(Art credit: Andrea Hernandez, “Vinyl Bliss”)

Most small businesses struggle with relationship management. Many don’t know how to deploy the right systems, and those that do often make use of the wrong tools or software, spending precious money on things that don’t really help them.

You want to be among the small minority that gets this right, because that will put you way ahead of the competition.

As a smaller business that does not have access to the same resources as most larger competitors, every inch of land you can capture matters. Focusing on customer interactions and customer relationships is the right way to boost growth – you can pat yourself on the back for reading this, because you’re already walking in the right direction.

Keep reading to discover what customer relationship management (CRM) is and how you can use it together with email marketing to boost your business productivity.

What is CRM?

CRM stands for customer relationship management, which typically involves a business using specialized software that allows them to store and access important data related to their clients.

This consists of compiling data from multiple sources, including previous interaction history between the customer and business, phone calls, emails, social media, and live chats.

Getting to know the customer better can help businesses provide better services, retain more customers and boost sales as they provide support throughout the entire customer journey.

To better understand why you would want to use a CRM system for lead management and marketing campaigns as a small business, put yourself in your customer’s shoes.

As a small business, you want to make your customers feel special, like your entire product or service was built, designed, and made for them specifically.

You can only do this if you know your customers intimately, and for that, you need to store information relevant to them and use it whenever you communicate with them.

Here’s where a good CRM platform or CRM software comes into play. It allows you to store relevant data and contact information of potential customers for better contact management. You can use this data in targeted marketing campaigns to ensure that your marketing efforts are fruitful.

How does CRM go hand-in-hand with email marketing?

Imagine if you had to manually dig through all the interaction history of each customer in order to properly craft an email that you think would make an impact. Not only is this process tedious, it’s also time-consuming.

By pairing your email marketing campaigns with a great CRM solution, you will be able to craft more personalized emails that target your potential customers better.

Not only will you begin to see the difference in traffic to your site, but also in sales as customers begin to feel like your products are aimed at them. You might even realize that it’s possible to market all kinds of content solely via email.

It’s also helpful if you’re trying to ask for a review, as customers are more likely to take time out of their day to fill a survey if they feel it’s for someone who knows them or cares about them. A great way to do this is with a poll builder, which you can send to them through a personalized email based on the data you have.

Good CRM software helps make a huge impact in your email marketing campaigns. This is because it provides premade templates for email marketing that you can use to simplify the process and save time. The other benefits that good CRM software helps provide are:

Syncing customer data with other systems for easy use

Customer data is the key to your entire strategy. But data that isn’t categorized and well collected can be extremely hard to use. You want all your data in a single location, easily accessible from whatever other service you are using to give you some spectacular results and make the marketing process far more efficient.

Helping you spot potential customers within your sales funnel

Sometimes you may not realize someone is a great potential customer unless you let the data paint the picture for you. A good CRM software will help you identify people with the potential to be customers within a sales funnel. This works for identifying potential clients for your business as well if you’re a service-based business.

These are people you may have otherwise skipped or overlooked, costing you a potential sale. And with the right email marketing tool, you can easily schedule an automated email that your new customer might find useful.

Recording and tracking customer interaction history

You don’t want to forget issues that a customer previously had. Not only does this give your customers the feeling that you don’t really value them as individuals, it also makes you look uninterested.

However, when you record and track customer interactions, it makes it easier to target more customer-specific emails to the right customers. Not only does this increase your odds of a sale but it also makes customers feel like the products you send their way are useful specifically for them and it makes you seem thoughtful.

This gives the appearance that you care and value your customers and drives long-term loyalty. Remember that doing business or hiring by relationship building is more beneficial for everyone involved.

Automated alerts and reminders for scheduled events

While it may be almost impossible to remember specific events or to send out emails to each customer based on important days or events, you can always automate this function, making it far easier to keep in touch with your customers, especially on important days.

For example, you can send out an automatic email to your customers on their birthday with a special coupon or discount code giving them a one-day discount. While trying to manually remember everyone’s birthday would be nearly impossible, it only takes a few clicks to automate it.

You can also automate your emails to go out on a specific day or at a specific time, no matter what you’re doing at that moment. Knowing your customer base in great detail can help pick the best time to send emails.

Integrating CRM with email marketing can be invaluable for your business if done right. Now that you know the various ways it can boost your business function, it’s time to get the process rolling!