In Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, Bob Cratchit is a lowly clerk whose boss skimps on the heat just to make an extra buck. While not every employer is Ebenezer Scrooge, even that tight-fisted hand at the grindstone knew a good idea when he heard one. For those of you who want to improve the way your sales team does business, possibly with a new Customer Relationship Management (CRM) solution, take heart. In the same way that Bob Cratchit convinced his miserly employer to give him the whole of Christmas Day off (at least in the Muppet version of the tale), you too can get your (likely much less curmudgeonly) boss to see the profit in your CRM brainwave—if you play your cards right.
In the coming years, CRM solutions are poised to eclipse enterprise resource planning (ERP). Scrooge can “humbug” all he likes, but statistics don’t lie. Last summer, Gartner reported that CRM solutions are on pace to become a 36.5 billion dollar industry by 2017. For companies focused on creating long-lasting customer relationships, CRM solutions truly are the wave of the future.
Keeping up with your customers on social media is imperative. Social media customer service requests have increased by a reported 77 percent year over year. Across the board, businesses are only beginning to take note, increasing their responses to these requests by a meager 5 percent. By focusing on the customers others ignore, you’ll warm more cold hearts than the ghosts of Christmas past, present, and future put together.
Mobile sales teams are more productive than those tethered to their desks. Nearly half of those already using CRM solutions do so from their smartphone or tablet, and 82 percent of those mobile users are reporting a significant boost to both their efficiency and productivity according to CRM technology review website Software Advice. That’s music to the ears of anybody who scours their ledgers even half as often as Ebenezer Scrooge.
Knowing your customers better means knowing how to sell to them better. Even back in Dickensian London, you caught more flies with honey than vinegar. Scrooge himself learned this the hard way, after seeing the ruin visited upon his ex-partner Marley. Thankfully, with a proper CRM solution under your belt, you’ll have your customers’ every metric at your fingertips. Speaking to customers in their own language and on the platforms of their choosing isn’t just attentive, it’s what makes customers into friends. And to paraphrase the great Paul Williams: when you need to know the measure of a business, you simply count its friends.
Armed with this knowledge, and after discovering the difference a good CRM solution can make for your business, you’ll be well equipped for that big meeting with your (still way less scary than Ebenezer Scrooge) boss. Start getting to know how Microsoft Dynamics CRM can transform your own workplace today, and you’ll have your boss dancing down the street in no time. Why not watch this quick video to get yourself started?