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Posts Tagged ‘Business sales cycle’

CRM going Social

There has been a lot of buzz over the past couple of years about this new concept of marketing called as “Social Customer Relationship Management”, this blog aims at putting some light on the Concept , how it works, and how the data is gathered and fed into CRM systems to do further analysis.


*Concept – Social CRM & Social Media Marketing

Social media sites like Twitter, LinkedIn and Face-book are amplifying the voice of people in the marketplace and are having profound and far-reaching effects on the ways in which people buy. Customers can now research companies online and then ask for recommendations through social media channels, making their buying decision without contacting the company. People also use social media to share opinions and experiences on companies, products and services. As social media is not as widely moderated or censored as mainstream media, individuals can say anything they want about a company or brand, positive or negative.

Increasingly, companies are looking to gain access to these conversations and take part in the dialogue. More than a few systems are now integrating to social networking sites. Social media promoters cite a number of business advantages, such as using online communities as a source of high-quality leads and a vehicle for crowd sourcing solutions to client-support problems. Companies can also leverage client stated habits and preferences to “hyper-target” their sales and marketing communications

What Data to gather and How?

With access to such a huge resource of real-time prospective customer data, marketing communication’s need to be planned and executed properly. Advantages of undertaking this strategy are High-quality leads & to provide user-friendly, cost effective and participatory platform for customers to find instant solutions to their problems.

Customers looking for a product or service would express their views on an open platform, where other members help in, by providing more information and adding personal experiences, helping in short-listing the best fit for his requirements.

Companies could monitor these discussions and suggest their product and services to people looking for them; they should start profiling these new contacts to understand them and their future needs better,

They could also add current customers to their company’s online community and increase fan following, this increases brand loyalty and ensures repeat sales. Various social engineering techniques can be used to study each customer better, this would not only help cross selling other services to that customer but also would generate a database which on analysis would give valuable insights on changing customer preferences, and hot industry trends.

How it affects company’s overall CRM strategy?

Social CRM will mean different things to different companies, the goal is to first understand the business challenge and then to make a SM supporting strategy to reach that goal, different companies would want different things and a sound strategy to achieve that goal needs to be formulated before the company enters into Social CRM.

Data gathered over time from such sources could be fed into company’s CRM infrastructure, and can later be used to analyse for better decision making.

NOTES:-

*Source Wikipedia.org

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DISCLAIMER: – IDEAL CRM, blog post is a personal collection of  Research Oriented information, Focusing  on CRM and Customer-Centric Web strategies, comments or opinions expressed on this blog are those of the individual contributors only, and do not necessarily represent views of  coAction.com ,Readers may copy and redistribute blog postings on other blogs, or otherwise for private, non-commercial or journalistic purposes. This Content may not be used for any other purposes, in any other formats or media. The content on blog is provided on “as-is” basis, coAction.com shall not be liable for any damages whatsoever arising out of the content or the use of this blog.

 

CRM is not enough, its time to switch to ODBC

It’s time for some radical changes in Business CRM software industry, why?

With the Introduction of On-Demand Business Collaboration (ODBC) technology, working on   your company CRM just got a whole new meaning, equipped with a Hosted Collaboration Space {Task Management, Email Management, Document Management, Project Management, integrated Google calendar, other useful applications} supporting different user tasks, with dedicated applications for Sales, Support and Receivable’s Management, and  comfortable User Interface, ensuring optimum performance by the sales team and in time highest Return on Investment ROI.

ODBC’s Customizable User Interface provides different Micro and Macro level Business Intelligence Tools that help management optimize the Business sales cycle {Generate demand > Qualify Prospects > Close the sale > Deliver & Install > Provide Support } and helps better understand the Consumers Buying cycle {Gather Information > Evaluate Solution’s > Purchase > Take Delivery > Get Support }, with valuable insights in consumer behavior and their needs, data gathered helps immensely in fine tuning Sales processes before being sent to the Research and Development Team for developing new products or services to enhance customer experience and ensure repeated sales.

Another very useful concept of optimizing the different Routes or Channels to the customer is also sufficiently aided using ODBC technology. These Routes are basically an efficient combination of internal or external resources that move the customer from the beginning to the end of the Sales Cycle. this Routes-to-Market methodology also helps vendors plan, operate and optimize their routes, this is important because properly Optimized routes produce more revenue and profit per dollar spent on marketing, sales, distribution and customer service”,  meaning Highest ROI.

Management can use these highly customizable micro Business Intelligence tools available in ODBC technology to,

1)    Optimize Routes

2)    Sales process alignment

3)    Automate repetitive processes

4)    Use User Input

5)    Different System’s Integration

6)    Educate and empower all system users and hence add incremental improvements over time.

Each of these above mentioned concepts play a crucial role in determining the success of CRM Implementation in a organization and ROI time, to help those who are new to these concepts, I would like to elaborate a few lines explaining each of these new age ODBC based concepts,

Once the sales channels or routes have been established, the entire sales process needs to be aligned this means that the management must match the way people actually use the system and its outputs, this will help them make effective changes when people and processes change & simplify user screens, decision tree maps or indicators placed on the screen at different stages of a sale help make sales executives make a more alert and confident sale.

Management can also automate repetitive processes to help save time during a sales process; system can be configured to pop out different pop-ups with useful information or help gather additional customer data.

User, which in this case would be the sales representative is using the system first hand and might have useful insights, suggesting changes to make the process more user friendly, these suggestions should also be taken into account by the management.

If possible management should integrate different systems used in the organization, like mobile CRM used by on field sales representatives, back office staff, ERP software used in organization, this will provide management a complete 360 degree customer centric view, which would help them serve the customer better by designing policies and practices accordingly.

Last but not the least management should impart not only initial training but should conduct features training on regular basis to educate the employees on these changes, this would in turn make employees more knowledgeable and capable of giving valuable feedback, which can be further used to do Research and development and to include incremental improvements over time.

DISCLAIMER: – IDEAL CRM, blog post is a personal collection of  Research Oriented information, Focusing  on CRM and Customer-Centric Web strategies, comments or opinions expressed on this blog are those of the individual contributors only, and do not necessarily represent views of  coAction.com ,Readers may copy and redistribute blog postings on other blogs, or otherwise for private, non-commercial or journalistic purposes. This Content may not be used for any other purposes, in any other formats or media. The content on blog is provided on “as-is” basis, coAction.com shall not be liable for any damages whatsoever arising out of the content or the use of this blog.