commonly used to refer to the software-as-a-service and cloud-based software.
CRM technology helps organizations organize, aggregate, and analyze customer information data to manage relationships with their customers. By storing data for existing and potential customers in a CRM, your organization can track information across touchpoints in the customer journey to cater to their needs and build smart customer relationships.
CRM systems also play a vital role in orchestrating customer engagement across the customer lifecycle. They are typically used with marketing automation tools to manage and engage an organization’s relationships and interactions with customers, prospects, partners, vendors and other relationships that are important to their business.
Regardless of size or industry, CRM systems are key for sales, marketing and operations teams to gain a better understanding of their relationships.
The sooner your business begins to capture, organize, and analyze customer data through a CRM system, the sooner your business can start using it to better understand your customer, improve your customer’s experience, increase revenue and drive business outcomes.
How CRMs help create smarter marketing campaigns
With the rapid advancement of modern technology, customers have become increasingly discerning and tech-savvy. They know what they want and look to do business with companies that understand the nuances of their business, have values that align with theirs, and are transparent in communications.
The old method of targeting your entire audience with just one message does not work anymore. These strategies can often lead customers to get frustrated with irrelevant messages and disengage with the brand. The rise of a highly personalized marketing approach aided by data and technology is a primary way to effectively reach customers.
As a result, marketers must analyze data gathered in CRMs to create multi-channel marketing campaigns that aim to engage new customers, existing customers, and leads.
Below are three ways a CRM can help you create better marketing campaigns, improving your chances of increasing engagement and loyalty among customers as well as earning business from prospects:
Marketers need to send targeted messages that appeal to their audience, but it can be challenging to know what products or services a customer wants.
Fortunately, CRM software can store a great deal of information on contact preferences and behavior to you make informed decisions.
As marketers, you want to be able to segment customers by more than just industry, jobs, and age. Other segments that matter are user activities, responses, website activity, and email marketing activity.
This information, much of which can be found in a CRM, can help you create detailed profiles of your target audiences.
Once you know who your target audience is and what they’re interested in, you’re ready to create targeted marketing campaigns with personalized messages.
Choosing the best marketing CRM for your business
As you explore options for CRM systems, it’s important to consider your company’s specific needs because the system you ultimately choose will depend on how your business operates and sells to customers.
Here are some key things to consider when choosing a CRM:
- Who will be using the CRM? Consider everyone in your business who can benefit from access to customer activities and find the best tool that can accommodate their needs.
- How do you plan to use the CRM? It is important to understand upfront what your planned usage is for a CRM because that could impact the system you choose.
- How do you connect with your audience? You’ll want to look for a CRM that can integrate with the systems and channels you regularly use.
- Do you plan to scale your CRM as you grow? It is important to get the right tools that allow you to add functionality as you’re ready for it. But also, if there are CRM features you’ll likely never use, you’ll want to consider that upfront to avoid the additional cost.
Why customer relationship management matters to your business
CRM tools can help provide your organization with a complete view of your customers, prospects, vendors, partners and other relationships through a simple, customizable system.
Your marketing team can use a CRM to provide data that assists in developing and managing campaigns as well as providing qualified leads to sales teams. CRMs also help your marketing team better understand the sales pipeline – the path from initial prospect to closed sale – and quality of leads coming in, helping improve the accuracy of future forecasting.
Some of the biggest gains in making a shift to customer-centricity comes from moving customer relationship management beyond sales and marketing to internalizing strategies into your business. From customer service, to finance and supply chain management, a CRM helps ensure you keep an eye on customer needs as your business continues to grow.