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By Gene Marks


Don’t You Hate Looking Like A Dope? The other day Harry, a sales rep for a software company, called one of his customers to tell them all about the great features coming in the software’s up and coming new release. He wasn’t prepared for the response he got. “New release?” his customer yelled. “How about getting the OLD release working first!” Because Harry’s company didn’t have a CRM system he had no idea that his service group was working on a problem with this customer. His call did nothing more than enflame emotions, rather than creating good will. More dopey moments like that and Harry could watch his sales disappear. A good CRM system ensures that everyone in the company knows everything that’s going on with your customers. And your prospects, vendors and other parties too. This way no one looks like a dope when representing your business.

Too Few Service Calls, Too Many Donuts: It’s not just penny pinchers who recognize the value of time as well as money. But good penny pinchers do something about it. Do you have a system that tracks how employees spend their time on issues, problems, breaks and other customer complaints? Is service time being wasted? Are there service issues that aren’t being addressed? How come this one part has so many problems? Should we keep doing business with that customer who calls us so much? Can you get an alert when certain issues are breached? Using CRM software to track how productive your service group is will save a lot of pennies in the long run.

Fun And Games With Duplicate Data: For goodness sake, just how many places do I need to keep the same information? Sandy kept asking herself this question. A typical penny pincher, she hated the fact that customer information was entered in her website, in her accounting system, in her email system, in spreadsheets and other databases. “Enough!” she yelled. She got a CRM system. She designed one web form to capture the customer data and the CRM system took care of that. The same data was sent automatically to other systems. Accounting and inventory information stayed in her financial system, but her CRM system was able to be configured to view that data. Enter it once, make it available elsewhere. Buying a good CRM system? A few thousand bucks. Using it to eliminate wasted time and incorrect data entry? Priceless!

Getting the word out – mass communications: Alexis knew that the more customers she could reach, the more opportunities she could create and even more pennies would drop into her bank account. So she configured her www.marksgroup.net CRM system to send out automatic emails to customers who hadn’t ordered in a while and to customers who ordered a product in the past who may be interested in an accessory or similar product. She produced with her system direct mail pieces each day announcing specials. She created a newsletter to keep her customers informed about new developments. Her CRM software sent out faxes to groups of customers who gave her permission to alert them to new incentives. She scheduled groups of telemarketing calls to be made by high school kids in the evening. Alexis is no mass marketer but she’s certainly a great penny pincher. And her bottom line shows the results!

Gene Marks owns The Marks Group, PC.
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