Are you familiar with what CRM means? This acronym stands for “customer relationship management,” and it’s something that every business out there has to take into consideration when interacting with clients. This is true even on a B2B level. There are some big differences between a B2B CRM and a B2C CRM, but the basic concept is still the same.
One piece of information to take into consideration is that there are real studies that show customers can feel neglected by the businesses they frequent, even though many industry managers say they focus a lot on the customer. The reason is that they often focus on something tangible, like delivering product faster or offering better quality service.
First, understand some key differences between a B2B and a B2C CRM system. One major difference is the reality that a customer is an individual, but a business is a business – meaning multiple people are involved with the process.
While a B2C customer is one person who often can make decisions quickly and with only themselves to think of, B2B decisions usually have to flow through a channel. You’ll likely have to talk to multiple people who manage different divisions, which means you’ll have to manage more contacts. A B2B customer will also likely want more and better service because they’re spending so much more on more products. It’s also a relationship you’ll have to nurture more because businesses are very focused on long-term goals.
Keeping this in mind, there are some important aspects of any CRM system that can be implemented into any business. The three main components are:
Let’s break them down simply:
This pertains to all of the big and little things you do to keep a B2B lead or customer happy, and it largely will involve listening and engagement. A good CRM system doesn’t mean you have to tell clients what you can do for them – it means asking clients what you can do and how to make a relationship valuable in their eyes. It involves research, understanding a client and the overarching business fully.
Another oft-ignored aspect of CRM is what can be called “the breakup phase.” It’s important to understand the profitability and value a lead or customer gives you and how they stack up as compared to others. Even if the relationship you have with a B2B client isn’t one that’s profitable anymore, there are definitely ways to end the relationship on valuable terms.
With any great CRM system, there is a follow through method required. Customer relationships don’t stay positive and valuable if you only care about a customer for a few interactions. The relationship must be maintained, and you can do this through a detailed plan and CRM system that puts an emphasis on continued relationships.
This also includes communication management, and the methods you use for this can vary depending on the system you have in place. With a B2B lead generation service, the technology you’re utilizing will likely have reminders and automated systems in place to make sure you keep the relationship active. If you use a more hands-on CRM system mechanism, you’ll have to find another way to manage the communications through scheduling, scripts, and calls to action.
Specifically, following through is about keeping the relationship from going stagnant without diminishing its value or being bothersome. It includes conversation after the sale and crafting ways to keep a B2B customer on the hook. As the relationship furthers, it becomes more profitable for the both of you.
B2B lead generation and CRM is something that ReOnline specializes in. We can advise businesses on how to up their B2B marketing game, and all they have to do is get in touch.