Two Customer-Focused Business Systems You Need

As mar­ket­ing becomes more data-inten­sive and auto­mat­ed, you’ll want to invest in Busi­ness Sys­tems that will enable you to bet­ter prospect, con­vert and ser­vice your cus­tomers. You’ll want to start with these two sys­tems.

The first one is a Cus­tomer Rela­tion­ship Man­age­ment (CRM) sys­tem in which you man­age the inter­ac­tions with your cus­tomers and prospects.

These inter­ac­tions will span your entire com­pa­ny includ­ing pre-sales activ­i­ties, sales and mar­ket­ing cam­paign efforts, ser­vice and tech­ni­cal sup­port. So, mem­bers of the sales, mar­ket­ing, sup­port and devel­op­ment groups typ­i­cal­ly work in the CRM sys­tem.

The goals of a CRM sys­tem are to be able to fore­cast and max­i­mize sales, be more effec­tive in sales & ser­vice by access­ing all of the touch points of the cus­tomer, reduce costs of sales/service and pro­tect your pre­cious cus­tomer data by hav­ing it be housed in a com­mon data­base.

There are many brands of CRM sys­tems- many of which are host­ed “in the cloud” (man­aged off-site by the provider which reduces costs and sim­pli­fies imple­men­ta­tion). Some com­mon CRM sys­tems for small to mid-sized com­pa­nies are:

  •  Salesforce.com
  •  Sug­ar CRM
  •  Microsoft

The CRM sys­tem is a “no brain­er,” and I bet most of you already have your CRM cov­ered.

The sec­ond busi­ness sys­tem you’ll want to con­sid­er is a Mar­ket­ing Automa­tion sys­tem.

Mar­ket­ing Automa­tion helps mar­keters bet­ter tar­get and exe­cute one-to-one mes­sag­ing with prospects as part of their demand gen­er­a­tion efforts. This ulti­mate­ly helps a busi­ness add new cus­tomers and boost sales.

Mar­ket­ing Automa­tion typ­i­cal­ly includes scor­ing prospects based on their behav­ior with the com­pa­ny, trig­ger­ing cam­paigns based on these scores or oth­er cri­te­ria, and per­son­al­iz­ing land­ing pages with rel­e­vant con­tent for each prospect. For exam­ple, an auto­mat­ed series of emails with spe­cif­ic con­tent would be trig­gered when a prospect down­loads a whitepa­per or watch­es a video.

The ben­e­fit of a strong Mar­ket­ing Automa­tion pro­gram is that the most qual­i­fied and hot leads are advanced in the sales process.

Major Mar­ket­ing Automa­tion sys­tems include:

  •  Sil­ver­pop
  •  Mar­ke­to
  •  Hub­spot
  •  Par­dot

Do we need both sys­tems?

Con­sid­er this: CRM con­sol­i­dates a huge amount of infor­ma­tion about cus­tomers; how­ev­er, it pro­vides lit­tle frame­work for mov­ing ahead the ear­ly-stage prospects, and it def­i­nite­ly is not a mes­sag­ing plat­form.  Mar­ket­ing Automa­tion lever­ages CRM and address­es these holes, and then presents new capa­bil­i­ties for B2B mar­keters to take their demand gen­er­a­tion to the next lev­el.

In sum, the ben­e­fit of hav­ing a fine tuned and inte­grat­ed CRM and Mar­ket­ing Automa­tion sys­tems is that the Sales and Mar­ket­ing teams have full views of prospects suc­cess­ful­ly mov­ing through the sales fun­nel and then con­vert­ing to be cus­tomers. You should aim to have both.

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