A small business faces a number of challenges and the ongoing pandemic situation with the lock down, decreased spending power and shutting down of entire markets would not be helping anyone. Yet, there is still some hope since more and more business owners are taking the conscious decision to move online. With the advent and evolution of a number of tools in the past two decades, we are equipped to take our small businesses online and find the right customers to generate a handsome revenue, month after month. But, this has also created a lot of competition since everyone pretty much has the same idea. So how would a small business be able to survive? The answer lies in the right CRM strategy for your small business.
What exactly is a CRM strategy? Before we go into the details and the steps for creating a CRM strategy, we would need to understand what a CRM software is and how the right CRM software can transform your business and the scalability that it attains. Here are a few points to help you understand the same in a succinct and precise manner:
. Data Handling: One of the core tasks of CRM or customer relationship management is to collect the right data for the right leads, prospects and customers. Why? Because when you use this data to look for leads, you will more often than not find the right leads who can be converted easily and successfully for your business. Also, when you have the right data pertaining to these leads, you can build relationships based on relatable deliverables and engagement. Whether it is posts or one on one conversations, you can be sure that the right data in the right place would catapult you straight into the customer’s attention. The CRM software would help you do so since the framework is built on the basis of what the customer would expect and how your product or service can be positioned.
- Functions: The data that would be captured and stored in the relevant fields as shown above would then be matched with the right functions so that you and your team can get automated notifications for the various tasks that have to be completed to nudge the leads towards the sales pipeline. This is where automation takes over so that the various team members involved can do their tasks with all the information in the right places, in order to get a conversion once the customer has been taken through the sales pipeline as set by the right CRM software.
- Collaboration: This would have to be one of the core functions of the right CRM software. When you are able to match functions with information, you would come up with a list of deliverables to be rendered by the people with the correct skill sets in your team. This would lead to seamless collaboration with minimum possible room for chaos, confusion, overlapping of tasks or even lapses in doing certain tasks. In this way, you would have the least amount of confusing communication and maximum output for yourself and the team. Further, many businesses including financial services, real estate and many others, also depend on collaboration with outside or third parties and other vendors. In order to create a seamless process of delivery of products and services, the CRM software helps in making the right collaborations and integrations so that you can conduct your sales and after sales services with ease.
- Scalability and Growth: The analysis and reporting part of the right CRM software will always help a small business in their growth and scalability journey. This is due to the fact that it is important to look back on the efforts of a month or a quarter to understand what could have been done in a better manner and for a better output so that the CRM framework can be adjusted and the resources may be allocated accordingly for a better output. This will also fuel your journey towards scalability in a much faster manner. Also, with the use of a CRM software, you will be able to put up a far more professional front and come across as a well functioning enterprise. This would fuel more trust in your brand and growth in the number of customers who would readily sign up.
Now that we have discussed some of the benefits of using a CRM software, let us move on and understand the 6 steps with which we can craft the right CRM strategy for your small business:
Step 1: Goal Identification: This would be one of the first steps before you go ahead and bring in a CRM software with the CRM strategy. Are you looking to create brand awareness or bring in more customers? Are you looking to cross sell and up sell to existing customers? These goals would have to be clearly defined for the right CRM software to do its work.
Step 2: Challenges and Setbacks: Once you know your goals, it would be important to do an audit of exactly what might be holding you back in terms of the challenges and setbacks so that you can fix the same and create the right CRM framework for your CRM strategy.
Step 3: Customer Mapping: Whether it is the way the customer thinks and what he or she wants, or how the purchase journey would ideally look, you would have to map it all out for the right CRM strategy to fall into place.
Step 4: Understand the Channels: Know where you should look for your leads and what kind of funnel they would have to pass through so that they can turn into prospects and customers.
Step 5: Communication Channels must be set for maximum integration of efforts in the CRM software.
Step 6: Workflow: From the actual data mining to the on boarding process, you would have to define every step and KPI.