A case for CRM
Everyone remembers the twilight time of creating a nascent business – you probably had an embarrassingly low number of customers, you were tracking everything in Excel spreadsheets, your monitor was littered with Post-It notes and you always had half an hour of anxiety right before you turned in for the night as your struggled to remember that ONE thing you had definitely forgotten to do that day.
Modern software has revolutionized the way we run business and manage customers. There are only two schools of thinking in the business right now – and the old school of marketing is dying a slow, slow death – it is more evident than ever that right now marketing has come to evolve or die.
Play to your strengths
Undoubtedly, as a business owner, there are things you’re amazing at, and there are things that you don’t understand and would rather not dabble in. This is normal, and the best advice given by the most successful people is to play to your strengths, and hire someone to do the things you would rather not do, which might make you lose motivation.
Unfortunately, customer management, to-do lists, followups, etc fall into the “Dislikes” camp for a lot of marketers. This is a fatal trap, and leads to many a business collapsing.
The best solution to this is to invest in automation software, and many CRMs have been designed exactly to fit this need. In this article, we take a detailed look at our favourite CRM – Infusionsoft – and give you compelling reasons why you should switch to a CRM, today.
- Your Excel spreadsheets aren’t cutting it
If you’re still tracking your data and customers in a spreadsheet somewhere, you need to stop now and switch to an automation system. There’s data lost in translation that could cost you a large amount of money in the long term. Moreover, the person in charge of updating the spreadsheet is probably human, and thus, prone to error and laziness.
When you find yourself entering into the double letters of your spreadsheet columns, the Find button returns way too much data and makes you pull out your hair, you know you need to switch to automation software.
Do you have little post it notes with customer names and information and to do lists? CRM automates all your tracking, storing and measuring and makes sure nothing slips through the cracks and available to you in handy report at the click of a button.
2. Your relationships need to be stronger
Marketing is so many times about selling yourself rather than your product. With the world of autoresponders, humanity is slowly seeping out of marketing and dehumanising what used to be a highly personal process. CRM brings back the personal touch to your marketing campaigns.
With the ability to track likes, dislikes, birthdates, anniversaries, dog’s name, cat’s name, favourite pizza topping etc, CRM can inject a major touch of personalisation into your marketing campaigns. You can segment your email list according to your most frequent buyers, and also get a list of the people who love reading your emails, but end up never buying. With this power in your hand, you can tailor craft your campaigns to maximize conversions.
By letting your customers know how much you appreciate their business, you can automate followups by sending them exclusive discount coupons, a free test period of the new software you’re launching and many, many other methods to build powerful relationships with your customers that last a lifetime.
3. You bleed money without realising it
Chances are, that without a CRM, you’re losing a lot of revenue through the cracks. This could be through a lot of different reasons:
- You forget to chase leads
- You forget customer history
- You don’t track customer buying history – and are not in a position to offer relevant upsells
- You can’t test email performance and don’t know which ones convert better
- You don’t have access to detailed sales analytics and reports.
All of these seem like tiny “misses”, but add up to huge numbers and account for a lot of missed yearly revenue. CRMs can help streamline all the above processes.
4. You’re not a stickler for details
That’s fine. You don’t need to be. You probably have a domain that you’re amazing at, and others which you’re not – and that’s fine, as long as everything works in synchronicity. If you really hate post-sale followups – automate them! If you don’t like sending 10 different emails to different groups of people – automate it!
CMR applications give your team and you full unlimited access to all your data, at any time. They help you get more organized and create Tasks to remind you about everything you need to complete, and an ability to monitor historical data as well.
5. You’re not tracking and testing everything
Off the top of your head, could you quickly count how many successful projects you had this quarter? Do you have a good idea about your Conversion Ratio, your KPIs and the best email you sent out this month?
CRM puts important metrics right on your dashboard. A good business survives by replicating and scaling exactly what works – and CRMs are getting exceedingly good at doing just that. How about measuring your stats through CRM at the end of your month and realizing that if you apply Pareto’s Principle to your business, you could completely eliminate cold calling and save a major chunk of your time and effort? CRMs enable you to make those decisions. You have the ability to create custom reports laced with all the performance indicators that you prefer.
6. You don’t acknowledge your best customers
Infusionsoft gives you access to Lead Scoring – which tells you in no unclear terms which of your customers have been the most engaged and involved in your marketing. It uses a special algorithm to “score” customers according to the following actions: clicking on links you sent them, spending time on your site, buying your products, opening your emails, etc.
By keeping your Lead Score in mind, you can separate and laser target your most engaged customers by offering them relevant upsells, special discount codes, free subscriptions etc to communicate their “elite” status.
7. You’re not personal enough with your customers
Using CRM, you can store limitless data about your customers – birthdays, anniversaries, purchase dates, etc. Using this information, you can inject a personal touch into your email marketing.
Aside from this, you can segment your email list according to demographics Using segmentation, you can market to different types of customers and personalize your emails to suit your customers’ needs. For example, dividing your list according to age, gender, location, spending habits etc will yield higher ROIs than a general email blast to your whole list.
8. Your reports aren’t thorough
CRM softwares generate highly detailed, perfectly accurate reports, consolidating all the metrics you need to ensure accurate comparisons between sales periods. Here are a few Infusionsoft reports that will help you analyse critical metrics:
- Email statistics reports
- Web Form Analytics
- Order and Sales reports
- Customer Reports
9. Your customer’s aren’t Wowed enough
Using Infusionsoft, you can employ a host of post-sales follow-up sequences, including sending gifts or other tokens of your gratitude towards your customers. You can set up systems that range from a simple thank you mail a week after purchase, to automatically sending them an SMS or send a gift to them from Amazon.com. The possibilities are endless, and the whole process can be automated completely by setting up appropriate sales funnels in Campaign Builder.
10. You’re not harnessing the awesome power of the Infusionsoft API
Infusionsoft has built a powerful and easy to use API that you can integrate into your mobile applications, your WordPress websites etc. We’ve built a membership plugin that harnesses the power of your Infusionsoft Tags to selectively grant or deny access to content on your WordPress website to your users. We’ve also built plugins to connect the most popular eCommerce plugin (WooCommerce) with Infusionsoft, as well as popular Learning Management Systems like Sensei and LearnDash.
Infusionsoft can also pull your data from any pre-existing systems that you might be using – for ex: MailChimp, Aweber etc. It also integrates seamlessly into LeadPages or OptimizePress to make sure all the data viable prospects fill into your website is sent straight into your IS backend.
Once you’re up and running on a CMS like Infusionsoft, you can make it permeate into most aspects of your online presence. Click here to watch a quick demo on how Infusionsoft can help turn your business around.