CRM – What is it?


CRM: Customer Relationship Management
Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia defines it as:

“Customer relationship management (CRM) is an approach to managing a company’s interaction with current and future customers. It often involves using technology to organize, automate, and synchronize sales, marketing, customer service, and technical support.”


Every week that passes I find myself asking: “How is it that smart, successful business people do not know about CRM?”

After which I remind myself that not everyone has been enveloped in technology for the past twenty plus years the way I have. The use of technology to support sales, marketing and other customer service and support functions has been around a long time. The transition of this technology to a mobile friendly environment has made it even easier and more accessible to businesses of all sizes.

As a busy business person, always being on the move and rarely having time to stop and eat unless you force yourself to make the time, you often need tools to help you do your daily tasks. Having these tools readily accessible no matter where you are can be invaluable. Take, for example, you just walked out of a very lucrative (potentially) business venture. You took many notes and you feel like your head is spinning.

Now, you have so much going through your mind about what just happened. This is the best time to write down everything that was said, done, requires follow up, etc. But wait, you need to set your calendar, tasks, reminders, and so on, to do this properly. In comes “CRM”. CRM, if implemented and used correctly, will save you time and money.

CRM allows you to import your contacts, create tasks and to-do lists, complete with follow ups, such as email and phone. Some CRM systems let you manage and change many features, while others restrict what you can do. CRM allows you to set reminders based on how frequently you want to be reminded and how you enter it into the system. You can email direct from most systems and in some case run your social media from it.

In the previous paragraph I mentioned “CRM allows you to set reminders based on how frequently you want to be reminded and how you enter it into the system”. This is significant, given that technology has helped us be better organizers. The sooner you can enter your notes into the system the more valuable the system will be. The accuracy of the data is best when entered immediately after a meeting or event. As time progresses you lose context of the meeting and your notes become vague.

Here are a couple quotes to help you remember the importance of data entry and management:

“The information you get from a CRM system is only as good as the information that has been entered into it”

“Garbage in, garbage out.”

As always, if you are uncomfortable with technology, not sure how to choose the right system for your business, do some research, hire someone to help you and take your time to make the right choice. It’s worth the effort and very rewarding as your business grows. You’ll be thankful you did.

Keep it Simple – We’ve all heard this before


“Keep it Simple” they say. 

That’s easy for them to say, they don’t understand the roller coaster ride of entrepreneurship or at least they have never experienced it first hand. But then again, why can’t we as entrepreneurs “keep it simple”?

How many of you actually have a written plan and are executing to that plan today? What are your top 3 goals for today? How do they help you achieve your plan? If you didn’t have an answer to the first two questions then the last one would have been moot.

Let me keep this post simple and pointed:

1. Have a plan.

2. Know and review your plan daily.

3. Set realistic goals to achieve your plan.

4. Measure your performance against the plan to ensure you are meeting your goals.

5. Have daily tasks and prioritize these tasks.

6. If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it – know your numbers and manage them, from sales to finance.

7. Know when to say “no”.

8. Define your target market, and go after it. Avoid distractions from sales that are not in your focused market – they will suck the life out of you.

9. Referrals – get some.

10. If this doesn’t seem simple to you, seek advice, hire a business coach and/or someone to take on this task on your behalf.

Take the time now to do this, start with the basics then add to it. Keep it simple and know when to seek help, don’t be too proud. This list can be made easy for you to complete through the help of an experienced individual.