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Which Type of CRM Is Right for You?

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A personal CRM is an excellent resource for any business, whether you’re a small startup with a few loyal clients or a larger company with extensive client data. In the competitive world of business, companies that stand out are the ones that go the extra mile in building trust with their clients and maintaining customer relationships. Studies show that people prefer small businesses to giant corporations and will spend slightly more to support them. What makes small businesses preferable to large corporations, and how can your company continue to maintain that quality as it grows? While larger companies may have more resources and staff, smaller businesses excel at customer service because they can dedicate more time and attention to each customer. 

While a well-formatted marketing campaign can be key to effectively reaching clients and building relationships, some businesspeople say that customer service is just as important—if not more so—than marketing. Your potential clients may have already received marketing and other forms of solicitation from your competitors, but creating a personalized experience for your customers will set you apart. 

As your company grows, however, it can become difficult to keep track of current clients, potential client leads, and each of your team members’ contributions to the customer’s journey. A personal CRM can be helpful in managing and adding to your network. It can help you schedule meetings, set follow-up reminders for important emails and phone calls, and even automatically update information about your network if they have been in the news. You can also use a personal CRM to take personal notes about your clients so they feel understood when you remember the details that matter most to them. There are a few different types of CRMs, though, and you will need to define your company’s specific need for the software before choosing a type. According to this free course on CRM software, there are four main types of personal CRMs. Read on to learn more about these four types and how your company can use them.

1. Strategic CRM

A strategic personal CRM aims to put customers first and to improve your company’s knowledge base regarding clients and their needs. This can involve compiling customer information from customer interactions across multiple devices, platforms, and types of communication including emails, phone calls, and social media. A strategic personal CRM is a great choice if you’re looking for your team members to form personal connections with clients in order to better understand the work that they do. In order for a strategic CRM to work effectively, employees from multiple teams and departments must be willing to share information and provide feedback. A strategic CRM can be helpful for marketing, sales, finance, and even more technical or creative teams. 

2. Operational CRM

If your team members neglect customer service and feel overwhelmed by tedious tasks, an operational personal CRM could help. Small businesses and larger corporations alike can benefit from the use of an operational CRM, which helps standardize and regulate selling and marketing processes. These CRMs focus on automating basic marketing, customer service, and sales tasks so your team can spend more time getting to know their clients individually and less time inputting data. An operational CRM can manage accounts, leads, contacts, and products and analyze customer information to determine the best marketing styles or campaigns for each client. 

3. Analytical CRM

Like operational CRMs, analytical CRMs focus on consumer data and are more data-focused than customer-focused. This means they’re well-suited to companies with large amounts of customer data. Rather than automating a company’s selling and marketing processes—although all CRMs share some of these features—an analytical CRM stores and interprets data related to purchase history, credit score, customer loyalty, and the sales of certain products over others. An analytical CRM can help your team members better tailor marketing campaigns and customer service based on customers’ past responses. 

4. Collaborative CRM

If your company works with other companies, or you find that important client information gets lost in communication between different teams, a collaborative CRM might be best for you. Collaborative CRMs are best for companies with a more significant number of employees than fewer employees who wear many hats. A strategic CRM will likely be most beneficial in that case. Collaborative CRMs can contribute to your company’s growth and broaden its horizons. These CRMs can even share information across multiple businesses to truly optimize the market research. This is great if your company is partnered with others in the industry and could use advanced chat and video call features.

Conclusion

Whether you’re a small startup or a large corporation looking to spend more time with its clients, you and your team will benefit from at least one type of customer relationship management software. A CRM has the potential to increase communication between teams, keep track of those vital client leads, and keep your employees actively involved in client relationships. A team that communicates with each other and clients certainly sets the standard for others in the industry.

Jacob Maslow is a Columnist at Disrupt Magazine. Based in the Middle East, he specializes in Journalism. He is the founder and editor of several news sites including Legal Scoops and Streetwise Journal.

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