How CRM apps can improve your business

Most businesses in Singapore still operate CRM on their desktop computers. If you are doing the same, you are not maximising the power of your CRM software. To make the best use of your CRM, you need to use it on your mobile device. All you need is to download a CRM app on your Smartphone or tablet. That way, you can access, collect, and analyse customer data on the go from almost anywhere. Take a look at how you can use CRM apps to improve your business, from building brand loyalty or even increasing your stagnant sales.

Improves customer service

Today’s customers are busy. Customers expect quick and excellent service from your sales executives. With CRM apps, your salespeople can respond to the customer immediately, in real time. Moreover, they can access customer data instantly on their mobile device, using CRM apps. This means that they have instant access to relevant customer information that can help them provide a better customer experience.

Improves data accuracy

Maintaining CRM data accuracy is a challenge for many businesses. The main cause for data errors stems from not entering customer data in real time. If your sales team is not connected with the CRM round the clock, they will not be able to enter customer data into the system when they are working on the go. They will probably keep hand-written notes and later update the data into the system from office. This process is time-consuming and increases the likelihood of data errors. Thankfully, CRM apps help resolve this problem. With CRM, your salespeople can enter and update customer information in real time, which reduces the scope for inaccurate data entry.

Boosts productivity

Mobile CRM apps allow for more flexibility. Now your sales and marketing team can utilise the dead time minutes if they want. For instance, they can analyse customer data while waiting at the airport, during lunch breaks, meetings, and even while returning home from the office. There is no need to wait until you reach the office because you have easy access to data anytime. Advanced CRM apps like QuickDesk allow you to gather, organise, and update client information within seconds.    You can set goals, track activity, import or export contacts, and create invoices quickly and easily. All these help boost your productivity.

Improves collaboration

CRM software has been very effective in collecting and analysing customer data for better decision making. Now with the use of CRM apps, you can move a step further in that direction. Your managers can know what is going on the field. They can track activities of sales and marketing executives, assign new tasks, get reports – all in the real time. This helps improve collaboration among your team members.

If you want to make the most of mobile CRM, consider using the right CRM app. Simplified solutions like QuickDesk available on iTunes and Play store, allow you to get the best benefits of CRM.

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Top reasons businesses should adopt mobile CRM

Singapore has the highest internet penetration rate of 80 percent in South East Asia and it has the fastest mobile penetration rate of 152 percent throughout the world. It is no wonder that such a tech-savvy country is leading by examples when it comes to utilising mobile CRM. If your business is using conventional CRM software, it is time to go mobile. That way, you can get access to real-time customer data anytime and anywhere. Here are some major reasons why you should take the mobile CRM leap.

More productivity

Using mobile CRM is a chance for you to increase your productivity. Think about it. Your salespersons will get access to CRM around the clock and from any location as long as they are connected to the internet. Does that not help them to be more productive? Now, they can use the multimedia and search features of CRM software whenever and wherever they want. They can quickly check details about a customer in their mobile phones or tablets before interacting with the customer. Knowing more about a customer would help your sales team to sell more. That brings us to the next benefit of using mobile CRM.

More sales

According to a recent survey among sales managers, around 75 percent of the respondents said that they noticed an increase in sales after using mobile CRM. If not for anything else, you should use mobile CRM for getting more sales.

Access to real-time data

Some companies allow their employees to work from home. Also, most salespersons or marketing professionals today need to work away from the office at least for some hours almost daily. When someone is working away from office, they may not have the latest customer information. They would have access to the information only after returning to the office. With mobile CRM, you do not have this issue. You can integrate the mobile CRM with cloud and hence get instant access to real-time customer data.

Faster delivery

Another benefit of using this mobile tool is that it helps improve your turnaround time for delivery. For instance, let’s say a salesperson receives an order on the go, earlier he would have to reach office or make a call to inform the production or delivery department about the new order. Now they can just enter the information in mobile CRM software, and the messages go immediately to the delivery team. That way, you can save a lot of time and expedite the delivery process.

A step towards mobile workforce

With more and more companies in Singapore shifting to a mobile workforce, mobile CRM could be a useful tool for most businesses. With simplified CRM software like QuickDesk available on iTunes and Play Store, the business now can allow more employees to work from home or on the go. This would also help business save money on office rents and related expenses. Also, employees who are working for your company from home may fall into the category of freelancers, which would help evade employment taxes to a large extent.

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ICV Singapore: Improving Your Business with ICV Grant

What is ICV (Innovation Capability Voucher)?

The Innovation and Capability Voucher helps Singapore businesses to improve and upgrade their operations and processes.

This can be in the form of hiring a consultant or purchasing a pre-existing integrated solution.

In both cases, the service or integrated solutions provider must be pre-qualified by SPRING Singapore and hence listed on their website, and after making their purchase, they can apply for the voucher and get their grant reimbursement back.

Step 1: Is My Company eligible for ICV?

In order for a company can be eligible for the ICV Grant, it needs to meet the following criteria:

  • It must be registered and operating in Singapore
  • Have at least 30% of its shares owned by Singaporeans or Permanent Residents
  • Have group annual revenue of less than $100 million or less than 200 employees

Step 2: Understand what can be claimed for ICV

Each SME is entitled to a maximum of eight (8) vouchers, each worth $5000. These vouchers can be claimed in the form of (1) Consultancy Projects and (2) Integrated Solutions.

(1) Consultancy Projects (Up to 2 vouchers can be claimed per capability area)

  1. Financial Management
  2. Human Resources
  3. Innovation
  4. Productivity

When hiring a consultant under this scheme, they can be reassured of the quality of the service as SPRING Singapore pre-qualifies service vendors, and they can have an idea on the deliverables from the vendors as SPRING Singapore lists the project scopes on their website.

(2) Integrated Solutions (max 2 vouchers)

An SME can also make use of the ICV Voucher by purchasing a pre-existing “Integrated Solution” and implementing it in their company’s workflow. SPRING Singapore also has a list of Integrated Solutions as well as a list of provider companies on their site.

Step 3 Know Your Business, Your Goals, and Your Needs

In order to plan for the best use of these ICV Vouchers, it is important to consider the following questions:

  • Out of the four key areas (Financial Management, Human Resources, Innovation and Productivity), which is placed at highest priority?
  • What are your company’s strengths and weaknesses?
  • What is your company’s source of income?
  • How is its financial situation?
  • What is this company’s plan for expansion?

Use these questions as a starting point to brainstorm and shortlist which service providers you want to engage. And look through the Project Scope and Deliverables on Spring Singapore’s website to determine if what they have is a fit for your company.

For instance, if your company’s main source of income is designing and manufacturing new technology and products, it should focus on the capability area of Innovation.

If your company is looking to expand and hire more people while still maintaining healthy cashflow, it should put its priority on the areas of Financial Management and Human Resources.

Step 4: Determine how and where to spend the ICV Vouchers

Do your research on vendors for Consultancy Projects and the Integrated Solutions.

Shop around before determining which is the best fit for your company. Service Providers for consultancy projects must agree to conduct the project for your company before you can apply for ICV. In some instances, the service provider or Integrated solutions provider can assist you in applying for the ICV Grant.

ICV applications will then be processed within 6 weeks and companies who have succeeded in their application will be notified by email.

These are the 4 simple steps in making the most out of the ICV Grant from Spring Singapore. Remember that no two companies are exactly alike and thus the types of services or solutions that would be the most effective for each situation will differ.

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5 CRM mistakes to avoid in upcoming 2017

Customer relationship management (CRM) software helps a business acquire and retain customers. Within the past few years, there has been a massive adoption of CRM in Singapore. However, companies still make mistakes when implementing CRM software. As a business owner, you should be aware of the best practices in CRM implementation, as well as common mistakes and how to avoid them.

Here are 5 CRM mistakes you need to avoid in 2017.

Unnecessary integration of CRM and ERP

If your business is growing fast, it would be a good idea to integrate your CRM software with Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) tools. However, this tactic is not suitable for all businesses. For start-ups or businesses with a low sales volume, CRM-ERP integration may not be worth the time and money. Until you can maximize and increase your sales, it may not be necessary to integrate your CRM and ERP systems.

Using price as the determining factor for choosing a CRM software

There is nothing wrong in doing a price comparison when choosing a CRM solution for your business. However, the price is not the only factor to consider. By picking the option with the lowest price, you may compromise on features and end up choosing a tool that does not have all the features that your business requires.

Try opting for simplified CRM software such as QuickDesk that comes with a wide variety of features including DNC filtering, customized emails, lead and task management. It is important to do adequate research, think about all your current and future requirements and find a solution that meets them.

Ignoring social media

One major mistake that companies make is failing to integrate social media with their CRM software. By the end of 2017, there would be around 2.67 billion social media users globally. Within the many customer interactions on social media channels, there is a goldmine of valuable information and insights that you can use to make more informed decisions. If you do not use your CRM software to collect information about existing and potential customers from Facebook, Twitter and other social media channels, you will miss out on a prime chance to gather business intelligence, which will reduce your ability to make good business decisions. While many companies are still using emails and phone calls as their primary modes of communication, this trend is likely to change within the next few years.

Importing incorrect, outdated data

It is important to import complete and updated company data into your CRM system. If you are planning to deploy a new CRM system, you should ensure that the data being imported into the new system is 100 percent accurate and up-to-date. Without the right information, your CRM software will not be effective. It can even be misleading if you use the incorrect information from your CRM system to make decisions.

Not checking for scalability

As your business grows, so does your need to obtain more insightful customer data. When you are buying a CRM solution, you should check that the software not only fulfills your current needs, but is also able to meet your future requirements. Simply put, you need a scalable solution that can be upgraded with more features that you may need in future.

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How to Use CRM to improve your marketing strategy

While CRM is basically a sales tool, it can also be used to strengthen your marketing strategy. If you want to increase sales your already stagnant sales, you first need to improve your marketing. With the CRM software, you can monitor your customers’ behaviour through different stages of the sales cycle. This helps you design a customer-focused strategy for your next marketing campaign.

Here are four ways you can use CRM to improve your marketing strategy.


Identifying gaps in sales cycle

CRM helps you measure the impact of each marketing activity in your sales cycle. You can find out when a lead turned into a prospect and how long it took for the sales team to convince the prospect to finally make a purchase. This information helps you identify the strengths and weaknesses of your existing marketing campaigns, especially the gaps in your sales cycle. Once you identify the gaps in the sales process where most of your leads or prospects lose interest, you can take the necessary steps to keep your prospects more engaged at those stages of your sales cycle.


Sending personalized messages

It is important to divide your customer base into segments and obtain customer data for each segment. As your business grows, it becomes much more difficult to maintain a structured database of each customer segment. Advanced CRM solutions like QuickDesk help you organize and segment your database according to the information that has been entered by your sales team. Without proper segmentation of your customer data, you may end up sending a generic message to all customer groups. With CRM, you can collect and segregate customer data into different segments. This helps you send personalized messages to your prospects, which improves your marketing effectiveness.

For instance, you can use CRM to find out whether top-level management professionals respond more frequently to e-books or newsletters. For each customer segment, you can also find out which of your marketing activities are the most effective and use these insights to plan your next marketing campaign.


Tracking ROI of your marketing campaigns

When you have a limited budget for marketing, you need to make sure that the amount spent on each of your marketing campaigns is well utilized to produce results. It is difficult to measure results without a system in place to track your ROI. With CRM software, you can monitor the results for each of your marketing campaigns and check whether they are generating enough returns. If not, you should revise your marketing strategy accordingly to boost the effectiveness of your campaigns.


Allocating budget for marketing campaigns

Without tracking and reviewing results, you may end up allocating too many resources to campaigns that do not generate adequate returns. Allocating budget for your marketing campaigns is not an easy task. You need to have a clear picture of which marketing activities creating maximum results and which are underperforming. By using CRM software, you can gain a clearer view on the performance of your campaigns, and can then make an informed decision about how to allocate your resources to various campaigns.

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Enterprise Sales Meetup (B2B Sales Techniques) – Key Takeaway Points

Last Wednesday, the Enterprise Sales Meetup brought together three panelists from the enterprise sales industry to share on their B2B Sales techniques. The theme of the night was on “Selling to the C-Suite” and here are the key learning points from the speakers:


1. Be Authentic, Build Trust and Support

Rosalina Chai

Rosalina shared the importance of being authentic, as “the messenger may sometimes be as important as the message“. This is because the key decision makers are not only looking at the quality of the product, but of the salesperson themselves.

She shares her own experience of being a C-level executive herself and explained that she would rather delegate the buying decision to the unit head (key decision maker for the specific issue).  She also mentions that C-level executives tend to be older in age, and thus instead of selling them on the specific details of the technology, it would be wiser to sell a vision of what the product or service can do for their company.

In addition, it is important to build trust and rapport with the people that you meet, so that they are willing to overlook small slip-ups and instead listen to you and learn more about your product.

2. Map out Customer Behaviour and the Buying Process

Aju Marjani

Aju spent 16 years doing enterprise sales, and he too emphasizes the importance of human relationships, placing it above systems, processes and products in terms of importance.

In the past, after gaining experience in selling a product, one can map out a buying cycle of a customer and track where the leads are at a current point in time, as well as whether they should continue following up with the lead.

However, in the digital era, information about different products and services are readily available, and potential customers’ behaviours have also changed. They may want to look into competitors’ products, or do more research on their own, and that adds to the complexity of the buying cycle.

3. Tailor Your B2B Sales Pitch

It is important to bear in mind 3 points in any B2B sales situation:

  1. The problems or issues the company faces

    • Seek to understand the problem that they are facing
    • Note down their pain points and explain how your product can be the solution
  2. The context of the organization

    • There are many stakeholders involved in deciding on and implementing a solution
    • Thus it is critical to have buy-in from these people as well
  3. What sales content is communicated at each level

    • Be aware that reaching the C level is not critical to making a successful sale.
    • Connecting with the stakeholders and committee involved in the issue can be sufficient to close a sale


4. How does one win a C-level executive to your side?

Joaquin (Jack) Arambulo

It is important to seize an opportunity to connect with C-level executives when given the chance. They can help make your sales process smoother, and in addition, give you an advantage over competitors who have not made a connection to a board member.

Jack gave a few key B2B sales tips:

  • Ask questions and listen instead of giving statements.
  • Focus on the value that you can bring
  • Sell the vision of the product or service

In conclusion, the key factors of conducting B2B sales is to understand that C-level executives are not the be all and end all of the enterprise sales process, and that it is important to connect with the other stakeholders in the company and help them solve their problems. Doing this can also lead to a successful sale.

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Top reasons to integrate CRM with marketing automation tools

Marketing automation is the latest marketing trend. It allows your business to automate important marketing tasks, including list management, web analytics, multi-channel promotion and email marketing.

While more businesses are using marketing automation, not all of them are integrating it with their customer relationship management (CRM) systems. In fact, some companies expect their CRM to do most of the marketing automation tasks. However, unlike marketing automation, CRM systems generally do not provide end-to-end automated services.

To get the best of both worlds, you should integrate your CRM and marketing automation systems. Here’s why:

They complement each other

To obtain more customers, you need to generate and nurture leads. Automating the process would help boost your efficiency, and this is possible with a successful integration of your CRM software and marketing automation. CRM helps gather customer data, while marketing automation extracts valuable business intelligence insights from this data.

Strengthen relationships with potential customers – even before they make a purchase

It takes weeks or months to turn a prospect into a customer. During that time, you need to keep in touch with your prospects and engage them with useful content. It is also important for sales people to enter useful information about their prospect into the CRM system. While CRM helps you identify your potential customers, marketing automation can help you strengthen the relationship with your prospects during the early stages of a buying process.

Identifies good leads

Not all leads eventually become customers. With integrated CRM and marketing automation tools, you can rank your leads in order of their potential.

Here’s how it works: marketing automation can analyse customer data collected by the CRM software and assign scores to every lead. You can then prioritise your sales leads by ranking them in order of importance. With this information, your sales team can convert the leads with the most potential first.

Send customised messages

When you integrate your CRM with marketing automation, it will help you run personalised marketing campaigns. Your customers are more likely to respond to a customised message than a generic one. With CRM, your marketing team can get the relevant information to create customised messages easily, without having to spend hours on the process.

Shorten the sales cycle

Time is money for any business. With marketing automation tools, you can analyse your CRM data and find ways to obtain new customers more efficiently. By shortening the sales cycle, your business can boost profit significantly.

Improves business decisions

By integrating marketing automation and CRM software, you can measure the results of your various marketing efforts, leverage these insights and channel resources well to make more informed business decisions.

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