A lot of talk in the CRM world for the past decade or more has been around self-service and essentially taking phone-based communications out of a lot of the CRM processes in an organization.
This is a good thing in a lot of areas, and for a number of cost cutting and convenience reasons.
But I think sometimes the “C” in CRM gets lost in a lot of scenarios. Sure, sales agents call prospects all the time – and we all know sometimes to the point of annoyance. It’s part of the sales process. But for you business owners out there – ask yourselves – how often do sales people call on customers AFTER the sale?
How often do you call on customers?
When a customer has an issue – the most important thing is to solve that issue – as fast and as completely as possible. This will bring up a number of touch points. But even phone-based engagements here are going to be purpose-driven. And support cases are never a good time to simply ask open-ended questions to your customers.
But in the constant chase for new revenue and in our optimization-minded organizations – how often do we simply pick up the phone and call on random customers to get a glimpse of the real story behind customer satisfaction?
Sure, we can pass the buck and say “isn’t that why we monitor social media? To keep a finger on the pulse of the customer?” That’s true – but I would argue that again, many people tweeting about your brand have just had either a very bad (usually) or very good (less often a driver) experience.
Wanna find out how that middle ground of customers (usually the largest set) is doing? Pick up the phone.
Remember, technology is but one third of the CRM total package. And the people involved (your customers) are the most important. Show that your relationship is based on a personal relationship, and you might be surprised at what you learn.