A few decades ago when there was no email, a pile of letters would land on someone’s desk each day. These letters had to be responded to appropriately – a business couldn’t allow them to just pile up forever. The communications had to be managed, responded to and filed accordingly so the company could operate efficiently and effectively.
Today, email is a more commonly used means of communication than letters ever were, and of course, messages that are of significant importance must be saved. Sure, you can file them away neatly in an email folder, but can your email program tell you the history of your entire team’s relationship with that particular client or prospect?
What about other contacts within the same prospect or customer’s company? On the flip side, can others in your organization see important communication history when messages are buried in your inbox? The obvious answer to these questions is NO, and they are just a few reasons why your email client shouldn’t be solely relied upon for use as a CRM solution.
Most email programs allow tasks and appointments to be attached to each contact, and many even have nifty detail fields that can be entered for each contact, but (and this is a big but)… can your email program profile, categorize, differentiate and cross-reference all of the companies, clients or prospects these contacts represent across your organization?
CRM Software fills the multi-faceted, cross organization relationship void that email clients just can’t handle. A CRM program that works in conjunction with and extends your email program is the best option for companies struggling with this problem.
A corporate CRM solution that connects to an email program (like Microsoft Outlook) ensures that:
- Appointments are efficiently created and saved as part of the record history for the corresponding account, client or prospect company
- Task use in the CRM will drive efficiency, reduce redundancy and connect team members to leverage the efforts of each other
- Email communication and relevant documents (like quotes and contracts) can be attached to the account/prospect/contact’s CRM profile and shared, viewed and even responded to by others when necessary.
The reality is that an email program cannot double as a CRM system; it is primarily a means of “personal” communication exchange. Companies that allow their team to manage business relationships independently from one another within a personal email system are taking an unnecessary risk.
You might also like:
Effective Telemarketing Techniques http://www.thinkaboutcrm.com/effective-telemarketing-techniques
Using Email Marketing Software for your Business – The Benefits and Disadvantages http://www.thinkaboutcrm.com/using-email-marketing-software-your-business-benefits-and-disadvantages
5 CRM Techniques that Work http://www.thinkaboutcrm.com/5-customer-relationship-management-techniques-work