Imagine a world where your small business had processes in place that meant that you never had to search through your email inbox to find an important email. Every time you need to call a new lead or customer, you’re able to quickly search for their phone number and refresh your memory of the last communication your or your team had with this person. The call results in you scheduling a meeting which you then record in your electronic diary. You send a meeting invitation to your colleague. The person you spoke with requested that you send a document, so you set yourself a task with a scheduled reminder. You also save your notes of the conversation in the client file, so your colleagues will be up to speed. All of the information you need is at your finger tips, synced and accessible from your home computer, office, Blackberry and ipad.
This kind of blissful organisation doesn’t have to be a daydream. You could experience it for yourself, if you didn’t believe these 3 myths aboutCRM (customer relationship management) systems.
Myth 1 – CRM systems or only for large companies.
True, large companies do use CRM systems to help formalise their administrative processes and ensure information can easily be accessed throughtout the organisation as needed. You may not have an office block with 500 employees, but even a freelancer or self-employed solopreneur can still benefit from formalising administrative processes. For example, an Business Coach could create customised fields to track the source of each new lead. Because she can see the drop down menu when she adds new leads to the system, she is reminded to record the information. She also records the exact time and date of each new email or phone enquiry meaning she can match the enquiries to her marketing campaigns.
Myth 2 – CRM systems are difficult to manage.
Your contacts can easily be imported into the CRM system, making it easy to get started. CRM systems actually make it easier for you to manage information with cloud storage, you can save copies of your client invoices and contracts for quick retrieval from any computer. When you need to email a client, you can do a quick search for their email address, and send an email direct from the system. The email will automatically be saved the client record. When you’re working from your email inbox, you can add a special email address into the bcc field, and the email will automatically be saved to the client history. It’s easy to add custom fields to suit your business. You’ll have all of the information you need accessible from any computer anytime.
Myth 3 – CRM systems are expensive.
Some of the complex CRM systems sold to large Corporate businesses are expensive, but small businesses can get organised for £12 per month!
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