Improving the efficacy of your customer relationship management workflows isn’t just a good goal. In today’s competitive markets, it’s a business imperative. Because of that, you need technology capable of managing all external interactions with customers.
Remember, the customer relationship management life cycle starts with your marketing department, moves over to sales, hands off to operations, and ends up back at sales and marketing. At that point, you’re more focused on maintaining the relationship with your customer and possibly upselling.
The way you handle customer interactions at each step of the cycle makes a big difference in successfully retaining customers or losing them to churn. What can you do to improve the efficiency of these processes? Investing in the right software along with smart marketing automation makes all the difference.
Microsoft Dynamics is a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platform capable of streamlining, automating, and organizing all functions tied to making your team more effective at keeping customers happy and loyal to your brand.
WHAT IS CUSTOMER RELATIONSHIP MANAGEMENT?
Customer relationship management is about defining the guidelines, principles, and practices your organization follows to guide interactions with customers. Ideally, your company achieves outcomes that improve your customer service relationships, boosting customer retention efforts, and driving business growth.
Thanks to advances in technology, people have more ways than ever to connect with businesses. Customers may reach out to you through your company website, via email, or through one of your established social media channels.
There are many benefits to using CRM software to manage your customer relationships, including:
- Aggregating essential customer info
- Tracking customer interactions
- Keep up with sales performance goals
- Making customer info available throughout an organization
Instead of having customer data stored in disparate databases and file systems throughout the company, the Dynamics 365 CRM provides companies with a one-stop-shop for every business area that needs access to customer info.
FIVE CUSTOMER RELATIONSHIP MANAGEMENT EXAMPLES
One of the benefits of a CRM solution like Dynamics 365 is that it provides you with analytics and automation capabilities that you might otherwise purchase separately. Let’s look at some CRM examples in real life, the type you might implement within your organization using Dynamics 365.
1. AUTOMATING CONSISTENT RESPONSES
A critical component of excellent relationship management is ensuring every customer who reaches out with a question or issue receives a response. For example, when a customer emails you about a missed shipping deadline or receiving the wrong product, you can set your CRM platform up to automate an immediate “We’re on it” response. That way, you keep the conversation going while your human reps take the time to research the issue and respond with a more personalized contact.
2. ENABLING BUSINESS ANALYTICS
Data is a hot commodity, and so are tools capable of breaking the information down into valuable insights. The Microsoft Dynamics CRM helps businesses spot trends that can represent opportunities or problems that could escalate.
One of the best examples of CRM usage is leveraging the Dynamics 365 platform to analyze customer segments having issues with a specific product. Your CRM makes it possible for you to come up with a fix before the situation escalates into a company-wide problem.
3. MANAGING CUSTOMER FEEDBACK
Customers like having options for reaching out to a company. For example, many Wells Fargo customers like to reach out via the company’s social media accounts. The way Wells Fargo uses its solution to track and respond to client inquiries left on all their social media accounts is a great CRM example.
Instead of leaving customers hanging, Wells Fargo agents can quickly detect the interaction and improvise a quick response. In additon, the enterprise utilizes CRM software through the cloud to provide the most effective customer service and streamlined efficiencies across the enterprise.
4. TRACKING CUSTOMER ACTIVITY
Per CIO magazine, another CRM example you might want to consider for your organization is using your CRM to track customer activity throughout their lifecycle—from prospect to existing client upsell. Tracking key behaviors from social media posts to content click rates on an email campaign will help your company understand what’s important to customers and what isn’t.
5. COORDINATING BETWEEN APPLICATIONS
Another example of better customer relationship management is improving efficiency by syncing Dynamics 365 with applications used to manage customer interactions, including:
- Mobile phones
- Email inboxes
Having a CRM that goes where you go will improve the customer experience. At the same time, syncing data across applications will lessen duplicate work. A CRM should allow you to move between multiple platforms while updating data in real-time.
The good news is that many of the resources necessary to implement the above sophisticated processes are available within Dynamics CRM. However, if you purchase a more limited CRM platform, you would likely have to expend resources on:
- Purchasing different applications to expand the CRM’s capabilities
- Training employees on using each application
- Working out ways to integrate the solutions
With Microsoft Dynamics CRM, you get everything necessary to create a robust, end-to-end customer relationship management system. You get automation, reporting, and analytics viewable through convenient, user-friendly dashboards.
Now that we’ve gone over some customer relationship management examples that show you how a CRM platform can help your organization handle customer interactions more efficiently, let's expand on expanding our understanding of answers to the question, “What is a customer management system?”
We’ll also learn more about why it’s important to automate your customer relationship management. In addition, we’ll look at how Dynamics can improve the power of your marketing and sales teams while keeping in constant contact with potential customers so that when they’re ready to buy, they’ll think of you first.
EXAMPLES OF CRM MARKETING AUTOMATION
Marketing is made up of dozens upon dozens of tedious tasks. Automating these tasks is a smart way to improve the efficiency of everyone that connects with customers and leads. Some CRM examples of automation include:
- Sending out a thank you when a customer makes a purchase.
- Upsell or cross-sell a client if they purchase a particular product.
- Offering a birthday greeting with a promo code.
- Sending a discount to a customer that hasn’t made a purchase recently.
- Tying a content download to a specific product pitch.
- Notifying current customers when a new product has been launched.
- Sending an email to people that abandon purchases in their shopping cart without buying.
- Offering “just in time” ordering.
- Notifying customers when an item on their wish list goes on sale.
- Providing after-the-sale support in the form of a helpful how-to or tips on how to upgrade.
- Sending customers information on new products they might be interested in, based on prior purchases.
- Conducting customer satisfaction surveys
All of these automation ideas can be coordinated within the context of other marketing campaigns to include print or web advertising or even “warm” calls from sales reps. The point is that your CRM will let you stagger automation into your regular sales and marketing efforts to create a long-term drip campaign.
These campaigns can nurture even the most reluctant buyer into converting. Marketing automation ups the ante on sales prospecting activity while cutting the amount of time wasted on mundane tasks. Using Dynamics 365 in this way is one of many customer relationship management examples that showcase the power of the platform.
ADDITIONAL CRM EXAMPLES WITH DYNAMICS 365
It’s important to realize that these CRM examples and customer relationship management techniques are focused on external communications with clients. But a customer relationship management platform can also use automation to improve internal activities.
For example, you could use Dynamics 365 to customize and automate sales reports each week to go to internal staff. Another CRM example is having contracts generated by a sales team funneled through an internal decision-tree during an approval process. Then, when the contract is completed, it could ping billing or operations to let them know to proceed with a project.
Automation can occur tied to a set of various triggers that are manual or automatic. For example, automatic triggers could launch a process tied to new contract creation. One of many CRM examples in real life is tracking when a customer downloads a white paper. When that happens, the platform could alert a particular sales rep in that territory to follow up with the potential customer. The point is that you set the workflows by letting the software take on many of these basic tasks.
This automation is likely in the form of an email, but it certainly doesn’t have to be. Today’s CRMs are highly sophisticated. Here’s one potential customer relationship management workflow to consider:
- Step 1 — Potential customer downloads a white paper from a landing page.
- Step 2 — The data captured from the landing page can automatically be loaded into the CRM.
- Step 3 — The data can also be added to a weekly report for a sales manager to see the number of new leads coming in.
- Steps 4, 5 and 6 — It can also send a series of emails to the potential customer spread out over a few weeks.
- Step 7 — If the lead still hasn’t made a purchase, automation can trigger a tickler in the CRM for the sales rep to call them.
- Step 8 — After the sales rep calls the lead if they make a purchase, it triggers contract automation. If they don’t, depending on the CRM flag added by the sales rep, the lead could start to receive regular “cold” automated messages to get them more familiar with the brand.
The Online Marketing Institute says it takes seven to 13 touches with a prospective lead before they are converted to a sale. If this is true, why not make the best use of your sales team by letting marketing automation warm up the leads for your sales reps. Using smarter marketing techniques and customer relationship management techniques will improve your sales team’s productivity and as well as your bottom line.
That’s how powerful customer relationship management software can be. That's why, if you're asking yourself the question, "what is a customer management system," it's important to know how effective they can be for your business.
HOW CAN MICROSOFT DYNAMICS IMPROVE CUSTOMER RELATIONSHIPS?
If customers don’t trust you, they won’t buy your products. Your choice of CRM provides your company with an opportunity to effectively build and maintain a positive reputation as a thought leader in the marketplace. By arming your front-end sales team and your backend marketing and data analytics staff with a powerful customer relationship management tool like Dynamics 365, you can directly impact ROI through new sales, repeat customers, and increased lead generation.
A CRM can automate manual processes and enforce best practices for a sales team by tracking and reporting on their activities. But these best-in-class platforms can also improve the customer relationship by automatically supplying new clients with the information they need when they need it most.
Sophisticated customer relationship management tools like Microsoft Dynamics can be applied across the organization, not just as part of external sales. Integrating the CRM across the client's lifecycle will improve retention and increase new sales.
Additional customer relationship management examples include leveraging your platform to:
- Keep client data consistent
- Scrub email bounces out of the database
- Add signed contracts to the customer record
Because Dynamics is in the cloud, these changes can happen in real-time, creating a unified 360-view of customer service, sales, and marketing. There is simply no better software for maintaining an accurate picture of your clients and prospects.
EXPERIENCE THE POWER OF DYNAMICS 365
Learn for yourself how you can transform customer relationship management within your company with Dynamics 365. Contact IES today to demonstrate how having the right tools can make customer management easier and more effective.