Getting to Know You, Getting to Know All About You

Retaining your most valuable assets during a recession


Every business needs a loyal customer base – customers who will keep coming back to you – through thick and thin. And above all, you need to retain your most highly valued and profitable customers. That’s why it’s pertinent for your company to ask, and find out, what drives your customers’ loyalty?

To help answer this question, you will need to find out who your customers are, what they want/value from you and what drives them to come back to you time and time again. In a recent article on the website[1], an example was cited of how a major French supermarket chose to keep selling a premium product, despite its recent fall in sales, because an analysis of their customers’ behaviour from their CRM system revealed that it was their most valued and loyal customers who were the main purchasers of the product. Instead of risking the loss of these essential customers, they chose to make a loss on the premium product in hopes of gaining sales from elsewhere.

A CRM solution enables you to focus on improving loyalty by making it easy for you to capture, analyse and utilise relevant customer data. One of the most popular areas that a CRM solution can assist you with is developing and maintaining a customer loyalty programme. By using the data you collect on your customers you can analyse their specific preferences to design discounts or offers that match their needs. The marketing functionality of a CRM solution helps you to easily create targeted marketing campaigns that are tailored to your customers’ requirements and give a personal touch.

According to the latest Gartner marketing report, “The Top Six CRM Marketing Processes for a Cost-Constrained Economy,” by Kimberly Collins, one of the main marketing activities during a recession is to safeguard the customers you have.  As we all know, it’s much less expensive to retain your existing customer than to acquire new ones.  With a CRM system, you can determine the value of your customers and understand customer churn.  Early detections of reasons for customers to churn can allow you to take action before the customer walks away.  Companies with an effective customer retention programme will more likely reduce churn from their profitable customers.

By focusing on your customer base and enhancing customer loyalty, you are leveraging your most crucial assets, making your marketing programmes accountable and driving notable results during tough economic conditions.

Imagine your top sales rep calls your best customer to sell him a new product. What he doesn’t know is that the customer initiated a service ticket last week which was not responded. Needless to say the call goes badly.

Same Customer different scenario- This time your sales rep and your customer service rep know everything about the customer and the health of the account. You know how much he has bought over the years, how timely his payments are and how seldom he raises issues. So they satisfactorily resolve his concerns and boosts his confidence in your company. And as a result, he pays in timely manner and agrees to purchasing the new product.

Does the second scenario sounds impossible? Not so, This is the power and effectiveness of CRM. By integrating your Sales, Marketing and Customer Service Functions, CRM makes it easier for everyone inside your company to work together and share critical information. Sales, marketing and customer service teams gain the tool they need to find new customers, close sales faster and build lasting, more profitable relationships.

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