Ask any salesperson about their life before having a CRM setup, and you’ll hear about how they never realized how inefficient they were before. Why? Because having a CRM software properly set up changes every aspect of ‘what’s possible’ in a sales team - and the benefits ripple out company-wide, improving customer service and satisfaction across the board.
A CRM (customer relationship management) system is software that captures and organizes customer information to support the company in understanding their customers on a deeper level. Ultimately, it can help employees service those customers more effectively by providing tools that optimize operational tasks and aggregate important information based on a variety of data points.
The biggest payoff is seeing how a powerful tool, like HubSpot or Salesforce, helps companies better nurture their sales and marketing leads and customers throughout their entire lifecycle, while eliminating a lot of inefficiencies.
With a CRM you lose none of the high-touch value in your customer experience, but instead, customer-focused roles (like the sales team) are able to shift their focus from manually running reports and repeatedly segmenting customers for key campaign outreaches - to instead optimizing and automating workflows, so they can spend more time servicing the right clients with a personal touch.
It almost sounds too good to be true. So why doesn’t every company see the benefits from a CRM right away?
The challenge is that CRMs aren’t a quick-fix, organizing all of your customer details and boosting sales in one day. Businesses continue to underestimate the crucial lead-time, manpower, training and best practices it takes to get the system working effectively for the company. While a CRM has the potential to be powerful, it’s the data it gathers and how it’s used, that is the secret to success.
Time and again, when companies cut corners by trying to take the express route and ignore the the crucial step of properly setting up their CRM for their unique needs, they risk not having their CRM do everything it’s capable of doing for their business. To help you get the most from your CRM, here are the top 5 most common mistakes to avoid in setting up a new CRM.
Not having clearly defined processes in place:
While the functionality of a CRM like Salesforce is virtually limitless, in reality many companies end up using the tool like a glorified address book. When instead, companies should be mapping out their customer lifecycle and identifying key processes where a CRM can impact the experience, and help you nurture and support your customers more effectively. Speak with a CRM expert up front about how to best use the tool to solve your unique challenges so you don’t fall into the trap of just using your CRM for the bare minimum of what it’s capable of doing.
Skimping out on employee training:
Your CRM is designed to be a tool that organizes valuable information for everyone within the company - which means you’ll have many users inputting information. It’s crucial to train staff properly and consistently with how to navigate the software, but also establish and share best practices about how it will specifically be used in alignment with your company’s unique processes and objectives. Make sure when you first get set up with a new CRM you have a planned training day for everyone who will be using the tool. On top of that, having a user guide for everyone to reference and a dedicated CRM power user who can help with common issues that come up will help make sure everyone knows how to properly use the tool.
Setting it and forgetting it:
Let’s say you identified clearly defined processes for your CRM and scheduled comprehensive training for your team - awesome - but that’s where many companies fall-off. Setting up the infrastructure is an investment, but integrating your new system into your daily operations is equally as involved and equally as important. If you set up the system and then forget to make it a central piece of your daily business, you’re missing out on 80 percent of the value. Encourage everyone who should be using the new system to actually use it and use it regularly for the true benefits of it to be seen.
Not being clear on your goals and the corresponding metrics:
Businesses thrive on clearly defined goals. What good is all of your data if you aren’t capturing it and attaching it to objectives that can tangibly impact the business? Define the metrics that will help move your business forward and set up your CRM to measure these metrics right from the start.
Ignoring the social media integration:
Trying to understand your customers without factoring in their activity on social media is missing out on a big opportunity to continuously stay up to date on what your clients and leads are saying. Not only is social listening incredibly important for brands, but teams need to up the ante and actively engage in conversation with customers across social platforms as well.
Here’s the bottom line: if you’re a company that wants to get the most from your CRM, you need to make sure it’s set up properly from day one. Outsourcing set up to a Salesforce partner, like SOL Business Solutions is a great way to do this. Not only do we understand all of the ins and outs of the software, but we make the process feel seamless by bridging the gap between your business needs and the Salesforce learning curve.
To learn more about how we can manage setup and optimization of Salesforce to get you on the way to your goals faster, email us to set up a discovery call.