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Consider the hours your company spends each week on marketing endeavors. If you’re like most companies, the time you spend connecting with potential clients and customers is significant. In fact, in 2012, an average of 10.4% of a company’s revenue was funneled into marketing advances. Marketing is simple in theory but running a successful marketing campaign takes skill, practice and, most importantly, time.
For many companies, this is the ultimate conundrum – how can the proper amount of skill, practice and attention to detail go into marketing processes without taking up too much time and costing the company valuable resources?
For the industrious companies who want to stretch their resources and make best use of innovative approaches to getting the job done, automated marketing is a simple solution for saving time and money while simultaneously freeing up human capital for other purposes. CRMs, for example, are highly effective at streamlining marketing automation efforts, collecting data and highlighting active leads for companies to follow.
What Are CRMs?
CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management, a model that seeks to manage marketing campaigns, data collection, customer interaction and lead activity. Some CRMs are very basic and simply track contact names and statuses, while others hone in on interactions with email campaigns, website activity, sales data and statistical analysis of marketing projections.
For companies who want a more hands-on approach, some CRMs are fully manual or have the option to allow marketing departments to manage data by hand
This gives companies an integrated database through which to track leads, lead activity and marketing promotions in a managed way. More companies, however, prefer their CRMs to integrate more fully into their marketing automation, keeping all of their data working together in a cohesive and personalized way.
How Do CRMs Work?
CRMs work in a number of different ways depending on product specifications, company needs and marketing goals. Hubspot, for example, manages web traffic and social media campaigns, provides web analytics based on site visitors and interactions and makes suggestions on how to better market to potential customers.
Many CRMs are capable of meeting a wide variety of data collection, inbound marketing, and tracking capabilities to satisfy a wide variety of internal and external activities while others have more specified focuses on different areas of marketing. These CRM types and functions include:
- Marketing – measuring campaigns and cross-referencing success over multiple channels, tracking clicks, responses, and interactions, and integrating multiple forms of contact.
- Appointments – managing customer appointments, internal appointments, and programs to track client interactions.
- Social Media – managing social media pages, promoting marketing campaigns, and tracking data associated with client and potential client interaction.
- Customer Service – supporting and promoting channels for customer interaction, contact software and customer contact points and managing customer reward or incentive programs.
With many different platforms, focuses and strategies, CRMs are very helpful in marketing automation, freeing up human capital and allowing team members to focus their time and energy into more involved, detailed job functions.
Why Use a CRM?
While many companies have the capacity to manage customer relationships and marketing without the help of an outside platform, there is no reason to spend time, energy and money in training individuals and occupying their time with functions a CRM can easily handle.
A platform like Hubspot can process the same data in seconds that would take a hours for a human. Preparing reports, analyzing data, evaluating strategies and organizing new campaigns can all be done much quicker with more precision and detail with the assistance of a CRM.
With fierce competition in the market and rapidly evolving technology, it’s no surprise that marketing is continuing to absorb more and more in the way of company resources. After all, without customers or clients, there’s no business.
By using CRMs to assist in marketing automation, companies can take a step back from their marketing strategies, evaluate the bigger picture, and develop new approaches to marketing, all while saving time and money.
Whether your marketing ambitions are succeeding or you’re struggling to get by, using a CRM suited to your company’s needs will help you streamline your marketing automation processes, amplify your current campaigns and help you get a leg up on your competition.
How could a CRM help your company reach new heights?