As every business is vying for customer attention, it becomes imperative to communicate with the customers at the right time with the right message. With more than 500 Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tools and software programs contending against each other, the world of CRM is getting more and more streamlined while ensuring a more pleasant customer experience.
Let’s personify “CRM”. What would you expect them to be like? Well, they would be trustworthy, straightforward, organized, and most importantly, always there with the right “answers” and “information”. That’s the magic CRM can unleash.
You know the best part of this imagination? CRM Managers already exist and they are pretty much the same thing.
Let’s look into what the industry experts had to say about the structure of the CRM team, challenges, functions they are outsourcing, how CRM can be used to integrate email marketing into other channels, and a protip for the fellow CRM managers.
We operate with a fully in-house team.
The top three challenges that we face are:
We have multiple feedback loops. One example is the customer service data (NPS scores) which we can use to exclude customers that had a bad experience or reward when they are labelled "promoters".
Make a clear distinction between strategic pillars and tactics.
We work with a fully in-house team
According to me, data integration, personalization, and multichannel marketing are the top three challenges for us.
We integrate email marketing with other channels by using data exports and journey builder.
It is not all about email.
We have a fully in-house team.
Getting IT and Sales to a place of understanding. A lot of the time I have to keep things super simple for understanding reasons. However, once we start going into the build we run into IT making changes to other systems that might impact our data/segments we can use for the programs we started planning 6 months ago that are launching soon. Communication with my teams and stakeholders is so important, and making for people to share what was shared and having them rephrase it back is helpful for understanding.
Getting our Contact Center integrated into the CRM world using Service Cloud has been a game-changer for our email campaigns, from one of the emails, to automation programs. This now allows us to take customers out of an engagement program if we have received a customer relation issue from a past or current order. Which allows our programs to pivot to that customer's current needs. The Contact Center is my key player when it comes to CRM.
Planning, planning, and more planning. Hire a full-time project manager. As a CRM Manager, our head is in between IT Requirements, CRM/ESP Tool Requirements, and Functional restrictions, while also trying to juggle Design, Content, Segmentation, Trying to make sure you Email Templates are rendering for Outlook, and trying to get your emails to hit the inbox. It's a lot and Email Production is still 85% of our jobs... and there are not many people who understand it. So by hiring a really amazing project manager they can help with all the details of launching/maintaining CRM programs and processes...
We have a fully inhouse team.
These are the top three challenges that we encounter in our business:
We are currently working on a multi-channel onboarding campaign to test against a single-channel variant.
It's just an email. No one's going to die. (Sometimes it doesn't feel that way.)
We work with a fully in-house team.
Behavior-based personalization, integrating social into a contact strategy, and optimizing email content are the top three challenges for us.
CRM helps to integrate email marketing with other channels by compilation of data collected from a single source.
Marketing automation is the key.
Our team is placed fully in-house.
KPIs, Target Audiences and Design. Project management is key.
For KPIs, I ensure all stakeholders involved know their input matters and provide benchmarks/data to back up objectives and why they were chosen.
For design, I connect with the creative team's workflow and process; ensuring they are aligned on my tasks and submitting briefs that make sense.
Keep a record of everything. Simple but powerful. I always like to refer to documentation whether I need a quick reminder on something that is coding related or an older report that I need to refer back to.
We have outsourced Email Development, Campaign Performance Analysis and Reporting, and ESP Migration to our remote team. The rest of the operations are carried out in-house.
I think the biggest challenges continue to be:
Data - So many organizations struggle with their data, both having clean data coming into their CRM and being able to export and extract meaningful insights. If you have bad data going in, it will be nearly impossible to glean usable insights after the fact.
Process - It seems like the longer we have been sending emails, the longer the process continues to take. There are often many cooks in the kitchen, resulting in various rounds of reviews, changes, "approvals" and final final (no really this is the last one) approvals.
Testing and learning - While testing is a critical component of continuously improving your marketing strategy, it is often the first thing to go when priorities change.
If you can't make it personal, make it relevant. Trying to achieve the perfect 1:1 communication strategy can be a losing battle, especially at scale. If that is holding you back, focus on targeting the largest group with the most relevant message and then use those learnings to improve future communications.
Apart from email development, we have all the teams working in-house.
Our top three challenges are:
Cadence - how much email is too much?
Content - what content is best to resonate?
Re-Engagement - how do we bring subscribers back into the fold?
It makes more data available.
Just get the basics right, and build from there
Except Campaign Performance Analysis and Reporting, Email Deployment, Email Development, and IP Management, we have an in-house team for our operations.
Data quality seems to be the biggest challenge for us.
CRM has facilitated data driven marketing across channels for us.
Data Governance is KING
Understanding the team structure, challenges, solutions and protips from CRM Experts
CRM lies at the cynosure of every modern-day business, and therefore it is inevitable to understand how it works and how you can make it work. We hope these insights from industry experts help you plan your CRM activities better and make the most out of it.