Making a good first impression on prospects and customers through your marketing message is important. So is following up with additional brand communication. That’s why your customer relationship management (CRM) tool plays a critical role in lead generation.
As previously outlined in our blog about setting a good foundation to measure success, having the infrastructure in place to track your target audience through the customer journey is crucial for measuring, tracking and boosting performance. Hence, CRM and lead generation synergy is synonymous with marketing success.
Keep reading to learn more about why CRM and lead generation alignment is vital.
Understanding CRM Systems
What is a CRM?
CRM tools help brands log centralized customer data. Depending on the type of CRM chosen, this can include name, email, phone, purchase history, and they can even allow companies to send automated marketing messages via email or SMS directly through the platform. A centralized CRM platform can also provide payment processing, customer service and more. CRM and lead generation synergy are accomplished through various tasks and features available through the tool itself.
Core Functions of a CRM
While a tool like this can do a lot of heavy lifting, what exactly are its core functions when it comes to lead generation? Here are the top three roles your CRM should fill when it comes to lead generation:
- Contact management – It’s all about the leads, right? Then obviously contact (lead) management is imperative. This includes data collection such as the above-mentioned, name, email, phone, account number, credit card information and any other
important identifying pieces of information your brand needs.
- Data storage – Secure data storage is another important piece to CRM and lead generation synergy. Especially for repeat customers who trust your brand with billing information, excellent data storage that is secure and keeps sensitive customer data safe will be key.
- Communication tracking – Customers expect a lot from brands. They are looking for added value including being alerted to promotions, informative content and personalized messaging. Your brand will also want to know what pushed the needle with the target audience. What subject line prompted the opening? What internal content secured a click-through? What ended up closing the deal? Tracking these communication points and more is vital when it comes to CRM and lead generation synergy.
Benefits of Having a Centralized CRM Platform
Having centralized customer data through your CRM provides a host of benefits. Salesforce, a leading CRM provider, shares its top six:
- A single view of the customer for cross-functional insights and reporting
- Dashboards that visually showcase data in action
- Customer-centric automation
- Proactive service
- Optimized processes
- Simplified collaboration
These benefits will help brands not only see and communicate with the customer as an individual but also get an overall view of the target audience in general. Automation functions will enable quick and easy customer service and contact.
CRM and Lead Generation Synergy
How CRM systems and lead generation work together
Lead generation is about finding people who might be interested in your product and connecting with them and guiding them toward purchase. A CRM system will collect, store and facilitate communication with these important people, creating CRM and lead generation synergy.
How CRM tools capture and organize lead information
It can be as simple as using a form fill on your website or landing page. When a potential customer enters their information, the CRM tool will capture, store and even organize that information. Meaning that depending on the type of information collected, you could sort by age, location, products of interest and more!
Track and manage interactions
CRM and lead generation synergy will go a step further with automation and the ability to track and manage communication. This means that email blasts can be sent to segmented audiences with unique and personalized messaging. Customer service efforts can be documented as well. Since a CRM provides centralized customer data, all interactions can be tracked and managed in each customer’s profile.
Some top providers
Want to get in on the benefits of using a CRM? Here are some of the top providers to help you achieve CRM and lead generation synergy:
- Salesforce – A prominent CRM with a plethora of capabilities and options.
- Monday – Focuses on automation to save small businesses time.
- HubSpot – Did you know that HubSpot offers a free version of its CRM? Now you do! A great tool for smaller teams or startups on a lean budget. Paid options are also available with more capabilities.
- Freshsales – A fantastic basic CRM that will help your sales reps track important customer information.
These are just a few of the numerous CRM options. Whatever your need and budget, there’s a CRM available that can help your brand.
A CRM is a critical tool to be used for lead generation and relationship management. CRM and lead generation synergy is facilitated through contact management, secure data storage and communication tracking. Some CRMs offer additional features including communication automation, which makes it quicker and easier than ever to send relevant and personalized communication to customers. Brands need to review CRM options and pick one that best fits the customer and business needs.