Winning brands use CRM to articulate their business processes, and then as a sales & marketing platform. The difference between winning brands and rest is that the former use CRM to acquire customers and keep them forever by delivering superior customer experience while the latter use it just to keep a record of the lists and transactions.
This blog talks about how you can leverage CRM, just like the winning brands, to deliver hyper-personalized customer experience and accelerate the customer journey.
Before we dive in, here is something to keep in mind before trying to supercharge a CRM:
A CRM is as good as your customer experience journey design. CRM cannot accelerate your customer journey if the experience design is subpar.
#1 Fragment the CRM to unify the organizational silos for a seamless customer experience
Execution of a good customer journey demands the breaking down of organizational silos. Look back to your own experiences as a customer – how many times have you felt departments within the same organization are not working in conjunction? Now think of a scenario where the CRM is fragment, for example, marketing, sales, service, and commerce departments use the same CRM and yet a customized version that suits their department. The result – the information flows seamlessly, and each department can work with a complete customer context which is so essential for personalization,
#2 Feed the CRM with the information customers are leaving behind
Every time your customers interact with your brand, complete a transaction, share feedback, or even when they visit your website, they are leaving a ton of information. Funneling this information into the CRM system can help marketing team send more relevant and personalized communication. Companies enhance the understanding of customers through “progressive profiling”. For one of our clients, we are gathering real time feedback based on the content being browsed by their customers to send them targeted communication. Sales team can use this to know how far the client is in their buying cycle. This information is a gold mine for one to innovate and personalize the offers.
#3 Use AI and automation to enable self-service and improve efficiency
The digital-age customers do not want to interact with a sales representative at their first moment of truth. They want to self-serve and self-educate through chatbots, FAQs etc. before they are ready for the interaction. AI and automation technologies are increasingly handling the first touch point and the routine tasks for which humans were used in the past. CRM, with its customer context repository and the AI techniques, is automating these first conversations and then guiding the field sales teams to drive personalized conversations with a human touch. Real-time availability of such personalized information helps the field sales to accelerate the customer journey and differentiate their brand.
#4 Embed personalized experience with persona-based design
While many organizations depend on the power of CRM to personalize experiences, that’s not an optimal approach. A good personalized experience needs a solid persona-based design that goes beyond just the segmentation of your customers. The persona design must consider all the actors in the customer journey at a deeper level and then map their behaviors. With personas identified, integrate them in the CRM and create workflows -.not the other way around. The CRM platform then gives you the actionable customer intelligence from varied sources of data and helps you offer what the customers want – a hyper-personalized service. Remember, its persona first and the tool next.
#5 Leverage CRM for predictive support
Today’s customers want immediate resolution. They find it easier to shift to another brand than endlessly answering the customer support questions, and then waiting for a problem’s resolution. Leverage your CRM to rapidly respond and engage your customers since the time the incident is raised. In some scenarios, the CRM can create trends from the customer support incidents and enable the service teams to proactively reach out to customers to troubleshoot the issues pre-emptively. Customers love brands being proactive and that improves the stickiness and rapidly moves them from a satisfied user to an advocate.
The big question
Is your CRM helping you deliver personalized service and accelerate the customer journey? Most of the organizations we speak to have invested in CRM and have been using them for long. However, 70% of the time we don’t get a confident answer to this question. While the reasons are many, we have come up with a CRM Maturity Index that can answer this basic question and more.
Our CRM Maturity Index is a combination of tools, checklists and frameworks built out of our experience that assesses an organization’s CRM maturity and provides guidance to improve their customer journey. This tool, combined with our Customer Journey Index gives you the right direction and results when it comes to leveraging CRM to accelerate the customer journey.
A CRM and Customer Engagement Transformation Practitioner. Loves working with clients to transform their customer experience to make them Digital Native. Specializes in IT Consulting, Salesforce, Cloud Solutions, Digital transformation, Organization Strategy & Transformation, Design Thinking