Customer relationship management, or CRM for short, is the process by which a company identifies customers based on profitability or sales, and markets to them specifically. By identifying the best customer, the company has the ability to provide a unique offering to that customer or customers. This means repeat visits by that customer and a relationship that should be sustainable even through bad economic turns.
Customer Relationship Management means that a company possesses the knowledge and capability to not only identify a target market or segment, but it is also able to provide a unique offering to maximize benefits for both companies involved. There are several steps involved when evaluating the customer relationship and providing the offering as follows:
Most companies do not take the time to evaluate who their best customers really are or what they might look like. Instead, they go by something like a percentage of revenue calculation. But they don’t take into account the amount of resources or time a large high maintenance customer may be using up and therefore digging into their profits.
Once you have identified your ideal customer, your sales and marketing activities should be targeting those particular customers. For example, if you identify entrepreneurs as your ideal customers, you should target your marketing and sales activities toward places that attract entrepreneurs.
Many companies develop new products or services. Then they ask their sales and marketing teams to go sell them without evaluating market needs. Your existing customers are the easiest to sell to. So make sure that your core business and any new products you add are aligned to serve your ideal customer profile.
In a down economy, the companies that survive are the ones that can show their unique offering or value and in a recovering economy those are the companies that thrive. Figure out what unique assets your company can bring to your ideal customer. Then help your sales and marketing team communicate them to prospects. Companies that stand out are those that can build customer relationships. In addition, they provide a meaningful service and value to their ideal customers.
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