Customer Relationship Management (CRM) System. They’ve evolved rapidly over the years and continue to improve and cater for the demands of small businesses every day.
I know you’ve probably run your business for X amount of time now, you’re managing just fine without a CRM system, but trust me, if you’ve got a pile of business cards on your desk, or emails sitting in your inbox that you’re going to follow up on just as soon as you remember, or leads you’ve forgotten about, then you really should consider one, for free!
Which CRM? I recommend the free version of Insightly CRM for any start-ups. Yes, there are options to improve the capability and functionality by paying for it, but you’ll be just fine on the free version until you’re ready to expand.
Once you’ve taken the step have a read of my four top tips to ensure the R in CRM is maintained.
- Add location tags to contacts, then when you’re next planning on visiting a different town / city on business you can pull off all contacts and see if they are free for a catch up!
- Export your LinkedIn connections to your CRM system. Remember, you’re only borrowing the space from LinkedIn, so it’s good housekeeping to regularly download your connections ‘just in case’. That way, if anything ever happens you’ve got everyone saved in a safe place.
- Free your mind. Pop emails that need a response into a task. Avoid leaving emails sitting in your inbox to deal with later, that’s daunting, messy and extra information you don’t need to keep in your head. Set a task reminder to reconnect / follow up with that prospect when you need to.
- Memory joggers. Utilise that ‘additional information’ box, that never gets filled, with any notes from conversations you’ve had in the past, so you can pick up where you left off, for example: partner’s name, children’s names, dislikes they may have shared, birthday, etc. Look cool and on top of things, but don’t go too mad on facts to avoid sounding creepy.
I’ve implemented a few cloud based CRM systems for clients and continue to work with regular clients to help maintain their records.
“I just wanted to say a huge thank you for your time on Skype! You were brilliant and I particularly liked the fact that you noted down all of my ‘Questions off at tangents’ and we came back to them at the end. Really comprehensive and I’m very excited to get my business on Insightly CRM asap!”
Kate T, Chartered Financial Planner
If you have any questions I’d love to hear from you: firstname.lastname@example.org