How a CRM helps with customer retention

The biggest challenge of any company is retaining their customer base. Especially in the time of major shifts in the economy when people tend to cut back on their spending, how do you keep people’s business?

Take this study conducted by four researchers from The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) in their academic article titled “The impact of COVID-19 on small business outcomes and expectations.”

Published in July 2020, they found that from a 7, 511 respondents “41.3% of businesses reported that they were temporarily closed because of COVID-19. A far smaller number — 1.8% — reported that they were permanently closed because of the pandemic.”

Moving forward, with the constant threat of a global pandemic on every consumer’s mind how can companies prevent loss of their business?

Customer Relationship Management (CRM)

In a nutshell, a CRM system is a tool that helps a business manage all their customer interactions effectively and easily. It is, however, more than just a customer service software. It is also a management software that contains relevant customer information, orders, and sales activities.

Having your customers’ details and interaction history gives you a clearer picture of their wants, behaviors, and buying preferences. The benefits of this extend beyond prospective, continuous sales; it also helps you build the core function of the software itself: building relationships. Building, and maintaining for that matter.

But how does maintaining customer relationships affect brand loyalty?

Adobe’s chief executive officer Shantanu Narayen had this to say about this topic: “Customer retention is the new growth.”

With technology developing at a very rapid pace, customer expectations always change and people are always willing to try the newest thing. With every passing year, more companies are sprouting out of the woods with possible alternatives to the services you offer. Your competition, in other words, is out there.

The current game in business measures success less on new growth, but more so on retention. Take Netflix, for example. They have reported losing approximately 980,000 subscribers over the last quarter alone. Why so? The simple spectator on the street would tell you because Netflix lacks quality content. Others, however, would say that the competition offers better entertainment options.

In a customer service context, how does this analogy apply? Let’s say you’re Netflix, having a CRM platform allows you to better communicate with your current subscribers. When these customers reach out for any customer service related request, you can then use this platform as an avenue to market and get to know your clients’ preferences. You can then use this input to produce better and more marketable shows that your current customers would like to watch.

Keeping customers happy and producing shows like Strangers Things keeps them subscribed.

Retaining customers takes time and effort, not to mention a quality product to begin with. Keeping a steady, open, and reliable means of communication between your customers opens up sales and marketing opportunities too!

In order to grow your business, you will need to foster long-term relationships with your current client base. Keeping them happy must always be the priority! When you give them quality service that they can remark on, these customers can then refer you to their own social and professional circles, thereby growing your lead generation capabilities.

A CRM platform allows you to relate to your customers better. With the current focus on the customer journey, people are expecting personalized solutions that are also quick and efficient. Gone were the days that you can expect customers to be patient enough to wait for an answer within 2–3 business days. No!

Most CRM solutions are easy and powerful enough that they allow customer service agents to reach back out within minutes. And having all relevant customer details always within reach quickens the pace of finding resolution.

Because when a business already has a customer profile in the CRM, they are able to predict any future purchase tendencies they might have. They can run the proper marketing campaigns, and even reach out to said customer given that they already have their contact information.

In the modern contact center, a CRM platform is not just a nice-to-have, but a prerequisite. The benefits one gets from using it greatly outweighs the cost of entry.

Moreover, with a successful sales relationship comes the possibility of referrals. Be it through traditional word-of-mouth referrals or otherwise, when a customer has a great customer experience they are likely to share that to their network. This opens up more leads, and hopefully more sales.

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