Email is one of the most powerful tools that you can use to communicate with customers. And CRM is one of the most powerful tools that you can use to learn about customers and grow relationships.
For both of those concepts to reach their potential in your business, they need to work hand in hand.
Some CRM systems offer an email marketing function. Others integrate directly with the email platforms you already use. The exact tools are up to you — but there’s more that goes into building this connection.
CRM Email Marketing Tips
To make the most of CRM and email marketing, here’s what you need to know.
1. Outline Your Sales and Marketing Processes
Ivana Taylor of DIY Marketers says, “It’s best to map out your sales and marketing process before jumping into the technology. You’ll need a sales pipeline — which usually includes the following steps: initial contact, qualification, meeting, proposal, negotiation, closing. You’ll also need your marketing process laid out.”
Your marketing process should include all the inbound and outbound techniques you use to make that initial contact with customers.
Bringing CRM and email marketing together requires you to have the right tools. In order to make the best possible decisions, you need to determine what functions are most important to you. So this outline should serve as your guide.
2. Find a CRM That Integrates with Your Email Marketing Platform
To improve your email marketing with CRM, you either need a CRM tool with an email feature or one that integrates with your email marketing platform of choice.
But it’s not just about that exact functionality. You also need to refer back to that list of your sales and marketing processes. Compare the functions in each option with your needs. How will each one look in your day-to-day? How will it help you better make sense of your customers and improve your selling process?
Taylor says, “A good CRM system that is integrated with your email marketing will tell the story of your interaction with that customer. You will be able to see what communication your company has had with that customer, which email messages they opened and what links they’ve clicked on inside that email.”
Essentially, that info that your CRM collects is designed to help you more effectively sell to people via email.
3. Use the Information from Your CRM to Better Market to Customers
A CRM tool can help you monitor all of your communications with customers — not just email. But when you integrate your email platform as well, you get all that info in one place.
So when a customer opens an email, clicks a link or responds to a message, that data is added to your CRM. This can help you segment customers and create more targeted offers instead of just blasting everyone on your list with the same messages. For instance, you can send out specific sales emails only to those who clicked on links in your previous email. Or make a special email-only offer to customers who have signed up for your list after buying a particular product.
One last point: Once you have this finely honed tool to help you segment your customers and target them more precisely, be sure to use it. It may be tempting to go back to blasting all the people on your list with sales messages to try to make your numbers for the month. Don’t give in! Let your CRM help mold your email marketing campaign and better relationships with your best leads and avoid damaging your brand by spamming followers indiscriminately.
1. Write out your sales process. Include all of the steps along with the most popular marketing activities that bring customers into your selling pipeline.
2. Use the right tool for the job. Find a CRM that either has a built-in email marketing feature or that integrates with the email marketing feature you already use.
3. Use your marketing process to focus your efforts. Segment customers into targeted groups within your CRM, based on your email interactions with them.