In four words, here’s one of the most important lessons I’ve learned from years of sales experience. It’s all about me.
But before you take offense at or revel in this seemingly selfish declaration, let me clarify. How a customer feels about me (my company) and what I’m (we’re) willing to do for them sets the stage for success or failure. Businesses live or die by customer relations which, of course, in the end makes it all about them.
Granted, you won’t get very far with an undesirable product or service. But even the best offering will fall short if your customers don’t believe you truly understand or care about their needs. That’s why I’m so passionate about customer relationship management.
As the leader of the sales division for ConnectWise, I see firsthand how the power of our CRM tool can enrich the customer experience and drive sales growth. Let me share the top five reasons you need a CRM.
1. One Source of Truth
It’s essential that your business have one go-to source for accurate, detailed customer contact and preference data. Otherwise, among other potential problems, you’re setting yourself up for relationship-damaging scenarios.
Example: Let’s say a morning shift employee at Company X takes a call from a referral customer who needs immediate response to a service issue. Being new, their info isn’t in the system, so the issue is entered against an existing contact. The next day, another employee tries to pick up where the issue left off and valuable time is lost looking for the misplaced contact info. The new client is annoyed with what appears to be slow response time and inefficiency. These hiccups could have been avoided with an easy-to-update CRM database accessed immediately for contact verification during the initial customer call-in.
2. Team Support
You want your business teams all working toward the same goal of customer satisfaction and greater profitability, right? Well, a CRM can be valuable toward that end. It offers an easy and consistent way for every department to both contribute to and benefit from the same tool.
Example: Company X realized some departments—particularly accounting and marketing—were often missing access to key client information that would make their roles more effective. They solved this by implementing a new system into their CRM of adding ‘???’ into fields where info was missing. Any time that any employee was interacting with a customer, they made a point of attempting to fill in those ‘???’ areas—a step that benefited the entire team by ensuring a more complete historical record and solid relationship with their clients.
3. Stronger Relationships
Who doesn’t want to feel special? When you use your CRM to collect client preferences and histories, you’re ready to connect with them on a more personal level.
Example: Forward-thinking Company X uses their CRM to flag a call from a client’s CEO as VIP from the moment it rings into the receptionist. Imagine the potential benefits of that smart move.
4. Ability to Predict the Future
CRM historical data provides valuable insight into future client behavior, so you can anticipate needs.
Example: Over a few years, Company X stored relative data about their customers’ assets, as well as purchase and service histories. Then they sorted the data into groups they targeted with specific marketing campaigns. The high return on that marketing investment was no surprise. The same data also allowed them to be proactive about hardware renewals and expiring warranties.
5. Clients Only Start Once
It’s the truth. You get one chance to make a first impression.
Example: After being in business several years, Company X decided to dedicate CRM resources toward a customer friendly onboarding process that included introductions, education, expectation setting and a full needs analysis. They found out clients who hadn’t experienced this onboarding had a tough time being introduced to the system later. Lesson learned?
There you have it—what experience has taught me about why you must have a CRM. There are many levels of details I didn’t dive into here, but the key message is simple. If your business is still buried under a stack of spreadsheets or you’re held back by the inefficiency of multiple information systems, a CRM will strengthen your service, satisfy your customers, and grow your company.
CRM and Beyond– With ConnectWise
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Adam Slutskin, VP Worldwide Sales
Adam’s uncanny ability for uncovering hidden talent, and his dedication to putting the customer first has enabled him to lead his team to record sales month after month.
Adam joined ConnectWise in 2010 as a Director of Sales. Now as the Senior Vice President of Worldwide Sales, Adam leads a global sales team of 100+ colleagues on the ConnectWise Business Development, Channel, Sales Operations, Account Management and Sales teams. Adam’s efforts over the years have resulted in record customer attainment and revenue growth. Under his leadership, the sales team’s mantra is ‘customer first.’
With more than 15 years of successful technology sales experience, Adam served as Senior Director of Business Development at Kaseya, where he built the North America Business Development team. His work culminated in the most successful year in Kaseya’s history. Adam began his career at Broadwing, where he sold voice and data services and was consistently recognized as a top performer. He was also named to the President’s Club as both a representative and manager at Computer Associates while selling security, backup, and infrastructure solutions to enterprise and mid-market organizations.
Adam has a distinguished military background and served in the United States Air Force for more than 20 years. As a C-5 aircrew member in both active and reserve, Adam has been awarded the Air Medal, Aerial Achievement Medal, and the Global War on Terrorism Medal.
A diehard Yankees fan, Adam grew up in New York, has been married for 20 years, and has three sons.