What Is A CRM Database (Customer Relationship Management)

What Is A CRM Database (Customer Relationship Management)CRM, or customer relationship management, is a system that manages a company’s customer, client and prospect interactions. It’s technology used to organize your process for sales, marketing and customer service. It, obviously, has a database of information to do what you need to do. That’s database is the most important part of your CRM system.

A CRM database is a program of stored information that is relevant for your business. They are stand alone programs, but most allow the data to be merged into another program such as Outlook or Excel. A CRM database can be used for customer information, employee tasks, marketing plans, and a many other business functions.

Companies use the CRM database to gather information and details about their customers. This information goes beyond their name and contact information (address, phone and/or email) but also includes their needs and purchasing history. While it can also track employee sales and success rates, for customer retention and expansion, a CRM database is a gold mine.

A smart company will also incorporate their CRM database into their marketing and advertising plans. What you use the information that is collected for is only limited by your own imagination.

Lifecycle Marketing - Free Infusionsoft WorkbookOther types of information that can be gathered, and useful, are customer information like family size, ages, and location. Along with product purchases, you can also track warranties, service calls, customer support information and so forth.

The database can also track your employees as well, and then the information can be used to assign tasks, monitor sales and provide training. But their best use is marketing. Most CRM tools allow you to create reports, and you can tailor those reports to the data you collect, which then makes it easy to target your marketing to a group you know will be more likely to be interested in your products.

CRM databases have unlimited uses, so make sure you are using them!

the Marketing and Media Monsters recommend InfusionSoft as our CRM database of choice!

Hospitality Marketing – Do You Need Social Media

Hospitality marketing encompasses many different things like your website, direct mail, print and social media. Or do you really need social media marketing for your hospitality marketing?

Hospitality Marketing - Do You Need Social MediaHospitality marketing includes social locations like hotels, bars and restaurants. When you think about it, every hospitality venue is about getting together and sharing experiences with other. Social media is like that online.

Okay so you can understand that social media is, well, social, but doesn’t going social mean more work for you? The answer is yes, BUT… I hate to tell you this but people who come to your establishment are probably already talking about you on social media, with or without you!

This is the part of the new internet age that perplexes business owners the most. In the past only the business had the right to talk about the business. Now anyone can talk about your business on social sites like FourSquare, Instagram and Facebook, even if you don’t want them to.

So now you know that people are probably talking about you behind your back, the next thing is to take a peek and see what they are saying. You should be checking Facebook every day, Twitter, Google Plus, and the other social media a couple of times a week. You should dedicated pages set up for your business and start interacting with the people on social media.

Once you have a presence out there, you can start to actively ask people in your establishment to like, friend and check in on your social media sites. Make sure your servers, front desk, bartenders and staff ask people to check in or comment on how their experience was!

Lastly, it is imperative that you pick one person to be your in-house social media point person (and you may be surprised to hear we don’t think it should be your youngest employee because they “get” social media). We recommend it be the most social person on staff, the one who knows all about what is going on throughout the building!

Direct Sales and Affilate Marketing – Relationship Marketing Advertising

Direct Sales and Affilate Marketing – Relationship Marketing AdvertisingIt is natural to feel overwhelmed whenever you have any sort of business venture including direct sales or affiliate marketing. You get excited, enthusiastic, and very energetic. This normally happens as you have registered for a Relationship Marketing opportunity. However, there comes the time that all the excitement and other overwhelming emotions die down. You are faced with the realization that the moment to get started has come. The question is, how do you get on with a Relationship Marketing business? What are the elements and factors to consider in achieving success?

First Things First

Before you count your blessings, you must first come up with a solid plan on how you must get on with a Relationship Marketing business. Plan your steps. Know the requirements. Come up with specific scripts that will grab potential clients’ attention and motivate them to make a decision. Another factor that you should focus on is the advertising concerns of your Relationship Marketing business.

Some Relationship Marketing people commit the mistake of incorporating the wrong steps in advertising their products or services. Don’t make the same faults if you don’t want to fail in this endeavor. Take a look at the following tips to boost your own Relationship Marketing advertising.

Tip #1. Refrain from using the name of your company or specifying your product in your advertising campaign. There are a lot of Relationship Marketing firms that forbid their affiliates from using their names in the course of advertising.

Tip #2. Focus on your goal. Your main goal is not about brand awareness. Your main concern is to build target leads, grab their attention, and let them take the opportunity. Your bottom line is to emphasize briefly what your product and service can generally do to benefit them.

Tip #3. Don’t give too much information. Tease them so that they will contact you for further information. Don’t ever spoil the magic and appeal of advertising.

Reasons Why You should be Careful with Income Opportunity Advertisements

Generally, Relationship Marketing companies that deal with income generating opportunities want to be very careful and discreet when it comes to their ads. There are a few vital reasons and they are:

Credibility. When you advertise an income opportunity but the company itself is not doing well, then the issue on credibility arises. This lessens the chances of people joining your network.

Sustainability. This is yet another issue to settle especially when your members are those who are only after the financial gain. They are likely to stick with you because they want their pay checks. The secret to Relationship Marketing success is the bondage that attaches the members to the products and their commitment to facilitate the growth of the business.

Notice-ability. There are hundreds of Relationship Marketing companies out there to do business. You should offer something special. Mention it in your ads. Be sure that your announcement is catchy and is sure to stand out.

Advertising medium. Where should you place your ads? There are numerous mediums to use. You may opt for trade journals, pay-per-click, blogs, direct mail, email, radio, social networks, post cards, newsletters, and many more.

The way you design your Relationship Marketing advertisements determine the leads that you may gather and eventually the monetary reward that you will enjoy in the future.

Hence, take note of these important tips!

Business Services Marketing – Don’t Be a Victim of Social Media Disaster

Business Services Marketing - Don't Be A Social Media DisasterSocial media is essential for your service based business. It gives you a direct link to your customers and helps you find new ones. However, if your social media presence isn’t managed the right way, it can be disastrous for your company’s image. Here are a few of the most common disasters and ways you can avoid them.

Slow Response

Social media works well to help establish your good reputation but it can also destroy it. It’s a platform where your customers have a voice. What if one of them is unhappy with your products, services or practices? They can publish their complaint so that everyone can see it.

Damage control isn’t a big deal; it’s just part of social media. It’s not disastrous when someone complains about your company, but it is when you respond too slowly or don’t respond at all. Monitoring your social media sites is a 24/7 responsibility. When someone complains, you need to be there to address the issue.

Responding the Wrong Way

You can easily turn a slight bump in the road into a complete wreck by responding the wrong way to comments. If someone is rude or insulting, you may be tempted to respond negatively or be defensive. Even if the comment is completely out of line, a negative response makes your business look bad. Your response should always be positive and constructive.

You’ve probably noticed that you can simply delete comments that you don’t like. This can actually be more disastrous. To people who saw the comment before it was deleted, this looks very bad. You should only delete comments that are obscene, spammy, or excessively rude.

Selling, Selling and Selling

While the overall purpose of your social media presence is to boost your business, one of the biggest mistakes businesses make is to overly self- promote. If you do this, you’re misunderstanding the real purpose of social media. Your customers are there to socialize, meet people, and share common interests. They’re not interested in being marketed to. If you blatantly promote your business too much, you’ll lose them. You also risk having people complain to the whole world about your social media tactics. Instead, think of social media as a way to build a stronger connection between your business and your customers.

The Wrong Spokesperson

To handle all of your social media tasks and maintenance, you should assign someone from your company to be the manager. Try to choose someone who is social media savvy and has experience on those types of sites. Keep in mind that one of the deadliest mistakes you can make is assigning the wrong person to this post. The wrong person is someone who might make the job too personal, talking about himself too much, or might make political, religious or other touchy comments. Your social media manager should know that his or her job is to represent the company in a positive way, and that’s all.

Social Media Disaster Prevention

The key to managing social media disasters effectively is to have a solid plan. Long before a disaster strikes, make sure that you know exactly how to handle it. Talk to everyone in your company who is involved in social media and make sure they understand the protocols and rules.

Auto Industry – Do Direct Mail Postcards Work For Getting Leads

Do Direct Mail Postcards Work for Getting Leads?You may wonder to yourself, do direct mail postcards work for getting leads in your auto industry marketing?

Years ago, the Internet came along and changed everything in the marketing world. Marketers used to rely on tried and true outbound marketing methods like cold calling, but now the Internet offers all kinds of opportunities for inbound marketing. Many believe that the Internet has made traditional marketing methods obsolete. However, it’s not time to toss them out the window just yet. Direct mail postcards still work if you know how to use them effectively.

Qualified Leads

If done right, direct mail postcards get you qualified leads that are primed to buy. The traditional method is to offer customers a freebie or discount if they’ll complete a quick survey. Pre-qualifying through direct mail postcards
is important for creating an effective sales funnel. You cast the net wide, sending out postcards to every address you’ve got, and the replies you get narrow the field down to qualified leads only.

The Value of Your Offer

What you offer in terms of your freebie or discount needs to be valuable to the customers. Even the five minutes it takes to fill out your survey can be a hassle for them, and the freebie sweetens the deal. Dollar value isn’t the only consideration here. You really need to know your target market and know the kinds of vehicles and services they want from you. If you can match them to the product they want, you’ll do well. Of course, you’ll get to know your customers better through your direct mail efforts.

Following Up

The reason lots of businesses have thrown the postcard method out the window is that they don’t know how to follow up. They give their customers one or two follow-ups, and then they’re surprised at how little response they get. What you need is a follow-up system that keeps in contact with the customers. The system also needs to be designed so that it runs on autopilot in order to save you labor.

Outbound marketing is more labor-intensive than inbound, which is where you create your content and let customers come to you. But the major advantage of outbound marketing is that it’s consistent. If you do it the same way each time, you’ll get the same results, guaranteed. Your follow-up system should do this for you.

Make It Easy

Another key to making direct mail postcards work is to make it easy for the customers to respond. If there’s anything vague or complicated involved, they’ll ignore it. Think of all the noise and static people experience every day (not to mention postcards from other companies, many of which are junk mail). The communication you expect from customers should be as simple as possible.

The Beginning of a Relationship

It’s important to look at the long-term when you use direct mail. Don’t look at it as one transaction but as the beginning of a relationship. Ideally, you should be following up with them for years to come. The goal is for your business’s brand to become a part of your customers’ lives. If you can achieve this, selling your vehicles and services to them becomes effortless.