Customer Relationship Management, or CRM for short, is the implementation of software and processes that are designed to assist companies with managing customer purchasing behaviors and trends in order to improve sales targeting and marketing strategies, among other things.
It is easy to confuse Customer Relationship Management with Customer service. Customer service deals specifically with the interaction of a company’s employees with clients, customers or the public in general. You know how important customer service is if you’ve ever had bad service, especially if that service was so bad that you never patronized the company ever again. But that is not CRM. CRM is the process of using sales statistics and analysis to improve the way that your company interfaces with your customers in order to improve business.
For instance, a grocery store that offers a savings card will store your shopping patterns in their computer whenever you shop. The benefit to you the customer is that you get more coupons that are more sharply targeted to the products that you tend to buy. The benefit to the company employing CRM techniques and or software is that you will more likely use those coupons at their store, thus increasing the company’s sales through improved targeted marketing strategies.
There are numerous companies that offer Customer Relationship Management training software. You can opt to purchase software that you integrate into your sales and marketing systems yourself, or you can hire a company that manages monthly business reporting to help better customize your CRM capabilities to match your company’s goals.
Different companies will use customer information in different ways. Think about how much more convenient it is when you call about a problem with your bill and the person on the other end of the phone is able to pull up your account information in detail. They are better able to assist you with your issue, leading to a better relationship with you the customer and allowing the employee to successfully assist their customers. Call centers have been using this capability for years to populate their phone lists to target their cold calls.
Technology is making CRM much easier to implement by utilizing mobile capabilities to get up to the minute information on your mobile devices, ensuring better, more interactive customer relationships. For businesses large and small, Customer Relationship Management is helping to enhance customer interaction.