5 Benefits of Using CRM Platforms
5 Great Benefits of Using CRM Platforms
5 Benefits of Using CRM Platforms

We’ve all heard about CRM – Customer Relationship Management.

Arguably, relationship is the most important acronym, because relationships are the bridge between what your business offers and what your customer needs.

So, businesses are adopting CRM platforms to improve the quality and consistency of their relationships in an effort to boost customer loyalty and overall improve customer experience.

Once you start using a CRM platform, it’ll be hard to imagine what life was like before you did.

One reason being, CRM platforms allow you to keep everything related to managing your  customer relations, such as data, notes, metrics etc. all in one place; keeping everything structured and organised.

Moreover, a CRM platform can help your company to target different audiences, set alerts based on customer’s activity and maintain relationships.

Best of all, it’s a system that can be used across all departments, so you can ensure all team members are provided with the correct data in order to create the best customer experience.

Of course, benefits may vary between departments or even industries, however here are 5 benefits of using CRM platforms for every user.

1. Better Customer Service

CRM platforms today come with a wealth of features, but initially the software was created in order to improve relationships between a business and its customers.

One of the biggest benefits of using a CRM platform is that it can manage all of your contacts and gather important information, such as demographics and purchase records, all in one place.

More importantly, the platform makes the data accessible to anyone in your company, across any department, who needs it.

As a result, every employee will have the relevant data they need to know about the customer at the touch of a button, therefore being able to provide a better customer experience and overall boosting customer satisfaction.

2. Improved Customer Retention

Once you have converted leads, you’ll want to work just as hard to retain them and encourage customer loyalty.

Consequently, high customer turnover can have negative effects on your business, such as diminished revenue or disrupted cash flow; keeping a customer is up to 7 times cheaper than getting a new one.

As such, a CRM platform and the processes it provides, i.e. automation of customer support and user behaviour tracking to help identify issues your customers face and address them early on to promote repeat business.

3. Collaboration Between Teams

CRM platforms are able to keep all records of any conversations, interactions, notes and more.

Collaboration Between Teams | Benefits of Using CRM Platforms

And, if it’s cloud-based and consistently updated, it means all employees can easily access it to make informed decisions.

Furthermore, some platforms have built-in collaboration tools, which allows multiple employees to work on one file simultaneously or follow the progress of a document.

Simply put, everyone who has access to the CRM platform can work together.

For instance, let’s say a salesperson speaks with a customer and learns more about them – particular fields can be filled in or notes made on their file – then when another team member works on that file, they can see the up-to-date record.

Therefore, marketing, sales and customer service teams can work together effortlessly, without worrying about soiled information; resulting in higher productivity and efficiency overall.

4. Detailed Analytics

We know all businesses need data to make decisions that will help them grow.

However, it’ll be pointless if you don’t know what it means and how you can use it.

Typically, CRM platforms will have built-in analytic capabilities to bring context to your data, breaking it down to make it easier to interpret and being able to take actions.

For example, metrics such as click-through rates, bounce rates and demographics will allow you to assess the success of a marketing campaign and tweak it accordingly.

5. Visual Dashboards

Visual Dashboards | Benefits of Using CRM Platforms

Sometimes, using a spreadsheet to manage your business’s data can become messy – especially because of human error.

Luckily, CRM platforms come with visual dashboards to see all the information in one place; and you can set up a separate dashboard for each employee who has access.

For example, a marketing manager will want their dashboard to show marketing metrics, like how many people an email was sent to and what the click-through rate was, whereas a sales manager will want to view how many calls are made and what positive actions were made.

In other words, dashboards allow users to quickly view the data that’s most important to their work, without having to dig around or run an extensive report.

The Final Word

It’s clear to see the benefits of CRM platforms and why they are used widely today.

So if you’re not yet using one – what’s holding you back?

With all things said and done, businesses want data to be organised and structured so it’s easy to interpret and more importantly, actionable.

CRM platforms gather all insights to gain a deeper understanding of customers to provide an outstanding service.

Lastly, all team members across multiple departments will have easy access, meaning they can collaborate more effectively, ultimately leading to better business.

To learn more, get in touch with us today.

This blog was produced in collaboration with:

Court of Protection Solicitors: Thaliwal & Veja
HR Consultancy Birmingham: Nectar HR

5 Reasons to get the right CRM
5 Reasons to get the right CRM

5 Reasons to get the right CRM

There are 100s of platforms available that are specifically made for CRM or have some kind of CRM functionality. Having one that fits in with your organisation and its processes is key to getting user adoption and return on your investment.

To help businesses select the right CRM platform, Cymer Marketing Solution carries out a CRM Feasibility Review.  This assesses your operations, stakeholders, systems and CRM objectives to give you clearer picture of any changes required to boost your CRM strategy and suitable platforms to fit your business and your requirements.

I will highlight reasons to get the right CRM. Obvious reasons are wasted resource implementing a solution that won’t deliver, but these are 5 that I will expand on:

  1. Pay for functionality that you actually use
  2. Improve agility for business transformation
  3. Reduce duplication of work
  4. More efficient operations
  5. Better customer relationships

1 | PAY FOR FUNCTIONALITY THAT YOU ACTUALLY USE

5 Reasons - 1 | PAY FOR FUNCTIONALITY THAT YOU ACTUALLY USE
CRM Value for Money

Set out your CRM requirements and find a platform that meets them…

It should be that simple, but marketing USPs can mislead us into scoring certain platforms higher because:

  1. They are ranked #1
  2. They have 100 CRM functions
  3. They integrate with 100 other software products

Whilst they may deliver to your requirements, what extra functions will you be paying for and will you ever use them?

Cymer Marketing Solutions provides CRM Feasibility Reviews to help narrow the search to platforms that will deliver the functionality you require, integrate with your operations and provide return on investment, which is ultimately what a business requires.

2 | IMPROVE AGILITY FOR BUSINESS TRANSFORMATION

5 Reasons - 2 | IMPROVE AGILITY FOR BUSINESS TRANSFORMATION
CRM for Business Agility

The COVID-19 pandemic has proven how valuable agility is when business transformation is required.

Those that have achieved more than just survive, but actually thrived in the COVID environment, have done so because their business adapted to the changes and maximised the opportunities available.

Having a CRM platform that is correctly configured to your business processes and integrated with your operations will give agility to change with your business environment, adapt to keep delivering to your clients and convert those opportunities.

Select the CRM platform that not only meets your needs for today, but can grow with you to keep operations delivering profitable business for years to come.

3 | REDUCE DUPLICATION OF WORK

5 Reasons - 3 | REDUCE DUPLICATION OF WORK
Duplication is an inefficient use of resource

Who wants to keep using their resources for copying and pasting data from documents, to spreadsheets?

Are you continuously importing data to send out newsletters?

How is this an effective use of resources? How much is this costing your business?

  1. The time spent, delaying and/or sacrificing other tasks
  2. The cost of salaries
  3. Potential data entry errors from monotonous duties
  4. Missing valuable opportunities

A well configured CRM platform enables organisations to integrate operations and ensures that inefficient duplication is removed from processes.

More efficient processes free up resources to complete more effective tasks – driving more profitable business.

4 | MORE EFFICIENT OPERATIONS

5 Reasons - 4 | MORE EFFICIENT OPERATIONS
Improve your ROI

How many times has the question “Why do you do it this way?” been answered with…

“That’s the way we’ve always done it.”

Usually there are several routes from A-to-B, but taking the most efficient benefits business processes by:

  1. Increased resource capacity to drive economies of scale
  2. Improved customer journeys to aid better conversion
  3. Quicker visibility of potential opportunities to win more business

A well configured CRM platform enables organisations to integrate operations and reduce steps or automate steps in business processes:

  • Event and meeting bookings communications
  • Tracking Marketing activities to Lead Generation
  • Report on Sales pipelines in real-time

Find out if there is a more efficient way for your organisation to work using CRM

5 | BETTER CUSTOMER RELATIONSHIPS

5 Reasons - 5 | BETTER CUSTOMER RELATIONSHIPS
Customers are the lifeblood of any business

If your business is operating with a CRM platform, then it should be capturing customer data and measuring your customer interactions. This will provide you with useful insights that can be utilised to work better with and for your customers and prospects.

Having a CRM monitor your customers’ interactions with your business enables:

  • effective marketing reaching your audience
  • efficient targeting of prospects
  • specific communications responding to Web page engagements  
  • Pre-emptive communication strategies instead of reactive

Building a better understanding of your customers leads to better relationships.

The stronger the relationship the more loyalty given.

More loyalty leads to repeat business and more referrals.

If you’re not getting those insights then it’s a good time to speak to Cymer about better customer relationships with CRM.


Don’t persevere with CRM…flourish with it!

No matter the size or life stage of an organisation, a CRM platform exists that matches your requirements. All you need is an independent guide to set you in the right direction.

Cymer Marketing Solutions is working with SMEs to share its experience and knowledge of CRM platforms, strategy and integration. The aim is to empower businesses with a CRM platform that is easy to use and enhances their business operations to ultimately be more profitable.

Arrange a FREE consultation today at https://cymermarketing.co.uk/contact/consultation to discuss your CRM requirements

What is your Data Flow telling you?
Data is your best friend

Data Management is not always top of mind for all businesses, but it’s such an essential part of an organisation to operate effectively…especially when it comes to CRM. Maybe it seen as an IT requirement, or deemed a technical aspects of certain systems…either way data surrounds us and it’s too precious to ignore or hope for the best.

Something as simple as the formatting of addresses can lose you potential business opportunities.
For example – having address data as a single field can lead to the following issues:

  • More difficult to segment
    • If you want to target specific Towns, Cities or Postcodes
  • Variation of user inputs
    • Part/full address details
    • 3 Park Avenue | 3 Park Ave. | 3 Park Av
  • Additional work to cleanse, especially if dealing with thousands of records

That’s just a sample on a single field…the problem multiplies with every field of data captured.

Good data management is the foundation of great CRM

A Definition of CRM
“A management approach that enables organisations to identify, attract and increase retention of profitable customers by managing relationships with them.”

Hobby, J. (1999) Looking after the one who matters. Accountancy age, 28 Oct, 28-30

Data is the Achilles Heel of most CRM strategies, exposing flaws in operational workflows, impacting on marketing campaign effectiveness and driving customer dissatisfaction with poor data management practices.

Whether being a ‘Start-up’ with 50 records or an established business with 50,000 records, working with poor data will cause issues with communications, restrict visibility of potential opportunities and produce inefficiencies in business processes. Three questions can provide the framework to having better Data Management:

  1. Where does your data comes from?
  2. How is the data collected used?
  3. Which operations use the data?

Mapping the Flow of Data

“In the fields of observation chance, favours only the prepared mind”

Louis Pasteur, University of Lille (7 December 1854)

To gain a full understanding of where your data comes from, how it is used and which operations use it, an exercise must be carried out to map the flow of data through the organisation. Carrying out this mapping provides your organisation with the guidelines to form good Data Management and gain operational efficiencies. You and your organisation will have visibility of:

  • Duplication of work
  • Data format issues
  • Unused legacy data fields
  • Operational pain points
  • Bad data handling practices

The example below shows the results from mapping the flow of data for Enquiry Management in an Higher Education Institute (HEI), but could apply to most organisations.

Working with stakeholders across the HEI, information was gathered around data collected and required for prospective students interested to study. It was found that there were more common data fields than different – making it feasible to have under a single database, giving stakeholders have single view of a prospective student. The benefits are:

  • Stakeholders dealing with real-time data instead of spreadsheets
  • Reduced data mishandling
  • Quicker and more effective reporting
  • More efficient processes with reduce duplication of work
  • More timely/relevant customer communications

Marketing campaigns delayed by gathering records from other systems?
Reports and analysis way behind current operations?
Data processing being duplicated across the organisation?

Good Data Management will resolve this!

CRM – All the Gear, but No Idea
CRM - All the Gear, but No Idea

CRM platforms for gyms across the country always get hammered in the New Year as a rush of new members act upon resolutions to lose weight and be more active. 

Before a foot has been set in the gym, there will be several new members that have spent more money and time on styling their outfits, accessories and supplements over checking more important factors such as:

  • Opening times and class schedules fitting in with lifestyle and commitments
  • Availability of the personal trainers
  • Size and cleanliness of changing facilities
  • PEAK TIME MADNESS! 

This lure of style over substance can be seen in many consumer markets from sporting apparel to cosmetics – aspiration brands that use celebrity endorsers and/or sponsorship as powerful persuasion tools.

The same takes place in B2B as well.  We are still consumers and use similar search evaluation criteria, so endorsements from sources that we recognise and are familiar with success make us feel that the risk of a purchase is diminished, making us deprioritise other key evaluation factors, increasing the risk of failure.

I have heard many stories of organisations being led astray with implementation of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platforms that did not fit the business nor fit for purpose.

How did they get as far as implementation?

It’s the obvious question…one that many organisations ask themselves when it’s too late!  A massive source of frustration when internal stakeholders have bought into the change.

Some of the reasons I have witnessed are:

  • The supplier is looking to enter the UK market and offered a cheap initial price that pleased the FD
  • The supplier presentation and demos showed all the functionality required, but half was in development so was not available at implementation
  • Not all stakeholders included to reduce opposition
  • The supplier is market leader so it must be good

Isn’t CRM is supposed to make things easier?

Implementing CRM software into your business does not bring instant success.  CRM is a marketing tool to understand more about your customers, target prospects more effectively and operate more efficiently. Like with any tool, whether it be an expensive cloud system or Excel spreadsheet, you must learn how to use it properly, integrate CRM as part of business operations or mistakes can be costly and could be unrecoverable.

There’s an interesting article by Chuck Schaefer on Customer Think website highlighting the top reasons for CRM failure, with the top 3 being:

  1. Poor Objectives
  2. Poor CRM Strategy
  3. Scope Creep

Did you notice that none of these reasons relate to poor CRM platforms?  Mostly it is about preparation and process, laying good foundations to build a robust CRM platform across your business.

With so many supplier options, it is easy to get drawn into the “bells and whistles” – losing focus of what your main objectives are, not setting up the strategy to match your business objectives and missing vital process components out of your project scope. 

This is where you need CRM guidance, which I can offer.  With my experience of implementing CRM into organisations I can help advise on platforms, help you integrate it seamlessly into your operations, or even configure your current platform to operate more effectively for your business.

So before investing in a new CRM platform, get in touch on +447791 284542 or solutions@cymermarketing.co.uk

CRM Integrated Solutions

Anyone can do ‘Marketing’!

I joined a group on Facebook last week where a variety of UK small business owners discuss issues they have, search for answers or promote their services.

A new member posted the following message:

I was reading through some of the responses – lots of marketing services being proposed and some members sharing their own experiences. One response, pictured below, caught my attention:

So forgetting about the typos, I had to find out more about this member’s view on ‘Marketing Gurus’ and what advice was being given to resolve the ad-spend returns issue.

What the member meant is that through researching about how Facebook advertising is setup and strategy of paid social media advertising, any person can do it themselves without paying scamming ‘Marketing Gurus’.

Why pay someone else?

This is true…as it is for almost any service. If my boiler breaks down and needs replacing, I have some options:

  1. Have National supplier replace and install it at £3,600 within a week
  2. Have local maintenance company replace and install it at £1,000 within 2 weeks
  3. Go on a Gas Engineer training course, then buy a boiler for £400 and install it myself

Option 1 costs a lot, but gets the job done quickly with a long term service plan.
Option 2 is cheaper, but as they smaller it will take a little longer to complete.
Option 3 is going to cost £4,000 to access the training, 16 weeks to complete training, but I’m prepared for the next time it needs replacing. Although my family may have left me (or frozen!) by the time I complete the course.

Yes the example is a little OTT, but my point is that sometimes there is a very good reason to use a “professional” from a particular field of expertise. In some cases, Option 3 works well and is best for the long-term, but only if your business can operate without your focus on other tasks that you’re responsible for.

What if you get the wrong training? You could end out of pocket with your business gaining nothing for your new skills. There is lots of information available on all matter of marketing subjects and disciplines, but who is it aimed at? What marketing background should you have?

Going with Options 1 or 2 offers you expertise that provides many solutions to resolve a problem, usually including access to their supplier networks. You also gain their experience, both bad and good, to form solutions that have been known to gain results.

“Marketing Gurus” are scammers

Marketing Gurus
Marketing Gurus standing by to scam you

My response to this is every industry has scammers.

Maybe the group member has had bad experience with 3rd party marketing support, but such a sweeping statement shows a lack of understanding of marketing professionals. That could be the very issue causing this view of marketers.

In several places that I have worked, marketing has been dubbed as the ‘colouring in department’ – which in no way comes close to representing how much of a core function marketing is across a whole business.

Whichever route is picked, doing some of your own research is good practice so that you understand some of the language being used and feel comfortable with the solution(s) being proposed. Even if you are competent and confident enough to do it yourself, consider if doing it yourself is the best use of your time – as this is one of your most precious resources.

Marketing professionals exist to help and support your business goals. Get quotations to compare and contrast offerings – use your networks to source out recommended people, should you be worried about their integrity.

Consider how much your time is worth and the added benefits of using a experienced professional.

If you’re experiencing something similar with your marketing promotions and campaigns delivering less than expected, get in touch – solutions@cymermarketing.co.uk.

Remy Clarke
Cymer Marketing Solutions

Starting out

Monday 28 October 2019 – this is the day that I went public with my solo venture as Cymer Marketing Solutions.

Pondering about my future after redundancy, I finally took the plunge to do something different, channelling the negative situation to fuel getting this company up and running, ASAP!

I’m lucky enough to have a very supportive and understanding wife to accept the disruption starting out can bring to the household:

  • less initial income
  • more working hours
  • less socialising
  • zero employee benefits (although I know a company that provides to Self-employed/sole traders – www.pirkx.com)

Although sometimes she seems to forget that I’m trying to start a business…

“While you’re home can you do the washing, clean the kitchen, collect the kids, call the builder and make dinner?And I’ve left a shopping list on the side, thanks.”

My darling wife since i was made redundant

There is a lot to consider, putting you out of your comfort zone as those things we took for granted working for a company previously have to be taken care of on your own.

Definitely use your networks, not only to spread the word that you are in business, but also to help you with the areas that you are not familiar:

  • Accountancy
  • Legal
  • IT and Systems
  • Human Resources
  • Reward and Benefits
  • Marketing

I can scratch off Marketing, but this is a massive one off the list. All the others are important to set up the foundations correctly, but the area that deals with finding your audience, communicating with them so they respond and take actions to make your business profitable is fundamental to keep operating.

My suggestion to anyone starting or thinking of starting out on their own, you need to look at your marketing early on in the process and make proper provision in their budget to ensure you and your business get off on the right foot.

I’m offering a variety of integrated solutions, ideal for Start-ups, at a limited discounted rate starting from £150 (+ VAT). Solutions available are:

Start-up Stationery Solution

Stationery Solutions to help when starting out, from Cymer

Start-up Web Presence Solution

Web Presence Solutions from Cymer

I will help apply a marketing plan to your business, supercharging your audience reach and ensuring that you get seen, but without breaking the bank.

Visit cymermarketing.co.uk/solutions/integrated to find out more.