As an keen enthusiast and evangelist of Software as a Service (SaaS) based digital Customer Relationship Management (CRM) technologies, please feel free to read my published articles regarding SaaS and Salesforce CRM:
Priorities: we all have these and it’s sometimes difficult to decide which should be dealt with first. For years, the world famous think tanks and theorists have used guidelines to measure daily activities to determine overall priorities.
Continued Professional Development, On-Going Knowledge IP transfer and leanings, no matter what our age is a great way to keep our minds healthy and active.
Finding and identifying new ways of working to become more productive is a great way to develop your skills especially when combined with tools such as CRM technology.
A key principle to use when priortising is the Pareto Principle, also known as the 80-20 rule. This clearly states 20 percent of your activities do account for 80 percent of your results.For example, if you have 10 action items, only 2 of those actions will be worth 5 or 10 times more than the other 8 activities put together!
“There’s never enough time to do everything, but there’s always enough time to do the most important thing.”
As a keen enthusiast of #CRM cloud based technology, I strongly advise that you undertake your management of identifying all and executing priorities by utilising Activites and Tasks within your #CRM systems that enable you to monitor the progress, status and outcomes of all required actions to build both good internal and external stakeholder relationships.
This is a key part of the end user education process and user adoption process for any implemented #CRM cloud based technology.
#CRM cloud based technology such as Salesforce and INFOR allow users to integrate all email communications, tasks and activities with a click of a button by way of an API that can be installed and configured by the end user themselves.
Creating a Task in #Salesforce #CRM
Another way to is to use tools such as Google Tasks (Gtasks), all you need is a Google Gmail account and simply use the Gtask App to allow you view you calendar of events and tasks you have detailed in one simple interface.
Effective Calendaring and using Google Calendar and tasks
The following guidelines will help you Prioritize Your Priorities…
Create a list / statement, write down your main goal(s). Always use this as your overall focus in assisting you to create your list of priorities that will help you achieve your goal.
Create your “Very Important” task list; can be done in a number of ways: (written and then electronically) a: Make your to-do list for your day i.e. all actions Include that must be done that day, together with additional items that can be completed over a period of time. And/or b: Create a list for all actions you need to complete in order to be successful. Examples could include follow-up stakeholder management business activities of all types, research and engaging with colleagues etc.
Rank your action items in order of proffered priority based on the initial objective goal you set in step 1. Occasionally, some actions are similar and these can be grouped to assist in helping you If various items are similar, you can categorize them to help Prioritize Your Priorities.
Now the best part! Pareto’s rule … Simply highlight the top 20 percent of your priorities and make a memorable list of 5 things that allows you to allocate the majority of your time to those things.
Finally, print your memorable list based on you achieving your top 20% and ensure it’s displayed where you can regularly reference this. Remember, technique and repetition is very important…
After undertaking the above guidelines, confidently ensure you utilize the technique daily, during weekends and also when you find yourself too busy!…
The secret being … that all your activities in the top 20% with your memorable list must be completed every day. Also be feasible, realistic, achievable and simple enough to be completed in 24hrs.
Thinking of getting a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) System for your organisation? Go Cloud based with Salesforce..
After attending conferences and business networking events during the past few months it is clearly evident that many key business decision makers have no idea of the concept of CRM. Also, that prior to selecting any CRM system, I feel everyone needs to know what CRM actually stands for, together with the benefits CRM can bring to any organisation big or small!
So what does CRM actually mean? What is it?
Customer relationship management (CRM) relates to the strategies, practices and technologies that a company uses to manage, record and evaluate customer engagements to drive sales growth whilst building relationships with their customers and stakeholders.
Additionally, Customer relationship management (CRM) refers to strategies, practices and technologies that a company uses to analyze and review customer engagements, interactions and data during the customer sales and service lifecycle.
The ultimate outcome being to improve relationships with clients, all internal and external stakeholders that in turn helps to assist with long term client retention and driving sales growth.
How this is achieved is for CRM system to data capture and compile information about all clients and stakeholders across a number of different channels and contact points between client/stakeholder and company. For example, Business Information, Website, log of all contact activity i.e. phone, email, chatter, social media etc. For the service industry and customer-facing staff, CRM systems can provide a view of all clients in terms of their personal information, purchase history to date and potential buying preferences! No to forget their issues and concerns logged as cases with the company!
Given the above, quite simply, CRM software consolidates all your customer information together with supporting documents into a single CRM database, providing a ‘Single View of the Customer’ at any one point in time. This enables every business user to be able to easily access and manage it especially when you select a Cloud Based CRM system like Salesforce.
Additional key functions of CRM software also include recording a range of customer interactions be they email, social media, phone and other channels. Also, offering the capabilities of automating various workflow business processes e.g. Emails, Approvals, Tasks, Notifications etc.
Common Features of CRM Software Include:
Marketing automation: CRM tools with marketing automation capabilities can automate repetitive tasks to enhance marketing efforts to customers at different points in the lifecycle. For example, as leads come into the system, the system may automatically assign them to a particular salesperson and or send an email alert to the sales director with the goal of turning a sales lead into a full-fledged qualified opportunity and account as per the Salesforce CRM model.
Sales force automation: Also known as sales force management, sales force automation is meant to prevent duplicate efforts between a salesperson and a customer. A CRM system can help achieve this by automatically tracking all contact and follow-ups between both sides.
Geo-location technology, or location-based services: Some CRM systems have the technology that can create geographic marketing campaigns based on customers’ physical locations, sometimes integrating with popular location-based GPS apps. Geolocation technology can also be used as a networking or contact management tool in order to find sales prospects based on location.
The CRM Technology Market
Congratulations! You now all know the exact meaning of CRM. So I assume you’re asking yourselves which CRM system do I select for my business to succeed?
At present, the four main vendors of CRM systems that are able to provide excellent service and enhanced capabilities as follows: Salesforce.com, Microsoft, SAP and Oracle.
As an individual who is familiar with CRM and has worked with many CRM systems across the globe over a number of years, I can honestly say that both SAP and Oracle are not that intuitive, very un-user friendly, non customer centric and extremely technical in their nature. Microsoft Dynamics CRM was a slow entry and contender to the CRM world.
Whereas Salesforce, clearly have pioneered CRM worldwide in terms of their Cloud Based Offerings. I would strongly recommend Salesforce to any organization as a CRM system.
An annual analysis was undertaken in 2014 of how the best companies use Salesforce. With over 450 Salesforce customers surveyed, it produced the following. Here are some amazing facts and statistics regarding Salesforce and their monumental success to date, reasons why you should invest in them:
Forbes Magazine voted Salesforce in 2014 as the number 1 World’s Most Innovative Company
In 2012, to support new products and new clients, Salesforce hired an additional 2,500 employees alone, a staggering increase of 47%.
Forbes Magazine reported that Salesforce’s revenue stream was up to an estimated $3 billion in 2013 from $1 billion three years ago in 2010!
The Salesforce.com Foundation donates 1% of the company’s resources (defined as profit, equity, and employee time) to support organizations that are working to “make the world a better place
93% of Salesforce customers believe cloud computing is critical to accelerating innovation.
90% of Salesforce customers believe Salesforce is more valuable today than it was one year ago.
47% of Salesforce customers have a comprehensive Salesforce adoption strategy.
Salesforce user adoption and training contributes to 25% increase in Sales Pipeline
Salesforce user adoption and training contributes to 26% increase in Sales Win Rate
Salesforce user adoption and training contributes to 30% increase in Revenue
42% of Salesforce customers pay for employees to get Salesforce certified.
89% provide formal training to their admins and developers.
55% of marketers get Salesforce training
Data cleansing is the 2nd hottest app investment in the Salesforce AppExchange.
69% of Salesforce customers will increase their Salesforce budget.
84% believe customer engagement will overtake productivity as the primary driver of growth.
71% of sales customers want real-time customer information on their mobile device.
Other CRM system providers are less popular among businesses. And, they also tend to offer less capability and functionality. My advice to you all reading this? Go for a CRM system solution that you can grow with and develop over time.
A system that adapts to your business needs and processes. At the same time, providing you with multi channel / device capabilities etc.
Many people I have spoken to have said they don’t want to spend much money on CRM and yet, they always make the wrong choice based on low cost solutions. CRM is all about your business processes and how it can assist your organization in growing and developing. Ensuring all your stakeholders, be they internal / external including all customers are constantly connected 24/7 in order to build great long-term business relationships with your firm.
Salesforce Cloud Based CRM Software
As per the above, Salesforce is a cloud-based CRM system – also known as SaaS (software-as-a-service) or on-demand CRM. I’m sure most of us are now familiar with the Cloud Term.
Your Salesforce data is stored on an external, remote network that employees can access anytime; anywhere there is an Internet connection, sometimes with a third-party service provider overseeing installation and maintenance. The cloud’s quick, relatively easy deployment capabilities appeals to companies with limited technological expertise or resources.
I strongly recommend Salesforce’s cloud-based CRM as a more cost-effective option for your business. They will only charge by the user on a subscription basis and give the option of monthly or yearly payments, dependent on the level of licensing you choose.
Mobile CRM or the CRM applications built for smartphones and tablets is becoming a must-have for sales representatives and marketing professionals who want to access customer information and perform tasks when they are not physically in their offices. Once you implement Salesforce CRM, you have full access to the Salesforce1 mobile app that enables all users and stakeholders to have access to their database allowing real time updates 24/7 sync’d to your database.
Watch the Salesforce1 Video here!
Social CRM refers to businesses engaging with their customers directly through social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Social media presents an open forum for customers to share experiences with a brand, whether they’re airing grievances or promoting products. Salesforce Marketing Cloud provides a single location for all your cross-channel content, enabling your brand to speak with one voice across all your digital channels, for a consistent experience throughout the 1:1 customer journey.
Watch the Salesforce Marketing Cloud Video here!
Watch the Salesforce Sales Cloud Video here!
Watch the Salesforce Service Cloud Video here!
Ready to Implement Salesforce?
If you need any assistance and require my services to help consult, implement, test and launch your CRM systems than please contact myself to discuss services for hire further.
About the Author
Michael achieved a Bachelors degree in Business Studies majoring in Marketing combined with a year’s work experience in an IT Hardware / Software environment. He started his experience as a Marketing Communications Executive in the Utilities Sector working with above and below the line marketing techniques.
He further developed his CRM, Internet, digital marketing and technology skill sets with additional consulting and corporate marketing assignments that also incorporated the implementation roll out and use of technology with a number of major CRM systems. This enabled Michael to become Oracle Certified as part of an Oracle Siebel implementation and soon to be Salesforce Certified. To date, he has managed to develop his skill set working with a range of ERP CRM Systems as well as combining this with a love of On-Line Digital Marketing and Media.
Having now moved to a consulting role, this has enabled him to work closely with a range of clients to understand and document their business requirements. In turn, enabling him to assist them in successfully implementing new CRM and Marketing systems. Away from the office, he shares a love of snowboarding together with the great outdoors! Most recently becoming a qualified diver and has already dived in some of the most glorious locations in Asia. Read Michael’s articles on LinkedIn.