Dawn of New CRM strategy in the Digital age


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As the technology continues to evolve it’s important to stay ahead of the curve with strategies that are customer-focused and utilize digital techniques to keep customers engaged and satisfied.
No business enterprise in the world can succeed without one crucial thing on its side – Customer Relationship Management (CRM). Organizations have seen tangible business benefits using a CRM strategy that is digitally empowered and focuses on customer engagement best practices.

– Digital transformation and a focus on customer experience can generate a 20-30% increase in customer satisfaction and economic gains of 20-50%- McKinsey

– Companies with the strongest omnichannel experiences retain 89% of their customers on average- Digital commerce

– Gartner estimates that a billion service tickets will be raised automatically by customer-owned bots by 2030.

– 78% of consumers use mobile devices to connect with brands for customer service. The number jumps to 90% of Millennials

-65% of consumers research a product online before going to a physical store- Retail Dive

So this morning, I stopped at Starbucks on my way to sip some fresh coffee. I peeped inside where my Espresso was ready and waiting. All this, with few clicks. I ordered it through the mobile app before leaving my house. When I show up a few minutes later they were ready with my perfect coffee. No need to wait in a long line, simply rush past the line. This is what the digital age allows: Convenience. It’s not only about coffee but almost all areas of my life are changed by technology. Every brand today have an online presence to ensure they provide omnichannel customer service.

Appealing to people’s diverse and evolving needs is possible using technology. However, is technology alone enough? Not at all, customer centricity is crucial while designing your CRM strategy along with customer satisfaction, & experience. But how does one get this right? What are the current trends in CRM?

Business Intelligence:
Blending BI tools with a CRM system can help you understand, analyze, and cater to customers’ wants and needs. Trusting your gut intuition is no longer going to work, the business decisions need to be backed up by real data. Using AI-powered data analytics, data visualization, charting features and much more, one can make better business decisions, improve relationships with customers, predict and impact business performance. This way business can assess what contributes to the customer’s highest satisfaction. Fascinating, isn’t it?

Social Media:
Social networking sites are also being mined increasingly to garner the benefits of CRM. What is trending? What my friends are purchasing? Social media stands out to be a rich source of information. Tools like social media monitoring and sentiment analysis can help to provide the right customer support. Moreover, social media is a powerful tool to facilitate customer communications, marketing, or new product/service ideas. This makes social media presence a key ingredient to include in your CRM strategy to engage customers for sales, service, and marketing.

Mobile World:
Another hot trend in the CRM industry is the growing interest in “Applications”. Be it a mobile app or web app, this trend is fast gaining ground as the need for easy access and convenience is fundamental in today’s dynamic world. Apps can help to provide the customer experience that people crave for. Whether your customer wants to book a service on the phone or online, on their desktops or mobile, via phone call or text, you should be there whenever they need you. They help you to track your sales pipeline, help customers in establishing an emotional connection with your brand. Using Virtual Live Assistant and co-browsing support can further improve your customer effort score.

Nothing can make a customer happy and satisfied other than a faster response. Automation helps to optimize sales processes and shorten the sales cycle to increase sales productivity. It makes it possible to manage all qualified leads, contacts, and opportunities throughout the sales cycle. By automating your marketing, sales and service function your can level up your CRM. Under marketing automation, one can automate email campaigns, welcome emails, lead generation, data syncing, etc. In Salesforce automation, pipeline transitions, task & lead assignments, and call scheduling can be automated. Whereas under service automation, self-service, chatbots, password resets, case routing, etc can be done.

Omnichannel Presence:
With the evolution of technology, communication channels have grown exponentially, giving more ways to communicate with your customers and serve them efficiently. Identifying the most preferred channels for customer touchpoints and extending support on these touchpoints is imperative. But how do you identify the right channels, well this depends on your business, location, the product/service you offer, and such other factors. The key is consistency in service between multiple channels, one can integrate text, instant messaging, & social to deliver a unified brand experience. Customer service helpdesk and call centers are other channels to handle customer interactions in all forms.

In this highly competitive business ecosystem, success rests on the firm’s ability to attract, satisfy and retain its customers. Adapting the ever-changing technology and keeping customers at the center of whatever you do can cultivate a loyal customer base. In the crowded market, competition is fierce and consumer’s loyalty can only be commanded by providing a better portfolio of services. Also, the sale is not the end but the beginning of the relationship with your customer so how about partnering with your customer?

In the digital age, delivering a valuable experience and winning at every customer interaction dictates success. Technology can help every department to work in a coordinated fashion. Increasing real-time capabilities and reacting quickly can act as a game-changer.

Aashesh D Shaah
Aashesh Shaah is the CEO & Co-founder of Fusion Informatics Limited, a digital transformation company that transforms businesses through digital applications empowered with technologies such as AI, ML, IoT, Cloud, and more. He is a business leader with 20-plus years of experience and works with Startups, SMBs, and Enterprises to craft, enable and accelerate their digital journey.