How a CRM Helps Business Development and Business Relationship

Today it’s critical for every business to have a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system in place to manage social selling and your sales pipeline. With over 300 CRMs available, choosing the right one is a bit of a nightmare. Nevertheless, this is something you should do since your business really has a lot to gain from you spending time here.

Turn Each Employee into a Salesperson

Although you probably already have a dedicated business development or sales team that’s responsible for generating new business, you need to make sure everyone is on the right page. This is even more important if you own a small business without these types of teams in place – one in which everyone has a duty to help generate leads and fill the business development pipeline. Having a CRM system that’s simple to understand and easy to use, one that isn’t too confusing or frustratingwill help decrease the risk of losing new business.

Create a Central Repository for Client Intelligence

The foundation of your business is built on the relationships you’ve built with your clients. This is why it’s important to know your clients’ business inside out. It’s even more important though to have all this updated information in one place where your entire team can access it. You don’t want to risk alienating or losing an account because one of your employees leaves unexpectedly. When you leverage the power of your CRM you’ll still have all the latest information about every client at any time. This is also beneficial when you’re training new employees.

Easily Navigate the Extended Sales Process

Immediately setting to work to build trust with your clients, showing them why you’re a leader in your niche is important. If you have a long, arduous sales process in place you’ll need to do a skillful tap-dance to maintain communication with your client without suffocating them with your attention. A CRM can help you maintain a regular schedule of checking in with themso you’re sure your company is always in the forefront of their mind. This is a great way to move the sales process along so when they’re ready you can finalize the sale.

Facilitate Effective and Efficient Communication

Success with CRM quotes; you should also use your CRM to facilitate effective and efficient business development. Use it to track email, meetings and phone conversations. By making sure that your CRM is available via mobile devices and that the entire process is streamlined everyone will remain in the loop when it comes to having current knowledge about your clients. They can also easily create reports regarding key contact information, sales opportunities’ status, and service issues’ status and their resolution. They can also segment, classify and organize contacts, company accounts, sales opportunities and customer service tickets so they’re easier to quickly review.

When it comes to reports you’ll want to be able to easily track a lot of business intelligence metrics such as:

  • Which marketing campaigns are generating qualified leads

  • How long it takes your sales staff to follow up with leads

  • Who’s performing best

  • How long it takes to follow-up and fix service issues

  • What business key performance indications (KPI) are trending positive and which ones you need to review

  • A comparison of year-to-date customer and product sales

  • What up-selling and cross-promoting works best for your customer base

Make Workflow Easier and Faster Through Automation

This is a great way to automate your business development processes (e.g. automated responses to web and email requests). Doing so will cut costs and improve your bottom line. For this to work your CRM will need to:

  • Be agile enough to quickly change processes

  • Institutionalize best practices

  • Have repeatable processes that it uses to improve time and cost effectiveness

  • Automate manual tasks

Business Development with Gmail CRM Integration

You shouldn’t stop with your CRM, but you should also use renowned CRM application. There are a lot of different ones that are available for you to choose from today. However, the most critical integration is Google Mail (a.k.a. Gmail) because it’s the most widely used messaging and collaboration platform today with about 900 million users. Since so many interactions happen via Gmail, it’s ideal to integrate it within your CRM so they work in complete synchronization with one another. Doing so ensures that your employees receive a consolidated view of all your customers, leads and partners and their interactions all at once from a single interface.This will save them a lot of time since they won’t have to open separate tabs for Gmail and the CRM you’re using. It also saves you the trouble of maintaining two sets of customer data platforms.

Some of the other key benefits of Gmail integration within your CRM include:

  • Better manage client and partner relationships since you’ll have a consolidated view of all email communication

  • Promptly respond to all email and follow-up with your clients and perspective clients since you can respond to everyone through a single platform

  • Easily collaborate with and share Gmail information with your entire team through the CRM

Choosing the Right CRM to Make all These Things Possible

All of these are great reasons to use a CRM, but you’re still “stuck” with trying to find the right one for you company. The Nimble Blog says you should use the 80/20 rule when selecting a CRM system. This breaks down as:

  • Get one that does 80% of your key requirements from the start.

  • Make sure that the CRM’s more complex features can do the next 10% of your requirements OK-to-well. This may require assistance from integrated third party applications that you can implement within the next 9-18 months.

  • Only 10% of your CRM should require detailed customization. These should be in regard to things like implementation timescales, budgets and ongoing costs. This should have nothing to do with your key requirements, but simply be things that it’d be great to have.

Hopefully this information will help you find a great CRM for your business soon.

Author: Chakraborty

Dr Chakrabarty is the Chief Innovation Officer of IntuiComp TeraScience. Earlier she was Assistant Professor of Delhi University, a QS ranked university in India. Before that she has held research positions in IITs and IISc. She holds 2 patents and over 20 publications in her name. Her area of research is in smart technologies, integrated devices and communications. She also has a penchant for blogging and is an editor of Business Fundas.