CRM Reading Lounge: CRM & General Articles

Integrating Your Website and Your CRM.

A well-designed and integrated CRM provides a hub to get that 360-degree view of your business.  You can view and understand your customers, your leads, your staff engagement, your marketing campaigns and your financials all from a birds-eye-view.

Too many businesses are operating with silo’d environments and with a hairball of software systems that don’t talk nicely together. Creating an environment that intertwines a businesses website with their social media, CRM, their e-marketing and many other types of software needs so they play nicely together, isn’t just an entry on a bucket list.  It’s real, it’s available and affordable to small businesses with the right tech partner who thoroughly understands your business and your business culture.

Everyone benefits from a centralized and intertwined infrastructure including customers and your internal team members. This is a list of key benefits for an integrated or intertwined environment with CRM at the backbone.

Generate more leads from your website and nurture your contacts.

Tying your online lead strategy through your website to your CRM has loads of benefits and just makes your life so much easier.  Leads are captured when a visitor to your website engages with your brand online and provides their contact information. Using your lead generating tools or your call-to-action hooks such as downloadable articles, e-books, surveys, webinars and information through your website and social media, in exchange for a visitor to leave their contact information.  It’s like getting to first-base in a ball game.
With a CRM you understand behaviors such as what emails were opened and what downloads interested your leads and contacts. You can assess what pages they visited on the website and what internal follow-up has transpired with your sales, marketing or customer service teams.
All this knowledge improves how you easily personalize future messaging to a contact, using a CRM.  By directly addressing a contact’s pain points in your personalized communication, you’ll see an increase in click-through rates from all your online outlets, an increase in overall engagement, and happier customers.

Score your leads.

Using a CRM, you can assign a score to indicate which leads and customers have higher levels of interest, and allow a specific score to trigger the next action.  Such as if they engage in another downloadable “hook” or make a comment on the website, then a specific promotion announcement could automatically be sent to them through the CRM.
This approach of having the ability to score, track and personalize communication develops more knowledgeable leads and better relationships, before a sales person ever really needs to get involved. This saves sales teams time to focus on getting more leads and converting the sale. The same approach can be used to reignite the interest of old leads and customers.

Feel the love, with user adoption.

Digital environments that are built around a business’s culture and processes quickly see success with internal user adoption by team members. When a business’s back-end controls and how they manage their environment is built around their website and social outlets on the front-end, with tools that support how a brand markets themselves; then everyone is on the same page and the internal team sees the value, understands the return and wants to use the solution.  Customers are happier, because how they are being served is a direct reflection of what they are seeing and how they are engaging with the brand online.
There is so much technology available and being developed, that building a business around the technology is just not a necessary approach any longer.  Mold and shape the technology to meet your specific needs from all angles.  Most technology is configurable or customizable these days, making creating your own intertwined environment very attainable and affordable for small businesses with the right tech partner.

Identify where communication can be improved.

Reviewing your business’s A/B testing strategies, email open rates, click-through rates, your conversion rates, lead ratios and your sales team’s follow-up statistics will help you to understand where and how to improve your communication.
Marketing teams can test campaign messaging simply with an A/B testing strategy and all results will be tracked within the CRM for easy analysis. For example, a campaign could A/B test several landing pages styles created in the CMS or content management system that would integrate with your CRM. From here the website administrator would easily be able to make changes to content and create landing pages.  To A/B test the landing pages with slightly different messaging, images or layouts in each, would help to understand what resonates best with different user groups.  With a website that is integrated with your CRM, this is an easy task to continue changing by simply editing messages and turning landing pages on and off as you learn what works and what doesn’t.

Automate tasks to free-up talent.

With a CRM, a business is able to automate how and where the data flows and preset defined rules that can trigger a specific follow-up action.
For example, when a lead comes into a website through the social media channel such as Facebook, a profile is automatically set-up in the CRM for that lead using the contact information they provided. The profile is tagged that the lead came from Facebook and any specifics about the lead. That contact can then be sent personalized automatically generated communication from the CRM that is relevant to their interests. A task is assigned to an internal team member to follow-up by a specific date and a reminder will be sent in advance to that team member. Based on the type of future engagement the lead shows, rules are preset and the CRM will ensue proper communication is sent relevant to their behavior and interests.
Automation can not only be used for data-flow and communications, it can also be used for team task assignments, setting milestones, fulfilling tasks, invoicing and approvals to name a few. By sending leads and customers what they need and information that is relevant to them soon after they engage on the website, your brand stays top-of-mind and a relationship begins to form. This approach can shorten the sales cycle and frees your staff to focus less on maintenance and more on tasks that directly drive revenue. Timeliness makes an impression on the site visitor; and for you as a business owner time is money.
Integrated systems and environments also reduce the skilled IT support required to maintain that hairball of non-cooperative software systems that don’t talk nicely to one another.

Analysis to learn what’s working and what’s not.

With a plethora of reports and ways to slice and dice information, you are able to garner an educated understanding of what lead generation hooks, campaigns, actions and tasks were most successful and for which groups of people. You also know what does not work.
Internal team members are better educated with custom reports and auto-generated dashboards that show relevant information pertinent to the operation of their specific day-to-day routines, keeping everyone working toward the right goals.
A clear vision with facts to prove it quickly emerges for your business. Your 360-degree view informs what practices to keep and what to quickly eliminate. An integrated system makes customers happier and makes businesses more efficient and flexible to drive relationships, make changes, add product and streamline or automate processes.
Without a central location to view and operate a business, leadership is often managing in the dark.  Technology and digital strategies are moving way too fast and too competitively, for businesses not to have the knowledge and flexibility they need to compete.

What would be your ideal vision for operating your business?  What does your business marketing bucket list look like?

About OurHelix.

OurHelix is a digital agency of marketers and technologists, that combine the web, social and CRM to create custom solutions that help businesses and organizations build their brands, drive their revenue, automate their practices and centralize their data and information.  Creating marketing environments that your people want to use with systems that talk nicely together.

We are a high-touch agency that codes.  Most agencies don’t code, we do.  We take a high-touch approach to fully understand your business, your culture and your pain points; we envision what you need to make the pain go away and have the creative talent, emotional connectivity and skill-set to build it.  With custom tools available to us that we’ve already built and by using the best-of-breed on the market, we are able to make Fortune 100 solutions that are affordable for small businesses.