CRM Helps Improve Marketing

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When Alan Siebel first coined the phrase “customer relationship management” (CRM) back in 1998 and it replaced the previous term “sales force automation” (SFA) it caused confusion that actually continues to a great extent today.

Some people thought it was just a name change and still consider CRM to be simply a replacement for SFA.  You use it to manage sales.  Forecast pipeline.  Record deals in progress.

But providers like Microsoft took the name very literally and began building solutions that would help companies manage relationships with their customers - every phase of the relationships with their customers.

Meanwhile, in another part of town…

At the same time that these integrated solutions were being developed, other software developers were busily creating applications that provided part of the solution.  For example, many created programs that would provide marketing automation.  For them, automating the marketing process involved making it faster and easier to get more messages out in front of more potential customers.  Once those potential customers showed interest they would be entered into a salesforce automation application, or perhaps the sales automation segment of a CRM, and tracked there from then on.

The Value of an Integrated Solution

As CRM solutions matured, their developers realized that they would have to compete with standalone applications in each of the phases of customer relationships.  The marketing part of their solution would compete with these marketing automation products, and their customer service management solutions would have to compete against standalone Field Service Automation (FSA) programs.  This would continue until their solutions performed better than the standalones, or customers came to appreciate the value of integrating marketing automation, sales automation, and service automation into one platform.

Or both!

In October 2012, Microsoft acquired a software company, MarketingPilot, that had produced an excellent standalone marketing automation product.  They have now integrated it into their CRM platform, calling it Microsoft Dynamics Marketing.  Add to that the acquisition of NetBreeze to create Microsoft Social Listening and you have an integrated solutions that brings together traditional marketing, new social interaction, and automates the entire process.  In the Microsoft Dynamics CRM “Spring Wave” Preview, Microsoft explains the value of an integrated solution:

“Marketing departments often end up fragmented by the technologies they employ to support their customer experience. Marketers use different tools to build different campaigns and programs across different aspects of the customer lifecycle. In fact, large companies have an average of 12-15 marketing tools. And they’re typically all disconnected. This creates a lot of inefficiencies inside the marketing organization, and perhaps more concerning, a disconnected and fragmented customer experience. How can your brand promise match your customer experience in this scenario?

With Microsoft Dynamics Marketing, our focus is to enable marketers of all types to create amazing customer experiences by enabling them to engage customers, build pipeline and demonstrate impact.”

These are all things marketers want and need to do

With the addition of Microsoft Dynamics Marketing and Microsoft Social Listening, Microsoft Dynamics CRM now offers a completely integrated marketing, sales, and service management solution that includes:

  • Drag and drop visual Campaign Designer
    Drive customer engagement with effective campaigns. An intuitive visual designer makes it easy for marketers to create multi-channel campaigns integrated with email marketing and social channels so you can generate highly qualified leads.
  • Lead lifecycle management
    Build your sales pipeline with qualified leads using a solution designed to manage the process of lead acquisition, scoring, distribution, and segmentation across marketing and sales.
  • Homepage
    Marketers can easily configure a personalized view of their key performance indicators and reports such as leads generated, email effectiveness, landing page opens, and budget performance.
  • Scalable Email Marketing
    Send highly personalized E-mail messages to drive improved open rates. Personalize the content per sender, recipient, subject & content allowing you to send fewer emails with greater business results.
  • Power BI for Marketing
    Visually analyze your data using predefined Power BI reports focusing on financials, lead performance, asset management and email deliverability.
  • Improved Sales & Marketing Connector
    The Dynamics Marketing Connector is new and improved, with easy configuration and a UI for data mapping. Users can configure data mapping to bring in important information on the contact and lead to assist in better lead scoring. Sales gets better quality leads as a result. Rich information means that reporting on lead pipeline and lead conversion is easily accessible in reports.
  • Microsoft Social Listening
    Microsoft Social Listening is a powerful new service that your organization can use to monitor social media channels like Twitter and Facebook. Use Microsoft Social Listening to track products, brands, competitors, and campaigns globally and in real time to gain a true understanding of your customers and your business across the social web.
  • Social Insights in Microsoft Dynamics CRM
    Bring the benefits of social listening to your Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online experience with Social Insights. Microsoft Social Listening visuals can be added your CRM dashboards and forms. These Social Insights charts and graphs help you identify buzz, trends and sentiment related to things like your customers, campaigns and competitors.

As you read this partial list you begin to realize just how much Microsoft has packed into Dynamics CRM.  The next step is to tailor it specifically to your company’s needs, and that’s where P2 Automation has the experience and the expertise to accelerate your process, share insight into best practices, and help you deploy the most effective marketing automation solution possible, one that integrates fully with your sales and customer service management systems!  Contact us Today!

by P2 Automation

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