The powerful benefits of CRM go back to the fundamentals of people skills that existed long before computers.
In Dale Carnegie’s classic book, “How to Win Friends and Influence People” — published in 1936, with 15 million copies sold since — he lists “good listening skills” and “encouraging others to talk about themselves” as some of the most prized, effective habits when dealing with people.
Carnegie unknowingly defined CRM perfectly: it encourages your customers and your potential customers to talk about themselves and give you information that builds a vivid customer profile.
When used with skill and combined with powerful phone integration, CRM translates into remarkable customer service that maintains a personal touch — even when your company is getting larger and experiencing growing pains.
In this B2C article, marketing master Jen Phillips April zeroes in on the power of CRM:
If you have 50 clients, you probably don’t speak to them as often and that some of that personal touch is lost. And what about those potential customers? The ones you meet today who aren’t ready for your products or services? A CRM can help you stay in touch with them through regular “touches” so when they’re ready to buy, you’re there.
The following three points add some deeper layers of meaning to what personal touch means in effective Customer Relationship Management.
1. CRM, When Used Diligently, Creates Consistency
Well-maintained CRM — especially ones like Tenfold that auto-log your calls (which gives you more time to enter quality notes) — gives something that every customer wants: consistency.
When your customer service is consistent — when, no matter who your client or prospective client speaks with in your company, your employees know who the customer is and what they want — it creates a powerful experience.
One marketing professional on Entrepreneur used her CRM to look up the name of a prospect in a customer’s booth in an exhibit hall at a conference: “This way I can approach the booth and ask if my point of contact is there. If they are wonderful we can say ‘hi’ in person. If they aren’t there, at least the person I’m talking with will know that it’s not the conference version of a cold call.”
2. Cross-Channel Awareness — Social Media, Email, and Phone Calls
It’s not just about consistency on the phone or in-person. Consistency across digital interactions — social media and email — is essential. If your company interacts warmly with a customer on the phone, and then treats them like a total stranger on Twitter when they engage with you, that damages any impression of a personal touch that you’ve created.
CRM.com wrote this about the importance of cross-channel awareness: “Customers talk across multiple channels and expect a seamless transition when doing so. Streamlining your cross-channel capabilities is necessary to achieving best-in-class customer service.”
A powerful CRM can, for example, automatically pull in emails related to a customer in both inbound and outbound customer calls, and it allows quick click-to-dial on any website or social platform. This frees you up to monitor social media engagement while handling a phone call. (And, yes, Tenfold has all of these features.)
3. Well Organized Means More Attentive Service
It’s a truth we see over and over again. When you’re better organized, you’re more attentive. Your concentration is sharper. Even science backs this up. As noted by Unclutterer.com, Princeton University published a study that correlates better organization to better concentration.
When your CRM integrates everything — especially those priceless phone interactions — and automatically organizes it for you, you’re free to pay attention to what really matters: your customers.
Business News Daily sums it up:
At its core, CRM software is all about keeping information from different sources organized, such that they are easily accessible whenever you need them. For growing small businesses, traditional email, mobile and other address books likely won’t be enough — and those methods aren’t sustainable solutions for the long term.
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