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Customer Relationship Management (CRM): What is it and why you need it

CRM Meaning

Customer Relationship Management, or CRM, is a way for companies to manage their interactions with customers. Any method that uses data to improve interactions during each stage of the customer journey can be considered CRM.

Yet, for many, CRM is about the software that manages these relationships.

What Is CRM Software?

CRM Software is a tool or collection of tools that collect and store customer data. This software is then used to analyze and manage these details to help companies deliver better results.



What Are the CRM Benefits?

CRM software exists to collate and analyze customer data. From here, organizations can use this information to create insights into customer behavior.

The different roles in a business’s CRM define which data will be helpful at each stage of the customer journey. Additionally, each department will benefit in different ways.

Marketing Teams

By understanding their customers' needs, profiles, and demographics, marketing teams can create more accurate and effective campaigns.

Sales Teams

CRM software means sales teams have a more sophisticated understanding of their prospects. From the marketing materials that drive awareness of their product or service through to details of any previous contact, sales professionals enter each engagement armed with valuable knowledge.

Another advantage of CRM for sales teams is that it significantly reduces their administration time. This time saved can be spent on their core tasks.

On a management level, CRM helps businesses track their sales reps' performance. From here, it can provide insights into how to assist better performance.

Customer Support

For customer support, CRM software helps this team understand how each product or service was sold to each client. This data allows them to tailor their support to each client with a higher degree of accuracy. Additionally, customer support teams have an oversight of what each customer has been told and any previous issues.

Omni-channel Communication

Another of the CRM advantages is how it can manage omnichannel communication. For example, customers have various options when contacting a business, such as an email, phone, social media, messenger apps, etc.

Contact on these different mediums can quickly become siloed or missed. Using CRM as a hub for customer contact means all the information is centralized.

Supply Chain and Third-Party Vendor Management

CRM software also allows companies to have a better control and understanding of their procurement, supply chains, and partners.

From tracking meetings and requests to using data analytics to garner insights and improve operational efficiency, CRM is able to add value to any organization.


Conclusion

Software like Salesforce and Hubspot have come to define customer relationship management. But, the phrase is as much a concept as a tool. CRM systems make this service possible, but CRM is also a strategy and a process for acquiring and retaining customers.

CRM can be a philosophy that a business has about how they manage interactions with clients. Additionally, CRM can be a process that a company uses to ensure they maximize the potential of their client relationships.

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