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by Will Taylor Will Taylor No Comments

Why a CRM system supports your marketing strategy

Marketing is about getting the right message to the right people, and your marketing strategy is how you’re going to achieve that. When it comes to building and implementing a strategy, how does your marketing team know who the right people are and what the best way to reach them is? Data. Here’s how a CRM system can support your marketing strategy.

Understanding your customers

To be able to create and implement a successful marketing strategy, you need a better understanding of your customers than ever before. CRM systems have the capability to capture insightful information that allows you to segment your market and target these segments accordingly. Segmentation (dividing your market into groups and categories) is no longer about just the basics of age and gender. You need great data, the kind captured by a CRM system, to segment clients into groups that are based on your customers’ needs, interests and buying habits, and use that data to strategize your targeted marketing campaigns going forward.

Personalising your content

Understanding the segments you’re marketing to allows you or your marketing team to create content that’s just for them, and your CRM system will help you understand how to deliver this content through the best channels to reach them. Your CRM helps you build an accurate picture of your customers that you can use to make sure your marketing efforts aren’t just more white noise. Communicating with and marketing to your customers in meaningful and relevant ways grows customer loyalty, keeping those customers coming back to you. Your CRM system gives you the insights you need to make your marketing personal.

Understanding your campaigns

Using a CRM system, you can understand and evaluate the performance of past campaigns. The CRM system essentially documents the customer reaction to each marketing element that is delivered to them, which means you know what was effective and achieved the desired result. You’ll know how much impact activities within a campaign are having, and which campaigns overall are closing sales and generating ROI. If you know what worked, you can replicate it and build it into new campaigns. If you know what generated the most ROI, you can make smarter investment decisions in your marketing.

Data-driven marketing is based on collecting and using insightful data so that you can focus your marketing campaigns around your customers. By using your CRM system to support your marketing strategy, you’re using your customer data to ensure you’re delivering the messages your customers need to hear about your products and services, ensuring those key marketing messages are driving your sales, and your business, in the right direction.

Contact our team to find out more about how the right CRM system can revolutionise your customer service and grow your business.

by Will Taylor Will Taylor No Comments

Why your customer service team needs a CRM system

Your customer service team exists for one key reason: to create an amazing customer experience. Customers have higher expectations of service than ever before. A great CRM system is a vital way of supporting your customer service team to provide that next level of service that keeps your clients coming back, time after time. Here’s why.

Great customer experience is vital – and they’re willing to pay more for it
Because customers value the service they receive so highly, they’re willing to pay more for the same products and services if their customer experience meets their expectations. 68% of customers will pay more if the company has a strong customer service record – but it doesn’t stop there. Of this 68%, around half were willing to pay up to 10% more, and just over 12% of them were willing to pay over 20% more if they were receiving outstanding service. Implementing a CRM system is how you take your customer experience to the standard that these customers are looking for.

Provide consistent customer support
Here’s what your customers don’t want to do; have to repeat their story. Again. Again. And Again. They want a consistent service regardless of who they’ve spoken to within your organisation. They also don’t want conflicting answers if they end up speaking to different representatives. They want answers that they can trust. The right CRM system dynamically guides your team to take the right actions, providing relevant information when they need it, and document their client interaction so that other team members won’t be asking your customers to start from the beginning.

Engage with customers, how and when customers want to
The traditional 9am – 5pm, Monday – Friday no longer fits the bill. Customers want, and indeed expect, to be able to contact you on their terms. That means both at the time and through the channel that works best for them. Your CRM system should make it easy for customers to find the answers they’re looking for through self-service, community or social channels, and then if necessary, route cases to the right team member to help. Using AI to support your customer service team means you have smart service bots that create the flexibility your customers want; they’re always available.

Create a unique and personal relationship
Integral to delivering outstanding service is ensuring your customers never feel like a number. The best service makes customers feel like an individual and that they’re getting a personalised service. Using a CRM system gives your team a personalised view of each customer, and their journey with you; it allows them to be proactive and anticipate what your customers might need. It can provide great cross-selling or up-selling opportunities that are relevant and useful, as well as providing further insights for your customer service team.

It’s more cost effective to keep your existing clients happy than it is to find new ones; investing in a great CRM system is vital to not only keep your existing customers happy, but make sure they’re so happy that they’ll tell everyone else about how great you are.

Contact our team to find out more about how the right CRM system can revolutionise your customer service and grow your business.

by Will Taylor Will Taylor No Comments

Why your marketing team needs a CRM system

Marketing is such a crucial part of the success of any business. Using a great CRM (customer relationship management) system to support the activities of your marketing team, no matter the size, can help your marketing team to expand your business and increase your sales.

Understand Your Customers
Collecting data allows you to really understand what your customers are doing. With a CRM system, you can capture and analyse that data easily. When it comes to marketing, it’s not only about getting insights into your customers’ buying decisions but getting to the very basics of who your customers are and how they find you. You’ve done all the background work to target a specific audience; a CRM system provides you with the data analysis to check that your targeting has been successful and identify any other customer profile patterns that may have emerged.

Communicate with the Right People
Successful marketing is based on communicating with the right people, at the right time. Your CRM system has helped you understand who your customers are, so now you can implement targeted marketing campaigns and know you’re actually reaching the right audience. Using a CRM system, you can create personalised customer journeys linked to behaviours through a sequence of touchpoints and actions, that generate leads for your sales team. You can identify which customers are likely to generate the most revenue and tailor-make your marketing and brand-building messages to them to nurture those specific relationships.

Run and monitor multichannel campaigns
A marketing strategy covers multiple channels. The right CRM system makes it easy to both run and monitor multichannel campaigns, collating insights gathered from events and email marketing, as well as social listening data gathered from social media platforms. It makes it simple to engage with your network and build your brand and credibility, helping your marketing team to attract the right potential clients and grow relationships with your existing ones.

Spend less finding new customers
You get better ROI from marketing that nurtures relationships with existing clients than from acquisition marketing. In other words, it costs your business more to acquire a new customer than to retain your existing ones, but knowing when and how to contact existing customers isn’t always easy. Using a CRM system to send relevant marketing messages to your existing clients and strengthen the relationship means you can generate sales without the need to find (and invest in finding) as many new customers.

Understand your marketing ROI
Measuring the ROI of marketing isn’t easy without a way to track lead sources and the revenue they generate. A key benefit of a CRM system is to give you and your marketing team a clear insight into what works and therefore, where to spend marketing budget. Essentially, using a great CRM system means you and your team can make smarter marketing decisions, quicker, and grow your business.

by Will Taylor Will Taylor No Comments

Where are all the women in tech?

As a female in the technology industry, you’ll notice there’s something you won’t come across too often; other women. With so many current initiatives to try and encourage more women to study the core STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering and mathematics), is it really a problem that only 23% of people in core STEM occupations in the UK are women?

 

Growth of the Digital Technology Sector 

The digital technology sector is growing faster than the rest of the UK economy. 2.6 times faster, in fact. That’s pretty significant; there’s an ever-increasing demand for skilled tech employees (employment in the sector rose by 13.2% from 2014 to 2017) that can command higher salaries. According to a report from the O2 Digital Hub, we’re going to need 2.287 million digitally skilled workers by 2020 if our digital economy is going to meet its potential. With an astoundingly low 19% of the digital workforce being female, can we really afford to not encourage more women into the sector and still expect to meet this demand and work towards closing the gender pay gap?

 

Growth of digital technology in all sectors

It’s not just digital technology companies that are growing their skilled tech workforce; all industries are increasingly embracing technology and its ability to support and accelerate growth, so they’re looking for the right people with the right skills to help them do this. For many organisations, it’s near impossible to even remain competitive without integrating technology into their strategy. Take the telecommunications industry; research by McKinsey revealed a strong correlation between profit margin and five specific areas of IT. Without enough women in tech roles to support the ongoing digital transformation that so many organisations are undergoing across all sectors, we’ll experience a shortage of skilled people that can drive and implement these strategies. Industries that already struggle to attract both skilled tech workers and female employees, such as manufacturing, will find themselves with an even smaller talent pool.

 

Diversity is good for business

Businesses in the top quartile for gender diversity 15% more likely to outperform their competitors. In fact, if you add race and age diversity into the mix, this shoots up to 35%. That’s a pretty strong business case to encourage organisations to further embrace diversity and inclusion. It’s the basis for attracting and keeping talent, raising productivity, responding effectively to customers and driving innovation based on a wider range of views and ideas. It’s really no surprise that businesses who actively promote diversity are strong performers in their industry.

 

Why don’t more women work in the IT sector?

While it’s true that men and women are physically different, there’s no evidence to suggest that there’s any significant difference in cognitive abilities between genders. Differences that do exist between genders actually differ between countries and can disappear with training anyway, so there’s no indication that gender differences should account for the disparity between the numbers of men and women in and wanting to enter the industry. There are lots of theories as to why so few women in the UK work in technology, like the perpetuation of stereotypes, for one. But with 69% of girls saying they haven’t considered an IT career because they aren’t aware of the opportunities that are available to them, maybe we should simply start with this: let’s make sure we tell EVERYONE what amazing opportunities are waiting in a career in digital technology.

 

If you would like to find out more, feel free to call a member of our team today on 0113 415 1615.

by press@ixrm.co.uk press@ixrm.co.uk No Comments

Three reasons to consider Microsoft Dynamics 365 for a small business

It is extremely important that SMEs in work as efficiently as possible in to grow to their full potential. Whilst a CRM system may not be at the top of most business owner’s list of priorities it should definitely be a key point of investment.

A recent study has found that 65% of business adopt a CRM system in their first 5 years, whilst 53% of top performing companies continue to invest in their CRM after this period as they attribute a large amount of their businesses success down to the system.

SMEs should consider investing in a CRM system as it has both short and long-term benefits that can help a business in a number of ways, here are just a few:

1. Keep track of your data
A businesses intelligence is incredibly valuable no matter how big the company is. Microsoft Dynamics 365 allows every business to have access to the same data analytics tools, such as PowerBI. Dynamics 365 uniquely brings together different data sources to generate new business insights including reports for sales or finances which can save lots of time which otherwise would be spent on tedious research.

2. It supports your entire business
Microsoft Dynamics 365 can be used to make almost every department of your business work more efficiently. The sales and marketing departments get a clear benefit as the CRM systems help business to manage the quality of their leads and can track through the opportunity stages to a won or lost sale. Microsoft Dynamics 365 bridges the gap between sales and marketing.

3. Dynamics 365 integrates with your current applications
Sometimes the existing software that a company uses can be an obstacle for new platforms, but Microsoft Dynamics 365 is one of the most flexible solutions available to integrate with other systems. There are several methods that can be used to create integration, the simplest being the use of Microsoft Flow which allows drag and drop integration and is embedded in version 9.0 which was released earlier this year.

ixRM is a Leeds-based company that offers a range of bespoke Microsoft Dynamics 365 services and solutions to businesses across Yorkshire. If you’d like more information, get in touch with a member of our team today on 0113 415 1615.

by press@ixrm.co.uk press@ixrm.co.uk No Comments

Microsoft Dynamics 365 for charities

Microsoft Dynamics 365 has many benefits which makes it a viable solution for all kinds of organisations. It helps to collect, manage and organise the data of an organisation’s customers, supporters and stakeholders.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 is one of the leading CRM systems on the market as it can transform all areas of a business and make it work more efficiently. Organisations such as charities and non-profits can also hugely benefit from Dynamics 365 due to the many different tools it has.

Charities are able to tailor the platform to create a bespoke solution which will help them better manage all key areas of the organisation. Through Microsoft philanthropies, charities receive a substantial discount on the cost of the licences making an enterprise product accessible to small charities.

Here are just some features that makes Microsoft Dynamics 365 a must-have for charitable organisations.

Single supporter view
Microsoft Dynamics 365 gives fundraisers a complete and real-time view of every activity and interaction each supporter has with their organisation.

Supporter communication
Microsoft Dynamics 365 can be used to spot trends and opportunities across an organisations database and it also helps to improve the quality and relevance of the interaction with these prospects. One example is that the CRM allows charities to automatically respond to their supporters.

Income processing
Dynamics 365 helps charities manage revenue that comes from different streams by automatically identifying the source of the money. It can identify various aspects of the revenue such as the appeal, campaign and event, and can then categorise it accordingly.

Managing busy events
Charities often work to a busy calendar with various events scheduled and planned through the year. Microsoft Dynamics 365 helps charities to plan, invite people to and organise different events such as charity balls, presentations and galas, so they can make the most out of the opportunities and generate more supporters.

If you work for a charity and would like to know more about how Microsoft Dynamics 365 can help, feel free to call a member of our team today on 0113 415 1615.

by press@ixrm.co.uk press@ixrm.co.uk No Comments

4 Reasons Why Your Business Needs a CRM system

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a process which helps to manage and optimise a business relationship with its customers. CRM systems such as Microsoft Dynamics 365 do this by tracking and analysing the interactions you have with your customers. Having a system that centralises key aspects of your business can help to simplify and secure your customer engagement.

Here is a selection of just a few of the many reasons why your business needs a CRM system: –

Give a forward view of your business
CRM systems, such as Microsoft Dynamics 365, can give help to a ‘future view’ of your revenue streams by helping you identify trends and other leading indicators. This will enable a proactive approach to be taken to allow you to create new opportunities and convert leads more effectively.

Optimise sales process
Through Microsoft Dynamics 365, the sales leader at your company will have access to a sales reporting tool. This will enable them to see the activities of individual salespeople or teams and help to improve the effectiveness of the sales department by identifying issues such as people, calling activity or conversion rates.

Grow business through effective leads
In order to grow any business, this falls on much more than just the sales department, it is a collection of activities across multiple channels which come together to create a lead or opportunity. Businesses can use a CRM to acquire leads from your website, email campaign, seminars, conferences or exhibitions which your salespeople can then act upon. Microsoft Dynamics 365 opens up and identifies more cross-selling opportunities, identify new markets or product or improve calling efficiency.

Customer Intimacy
Customer intimacy involves a business tailoring its products, services and even communication channels to fit different customers, businesses or industries. For many small and medium enterprises, this can help them compete in a crowded and competitive landscape which larger companies can find difficult to duplicate to the same scale.

ixRM provides bespoke Microsoft Dynamics 365 solutions to local businesses across Yorkshire. If you’d like more information about how your business can benefit from a CRM system, call us today on 0113 415 1615.

by press@ixrm.co.uk press@ixrm.co.uk No Comments

New Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Marketing

Microsoft has recently released a new marketing automation app for Dynamics 365. Dynamics 365 for Marketing will help to digitally transform the corporate landscape and enable organisations throughout the UK to work more efficiently.

Dynamics 365 for Marketing integrates seamlessly with Dynamics 365 for Sales. Here are just a few of the benefits and capabilities that the recently-released Dynamics 365 for Marketing app will have for local businesses:

Create and nurture leads

Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Marketing was developed to help companies create and nurture leads from various platforms, including email marketing, website landing pages and phone calls. In short, your organisation will be better able to attract prospects and convert leads from these platforms with Dynamics 365 for Marketing. You can additionally personalise your customers’ and prospects’ user experience with the easy to use configurable templates and designer tools. LinkedIn integration allows leads generated through LinkedIn to be passed directly into Dynamics 365.

Align sales and marketing

Your business can further benefit from the new app as it brings together the marketing and sales activity of your employees to help them work in harmony with one another. You can easily view many pieces of information about your contacts, leads and customers in one place to gain better insight into your market. The process of moving your prospects through the marketing sales funnel will be more efficient with the use of automated workflows and lead-scoring rules that allow you to prioritise your hottest leads.

Event management

Dynamics 365 for Marketing also includes easy to use functionality for event management with the ability for all information about your event to be stored centrally and accessed by the whole team. This can be integrated into your general marketing activity through email and customer journeys to spread the word to your prospective attendees. You can then generate an online event portal for attendees to use for registration and to find the information they need about the event. Easy to create surveys allow you to generate follow-ups after events or gather actionable feedback from customers to help you grow relationships with a deeper understanding of customer needs.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 continues to transform how companies manage their marketing, sales and many other aspects of their business.

ixRM is a Microsoft partner that provides Dynamics 365 services to organisations in the local area. If you would like more information on how a CRM system like Dynamics 365 can help you and your company, please feel free to get in touch today by calling 0113 415 1615.

by press@ixrm.co.uk press@ixrm.co.uk No Comments

How Microsoft Dynamics 365 can save your business time and money

Microsoft Dynamics 365 is an extremely worthwhile investment for all businesses, no matter the size, as it massively improves the efficiency and productivity of all departments within the company. It helps to make all departments work in synergy with each other including marketing, sales, finance and administration to create a more streamlined company.

Simplified scheduling
Having a centralised system for your business, such as Microsoft Dynamics 365, will help to conquer one of the most challenging aspects of offering great customer service. Dynamics 365 ensures you will never let any of your clients down by missing a meeting or appointment as it has an all-in-one view of all client’s requests and calendars.

Bridging the gap between sales and customer services

It’s a common problem when sales sell something that the customer may have an issue, but customer services are not aware.  Microsoft Dynamics 365 allows a service case to be linked back to individual products to allow reporting such as: Best selling product, products with the most complaints, the average time to resolve a complaint, etc.

Electronic DocuSign signatures
DocuSign or AbodeSign can be very easily integrated with Microsoft Dynamics 365 to simplify the document signing process of a business. Typically, to get a document signed it takes lots of toing and froing which takes up a lot of time not to mention printing and scanning costs. However, with Microsoft Dynamic 365 you can digitally transform this process as DocuSign and AdobeSign allow customers to safely and securely sign documents digitally. This helps to get contracts signed and confirmed within minutes instead of days.

Microsoft Dynamics also has many more benefits to help local business save time and money and become much more efficient. If you’d like any more information, contact ixRM today and we’ll be happy to answer any of your questions, call us on 0113 415 1615.

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How to import data in to Microsoft Dynamics 365

As a Microsoft Partner, ixRM specialises in helping businesses to use Microsoft Dynamics 365. Successful use of Microsoft Dynamics 365 is dependent on the quality of data input and potential users may wonder how easy it will be to import data to their new system.

Before beginning to import data into Microsoft Dynamics 365, take a look at the quality of the data you want to import. The value of the data in your new CRM system will depend on its accuracy, and good data will increase the success of your implementation of Microsoft Dynamics 365. You will need to plan before beginning to import data. This will reduce the likelihood of duplications or confused, useless data and will increase the chances of a successful implementation.

Also, consider where your data will come from. Sources may include Outlook contacts, spreadsheets, manual notes or legacy systems. Decide whether you can get all your data onto one type of source before importing, or import data from differing sources separately.

Before you begin to import data, consider what type of data you will import. Usually you are likely to want to import your Account and Contacts records, although you can import other data as well, such as leads. Decide whether to create customised fields or use the fields already provided before you begin to import data.

There are several ways to import data into your new CRM system.

You can enter data manually, import and track Outlook contacts, or use the Data Import Wizard to import spreadsheets for bulk data uploading.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 has several other tools for you to use when you import data such as the useful Import Data Template to download a template for your data,which has pre-determined fields to help you get your data into the correct format for import.

Other useful tools when you begin to import data are Duplicate Detection, Bulk Editing and Bulk Delete in case you import faulty data or you want to update it.

For help with importing data successfully we have created several videos which you can view here, or for any other issues with your Microsoft Dynamics 365 implementation, contact the dedicated specialists at ixRM on (0)44 113 415 1615.

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