Networking is a key way to meet new people that may benefit your company. In business, you need customers. Everyone you meet is a potential client. If not they may know someone who would potentially want your product or service, if not now, sometime in the future. If you don’t keep a record of who you met, how can you keep track of the people to follow-up up with? You need a Customer Relationship Management system.
A Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system is a catalogue of customers and potential customers for tracking and keeping in touch with. It can be a list or a spreadsheet, or a full CRM system. There are many systems. Some offer a free version for a limited number of customer records to get you started, if you are small this may be enough with no need to ever pay for a premium version. Paid versions offer greater capacity and additional features such as email integration and in-depth integration. Which can help you better manage your connections. A good CRM will help with every stage of your interactions with clients, potential clients, suppliers, supporters and possibly even your competition.
So, what information should I include in my CRM?
You should capture the basic details: name, email, phone, company etc. But of course, the more you know about a customer/potential customer the better position you will be in to sell to them. A good thing to know is the source, how they came to you. It will help you to develop your business if you know how people discover you. It’s good to know how you met and your last contact date, to plan the next follow-up. Record basic contact details, pets, family, hobbies etc. This will mean you have something to connect on and possibly to group target audiences for certain products or services or possible discounts. Be aware of GDPR and do not record personal data that is not relevant.
Your CRM can give you:
- data of who bought what products/services and how often
- profiling information on the types of client you have
- trends for certain times of the year
- a calendar of when last contacted to help you to plan your next communication
- a pipeline view of your prospects and likelihood of the work coming through
Set tags, add notes and schedule reminders. Flag the likelihood to spend and even an estimated purchase value so you know your priority contacts and forecast a pipeline.
A CRM will help you to keep in touch with potential clients to make them feel welcome and valued. Also, to keep talking to existing customers reminding them what you do. You don’t want them to think of you for just one thing, encourage them to come back again and again.
Happy customers are the most loyal and they might be inclined to buy again, with a little reminder!
If you would like to discuss setting up a CRM system I’d be happy to chat.