Types, Stages of Customer Relationship Management

24/09/2022 1 By indiafreenotes

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a strategy of the organization to manage the current and potential customers. CRM usually refers to a system power tool that is used for contact management sales management and much more. The aim of CRM is to improve business relationships and get better results. Businesses today have become customer focused rather than product focused which is why CRM has gained increasing importance.

Types Customer Relationship Management:

  1. Operational CRM

Operational CRM systems are designed to streamline the day-to-day operations of marketing, sales, and service departments. Their primary goal is to generate leads, convert them into contacts, capture all required details, and provide service throughout the customer lifecycle.

  • Sales Force Automation:

Manages sales activities, tracks customer interactions, and automates sales processes.

  • Marketing Automation:

Facilitates the management of marketing campaigns, from segmentation to campaign execution and analysis.

  • Service Automation:

Enhances customer service with tools for managing customer inquiries, complaints, and service requests.

  1. Analytical CRM

Analytical CRM systems focus on analyzing customer data that is collected through various touchpoints in order to make informed business decisions. These systems are used to understand customer behaviors and preferences, which can help in tailoring marketing strategies to individual needs.

  • Data Warehousing:

Aggregates data from various sources for later analysis.

  • Data Mining:

Uses statistical and machine learning techniques to identify patterns in customer data.

  • Customer Segmentation:

Identifies different groups within a customer base to target specific marketing strategies.

  • Sales Forecasting:

Predicts future sales volumes to help in planning and resource allocation.

  1. Collaborative CRM

Also known as Strategic CRM, Collaborative CRM focuses on the integration and sharing of customer information across different departments and external stakeholders like vendors or distributors. The aim is to improve the quality of service and customer satisfaction by ensuring that every customer-facing entity has the same information.

  • Interaction management:

Keeps track of all points of communication between a customer and the company, whether it’s via email, phone calls, social media, etc.

  • Channel management:

Ensures consistent and effective communication across all channels.

  • Partner relationship management:

Manages the relationship with partners involved in the customer lifecycle.

  1. Campaign Management CRM

This type of CRM blends elements from both operational and analytical CRM systems. It is specifically designed to manage all aspects of a marketing campaign from start to finish. It uses data analysis to design campaigns and then utilizes operational tools to execute them.

  1. Geographic CRM

Focusing on the geographic location of customers, this type of CRM helps businesses market and sell to customers based on their physical locations. It can optimize territory assignments in sales, plan marketing campaigns regionally, and provide location-specific customer service.

  1. Social CRM

Social CRM is a modern extension of CRM that incorporates social media platforms into the customer engagement strategy. It is designed to engage with customers on popular social media platforms, monitor brand mentions, and gather data from social interactions to improve customer service and marketing strategies.

Stages of Customer Relationship Management:

Implementing Customer Relationship Management (CRM) involves several stages, from understanding the need for CRM to its final adoption and ongoing improvement. Properly navigating these stages is crucial for businesses aiming to enhance their customer relationships effectively.

  1. Strategic Planning

The first stage involves identifying the business objectives that the CRM system needs to support. This includes defining clear goals such as improving customer satisfaction, increasing sales, or enhancing customer retention. Businesses need to establish a strategy that aligns with their overall objectives and prepare for CRM integration by understanding customer needs and expectations.

  1. Requirement Analysis

At this stage, businesses analyze their current processes and technology to determine what functionalities and features are needed in a CRM system. This involves gathering requirements from various stakeholders, including sales, marketing, and customer support teams, to ensure that the CRM solution caters to all necessary aspects of the customer lifecycle.

  1. Vendor and Tool Selection

Based on the requirements analysis, the next step is to select the appropriate CRM software and vendor. This involves evaluating different CRM tools to find one that best fits the business needs in terms of functionality, scalability, ease of use, integration capabilities, and budget.

  1. System Customization and Integration

Once a CRM tool is selected, it often needs to be customized to fit the specific needs of the organization. This might involve tailoring features, integrating with existing systems (such as ERP or email marketing tools), and configuring workflows to match the business processes. Proper integration ensures that data flows seamlessly between systems, providing a unified view of the customer.

  1. User Training and Adoption

Effective CRM implementation requires buy-in from all user groups within the organization. This stage involves training sessions for all end-users to ensure they understand how to use the new system effectively. Training focuses on how the CRM system supports daily operations and how users can leverage it to meet business objectives.

  1. Data Migration

This critical stage involves transferring existing customer data into the new CRM system. Data must be cleaned, deduplicated, and standardized before migration to ensure that the CRM system works with accurate and relevant data. This step is crucial for maintaining the integrity of data analytics and reporting.

  1. Testing and Deployment

Before full deployment, the CRM system should undergo thorough testing to fix any issues and ensure it functions as expected. Testing might include functionality testing, performance testing, and user acceptance testing. Once testing is completed, the system can be fully deployed across the organization.

  1. Ongoing Support and Maintenance

After deployment, ongoing support and maintenance are essential to address any issues that users face and to ensure the system operates smoothly. This includes regular updates, system audits, and providing continuous training as needed.

  1. Evaluation and Enhancement

The final stage involves continuously evaluating the performance of the CRM system against the set objectives and making necessary enhancements. Businesses should regularly solicit feedback from users and customers to identify areas for improvement. Performance metrics and CRM analytics play a crucial role in this process, helping to refine strategies and operations over time.