22% don’t understand CRM

QUESTION – how do I maximise conversion rates?

THOUGHT – build and leverage relationships

A survey conducted by Salesforce found that 22% of businesses surveyed don’t know what  Customer Relationship Management is.

In our technological environment, CRM systems are usually supported by software programs. This has led many business owners to believe that CRM is a software program. Unfortunately, others have come to view CRM as a sales tool, and in some respects, it is. However, I would argue that it should be much more than this. Sadly, few really understand how to leverage the potential of a CRM system.

A CRM system should be used as a tool for developing long term relationships. After all, the ‘R’ in CRM stands for ‘relationship’.

Developing relationships is a critical step in maximising conversion rates. It is often the key to immediate sales, repeat sales, and referral. It can also build brand loyalty which can be leveraged to boost margins.
Building relationships that will help increase conversion rates involves more than using a CRM system to remind you to make sales calls or organise a direct mailer. Building relationships that boost conversion rates requires:

  • Regular rather than sporadic engagement and communication
  • Customised engagement and connection with the individual target
  • Delivery of real value at each contact – not just asking for business

Relationships take time. Our best relationships tend to be with people with whom we communicate regularly. This communication may need to be sustained over an extended period of time.

Relationships tend to be with individuals not industries. The best communication is customised to the individual target. Focus your communication on individuals not industries.

Asking for the business or constantly ‘selling stuff’ makes you annoying. It will invariably make appointments harder to lock in and buyers more reluctant to take your calls. Offer real and tangible value in the form of industry insights, leads, marketing ideas or genuine friendship.

Relationships result when you give rather than take. It is becoming increasingly apparent that marketing is moving into the ‘giving era’. This is the whole point of blogging … to provide useful information that builds your brand and builds relationships without actively selling.

Don’t think of CRM as software, but rather as an approach to developing the relationships capable of delivering initial sales, repeat sales, and generating referrals.

In building those relationships, focus more on giving than taking. Customise your communication and stay close to prospects over a long period of time.


InvestP, Convert.com Blog, Wordstream, IronPaper, Demand Gen Report, Impact Communications, The Annvitas Group, Forrester, SalesForce, Optimiser, INC, Forbes, Bang Digital, AdNews, Ninjodo, Hub Spot and E-consultancy


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