Acquiring customers is a prerequisite for business success. How efficiently you do it can make or break your business. In fact, customer acquisition cost is one of the metrics that can determine whether your business succeeds or fails, says KISSmetrics cofounder Neil Patel. Essentially, how much you spend on acquiring customers through marketing compared to the lifetime value of your customers determines whether or not your business stays profitable, as well as how profitable your business is. The lower your customer acquisition cost, the more profit you retain per customer.
One way to improve your bottom line is to automate you customer acquisition process through strategic use of customer relationship management (CRM) software. Here are four CRM strategies you can use to improve your customer acquisition efficiency and grow your profit margin.
One way CRM tools can improve your customer acquisition efficiency is by helping you focus your marketing. A robust customer relationship management tool with flexible functionality can help you gather information to more accurately pinpoint your target market so you can fine-tune your marketing and sales efforts. For instance, you can use CRM analytics tools to identify your best customers so you can analyze their demographic characteristics and buying patterns.
You can then share this information with your marketing team so they can fine-tune their campaigns to attract prospects who are more likely to buy. This will increase your conversion rate, helping you get a better return on investment for your marketing spend. CRM training can help your marketing and sales representatives learn how to use the nuances of CRM software and analytics for this type of advanced application.
You can further leverage targeted marketing by focusing your sales efforts on your hottest prospects. An efficient way to do this is to use your CRM system to create a lead scoring system. A lead scoring system assigns each of the leads in your database a score that represents their potential value to your business. This score represents factors such as how likely they are to buy from you, how soon they are likely to buy from you, and how much they are likely to spend. This enables you to prioritize your leads so you can assign leads to your sales team accordingly.
You can also use a lead scoring system to nurture prospects who are not ready to buy yet but may do so in the future after some follow-up targeted marketing. You can set up your CRM system to automate your lead scoring process and notify your sales managers and representatives when a hot lead comes in.
Optimized Sales Presentations
A CRM system can also help you acquire customers by optimizing your sales presentation. By analyzing the demographic profile and buying history of prospects in your database, your CRM analytics tools can determine what type of products an individual prospect is likely to buy, what types of benefits are most likely to appeal to them, and how far along they are in the sales cycle. Your sales representatives can then put this information to use by making a sales presentation customized for the individual prospect, increasing their odds of closing a sale or at least advancing a prospect to the next stage in the sales process.
On average, it takes over half a dozen touches to close a sale, according to the Direct Marketing Association. This implies that an efficient customer acquisition process depends heavily on the effectiveness of your follow-up procedures. A CRM solution can help you streamline your follow-up procedures through automation. You can use your CRM tool to track your contacts with your prospects so your sales representatives know how many times they’ve been contacted and what was discussed on the previous call. You can set a timetable for follow-up contacts and schedule automatic notifications to your prospects or sales representatives to ensure that your follow-up procedures are implemented. This will improve your customer acquisition rate as well as boost your repeat sales rate.
CRM software can help you focus marketing efforts on ideal prospects, prioritize the hottest sales leads, optimize sales presentations, and automate your follow-up process. Implementing these CRM strategies will help to attract more prospects, close more deals, acquire more customers, and earn more profit.
About the Author
Roy Rasmussen, coauthor of Publishing for Publicity, is a freelance writer who helps select clients write quality content to reach business and technology audiences. His clients have included Fortune 500 companies and bestselling authors. His most recent projects include books on cloud computing, small business management, sales, business coaching, social media marketing, and career planning.