May 11, 2017

Have a Small Business? Here’s Why You Need CRM

BY Caitlin Delohery IN CRM Software, Small Business 0 Comment

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Right now, you may be thinking, “CRM is only for big businesses, not the little ones like me!” But CRM doesn’t need to be overcomplicated. In fact, the best CRMs for small businesses are easy to use and customizable to your needs, not clunky software that takes days to set up.

So why do you need CRM? For starters, CRM helps you foster strong relationships with new and existing customers. When you focus on people, not just profits, your business grows organically. At the end of the day, relationships make or break your business — and you know that there’s nothing more valuable than a referral.

man throwing money on unicorn gif

But maintaining customer relationships, your team, and a steady income can feel overwhelming. That’s why CRM is the best tool to streamline your efforts and cultivate the relationships that will feed your business for years to come.

It prioritizes your to-do list.

With a mile long to-do list, do you know the most important thing to work on every day? Should you focus on following up with three new connections — something you meant to do last week? Or maybe you should send a marketing email to your beta list? Or maybe you need to schedule some sales calls…

"Hang on, I'm doing something really important!" -- guy hoola hooping on his bed gif

While CRM might not cut your list in half, it helps you prioritize your tasks so that you spend time in the most meaningful way every single day.

But keep in mind, CRM is like any business tool: it doesn’t automatically grow sales. Just like fertilizing tomatoes, if your garden’s full of rocks or sits in the shade, no fertilizer will encourage the plants to grow. To really nail CRM, it takes the right strategy.  

No more sticky notes: it organizes customer data for you.

Strategy breeds success, so think about how you organize and use customer info today. Even if you know your customer’s role and company, do you know their kid’s name? What about their side business importing coffee? Or their favorite topics to tweet about?

It’s hard to remember all the details, so why not let CRM do it for you? It can aggregate online info from LinkedIn profiles and Twitter feeds — plus you can add the relationship history all in one place that you can access from anywhere.

Staying on top of what your customers are up to isn’t weird and doesn’t need to be time-consuming. Instead, it helps you meaningfully connect with them so when it’s time to close the sale, they’re ready to say yes.

Your sales team will never send a duplicate email to the same lead again.

If your team uses a regular email platform rather than a CRM, two salespeople might send two emails to the same lead. Awkward, right?

News reporter attempts to high five her colleague and it's not reciprocated.

A lead is likely as busy as you, so when they receive two emails from your sales team, it makes your company look disorganized.

Mistakes like this occur when a team doesn’t have the same level of customer data and communication transparency that a CRM provides. It’s exactly what you don’t want to happen.

How — and when — you connect with a lead is very different from how you connect with a veteran customer. For example, with CRM, your new sales team member will know that David became a customer in 2011 after he was referred by his dad, Robert. They also know that Kathy is a lead and appropriately send her a follow-up email to schedule a call.

To effectively communicate with customers, your entire team needs to understand the history with the client to make deeper connections — and close the sale.

It helps you master customer experience.

Each of the three points above help you do the most important thing: build customer relationships. Your customers are the bread and butter of your business and taking care of them is your top priority. The best CRM for your small business frees up your time so you can do just that.

With more time to focus on customer relationships, you improve their experience, close more sales, and grow your business. Boom.

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Brand new to CRM? Check out our article on everything you need to know.

Caitlin got her roots in inbound marketing before it got its name. As a teenager in the 90s, she promoted her independently published magazines by writing about the importance of indie publishing all over AOL. Now, Caitlin is passionate about moving people and society forward. She follows thought leaders in the National Speakers Association, the staffing industry, and all human rights movements. She loves learning and helping people learn. That’s why she writes content – to help people learn to work smarter.

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