3 Major Achievements From CRM Initiatives: Why Should Consider Starting Now.
I know that CRM or CRM Initiatives is a buzzword. Almost every organisation wants people to know them as being customer centred. In this article, I want to look at three main focuses of any CRM initiative. Follow me as we are going to look at that exclusively in this article.
The sweet fruit of customer relationship management is ample and ripe. Organisations view customer relationship management as the opportunity to achieve the following :
- Hold on to the existing market share.
- G ab more market share.
- Exploit existing market share more fully.
If you look at it critically, you will see that they are right. The key to being able to do all of these things and more is understanding the customer.
Once you understand who your customers are, what their habits are, and what they represent, you are positioned to do a thousand positive things.
In a word, the world of CRM is attractive – compellingly competitive. Corporations simply can’t wait to start exploiting the newfound knowledge of the customer.
In the rush to reap the rewards of CRM, businesses often forget that supporting CRM requires an infrastructure.
Without the infrastructure, CRM just doesn’t play. Yet the infrastructure needed to support CRM receives scant attention because it is, well, not as glamorous as CRM.
Building the infrastructure requires work, investment, and understanding of architecture, dealing with complexity and time.
Whatever the difficulties in the building of the infrastructure, it is nevertheless absolute essential for successful CRM.
The elements of this CRM infrastructure are:
- Quality, detailed data.
Without integration, one customer looks pretty much the same way as another customer.
But once data is integrated, the business analyst can start to distinguish customers from each other and, in doing so, the business analyst is able to start to personalise the relationship with the customer.
Please note that integration adds colour to a black-and-white picture.
History is vital because it is with history that the future can be predicted. History is a great predictor because customers are people, and people are creatures of habit.
The habit we form early in our adulthood sticks with us throughout our lives. Knowing what habits an individual has today enables us to predict what patterns of consumption and other activities the customer will engage in tomorrow.
When it comes to customers, the secret to predicting the future is carefully understanding the past.
Another important aspect of the infrastructure is quality, detailed data. Detailed data is important because once an organisation has a handle on its detail, it can reshape the data into any pattern desired. And to look at the customer in many different ways, flexible data is crucial.
These three elements- integration, history and detailed data – are not automatically aligned upon entering the organisation.
Some data come in one way, whereas other data come in other ways. Some data is time-constrained and other data comes in other ways.
Some data are structured and other data are unstructured. Some data are current while some are time-sensitive. Some data are o good quality whereas some data are questionable.
To align this data, the infrastructure needs its own architecture. This architecture is called the Corporate Information Factory.
The Corporate Information Factory is the ideal structure for the needs of the business that is serious about CRM. The CIF enables multiple touchpoints where the information needed does the best.
If your organisation is one of the growing numbers is organisations making their transaction from a product orientation to a customer focus, there is probably disagreement, or at the very least confusion, about how to get there. It’s not uncommon to find confessions and questions about the meaning of customer relationship management, its value to organisations, and the technologies needed to support it.
However, there is one issue upon which most business and technology executives agree. Accomplishing the transition to CRM requires a fundamental shift in business strategies and in organisational thought processes.
It also requires a comprehensive infrastructure of integrated customer information technology to support these changes.
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