While it’s important to market and cater for wider audiences to increase brand awareness, your target market/audience is significantly more important as they are most likely to convert to paying customers now, rather than in the distant future (or possibly even never). You will need to focus on your target audience in order to market specifically for that group by creating advertising campaigns to make them feel both important and powerful.
However, this can’t be done unless you truly know and understand your target audience. Creating marketing personas and an effective CRM strategy is an efficient tool, but this technique requires more than creativity – also extensive knowledge based on reliable data. The collection of customer data allows you to truly know your audience and be able to address them effectively.
Moreover, collection of data isn’t the end, you must not only know how to collect it, but how to interpret and implement it in order to utilise it and create great campaigns and follow through successful marketing.
Why collect data about your audience
The use of collected data helps to create personal relationships with customers, which will ultimately result in customer loyalty and retention.
Collecting, organising, interpreting, implementing customer data are key steps in any successful business. An effective CRM strategy allows you to do this effectively and successfully. There are some simple steps you can take in order to build your customer relationships and ultimately it will help your marketing and will also save you time so you can focus on growing your business.
Benefits of collecting customer data
The most important advantage of collecting customer data is that as a result you will be able to create an effective CRM strategy. CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management and refers to managing an organisation’s relationship and interactions with customer and potential customers. CRM systems allow companies to interact effectively with customers, streamline marketing processes, and improve profitability. Other benefits of data collection and CRM strategy include:
- Increased ability of resolving customer issues
- Tracking customer spending habits
- Choosing the most effective marketing media
- Making purchase recommendations and suggestions
- Increasing customer retention rates
Customer acquisition and retention are at the heart of data collection and CRM and they also represents the goal of every motivated business owner.
The steps of data collection and use
Collect as much data wherever you can whether it’s on the phone, in person, online. The kind of data you are interested in depends on what you want to sell to people; it needs to be relatable. Methods to collect data from customers include:
- Pop-up forms on websites
- Asking people about their interests when signing up
- Using cookies on your website to help track visitors, personalise landing pages, and distinguish between multiple page views and single visits
- Using location data from customers when they download an app or check-in on social media
- Observing social media activity
A way to persuade prospects to provide personal data is offering a reward, such as providing access to free Wi-Fi so you can see what websites people visit while shopping in your store or offering free resources to people in exchange for them giving their email address.
Simply collecting data is not enough; you will need to organise it so that it is easy accessible to look back on and use. A good idea is to sort customers on factors such as geography, demographics, engagement levels, etc. Data organisation is a major part of an effective CRM strategy and allows you to target specifically to groups using the type of message that will influence them.
The next step is to be smart with your data. Find out what data means and how you can use it. Who is buying products and why. There are a lot of questions you can ask yourself and the answers will allow you to focus on customers’ needs and wants. Learning from customer data means you will:
- Improve your marketing by understanding the behaviour of prospects that become customers
- Improve your products or services by getting helpful product feedback
- Find the most effective way to customise promotions and special offers
- Create a more personalised and pleasurable shopping experience
- Get ideas on how to create new products or services
- Use the data you have gathered to create interesting and shareable content
Now that you know more about your audience, put 100% into marketing for them. Save time by using automation, for example you can set up automated emails or messages to different regions based on the time they are most likely to view it. Dedicated software comes with other features such as selecting relevant customers for certain promotions.
How data collection works
Gathering and storing large amounts of customer data and using it to market your products or services more effectively may seem like a very complex process, but it doesn’t have to be this way thanks to the multiple CRM software’s available to you.
Nowadays, creating a successful CRM strategy without automation tools is impossible to imagine. A basic CRM software functionality and capability checklist includes:
This allows users to organise contacts into groups so the organisation can better cater to them.
No marketing campaign will produce the expected results without proper customer segmentation – customer segmentation tools organise customer data coming from various sources and divides customers into groups sharing similar characteristics, such as buying patterns or age.
Customer opportunity management
It is a tool allowing you to identify customers that are most likely to convert. Also called lead scoring, the feature helps you streamline marketing teams and optimise sales processes.
This technology enables businesses to determine the best customers to follow up with based on a variety of factors.
Top CRM software should always include the possibility to generate reports. This allows users to view statistics in a visual manner and to have access to real-time data updates to make data-driven decisions.
The hard data from past campaigns, collected from social media, website traffic, and polls, can be used to create better sales campaigns in the future.
Having access to your data using a remote device can turn out to be crucial when you are on the go and need to make decisions fast to benefit your business.
Being able to chat with employees and partners from the same user interface where you provide customer support is valuable.
Email marketing integration
If you don’t require a standalone, robust email marketing service you may be satisfied with email features provided by a CRM application. However, many CRM products offer the possibility of integrating separate email marketing systems so you don’t have to import information to your CRM.
If you want to focus on you relationship with a certain customer, reliable CRM software should provide you with the tools to manage each customer case individually, in a secure environment.
Quote and order management
CRM software users can create a quote with details when a customer is interested in purchasing a product or a service. Such tools improve order processing capability and the relationship with customers.
Sales performance management
Sales managers need to see what aspects of a sales team are working well and which need improvement. CRM platforms can offer tools to manage the performance of sales platforms, identify problems, and address problems efficiently.
You can serve your customers well when you manage your employees well in the first place. For instance, a customer’s request will remain in pending status unless your employees know who should work on it. Tasks management tools can help you direct employee work better starting with the simple fact of assigning tasks and making sure they are completed on time.
How we can help
Your business can benefit from the advantages provided by the latest CRM software and perform data collection in an effective manner by using tools such as Zoho.
Visual Marketing Australia can assist with marketing automation and CRM as we are an authorised Zoho partner. The peak of marketing automation and Customer Relationship Manager is available to you through VMA; we provide all 10 Zoho PLUS applications and all 40+ Zoho ONE applications. Contact us now and let us know how we can help with data collection and CRM!
With over 38 years’ experience in Print Media, Sales and Marketing, Online Services & Marketing plus Financial Service industries. John brings a wealth of knowledge to Visual Marketing Australia. As a Certified Google Partner, his Digital Marketing knowledge includes: Web Design & Development, SEO, Mobile App. Development, Online Marketing, Online Video Marketing and Email Marketing Solutions. With 8 years experience of using Zoho CRM it is a natural progression to become and Authorised Consulting Partner so we can now ad Sales and Marketing Automation to the list.