If you haven’t heard the term CRM before, it stands for Customer Relationship Management system. Simply put, this is an online system that keeps track of all your client/customer data, and helps you nurture those relationships.
A good CRM is your calendar, your email service, your project management tool, your client database and your personal assistant all rolled into one! It can do wonders for your overall organization, and your client experiences.
If that sounds like exactly what you need, here are tips on exactly how to optimize your CRM experience and optimize your brand in turn.
CRMs as a One-Stop Organization Shop
Balancing all the creative and analytical work that keeps your business running is hard enough most days. Then you add meetings into the mix, plus answering emails and managing new client inquiries (and optimizing your website to bring in more inquiries), and it all gets overwhelming fast.
This is where investing in a CRM will really save you, especially if right now you are handling everything. As Táve puts it, their CRM “organizes your leads & jobs all in one place so you stay on track, streamline your systems, and make more money.” Make more money? Check. More time to focus on what you love (which is probably not filing and following up)? Check check.
We recommend finding a CRM that helps you with most, if not all, of these items as they apply to your business:
- Meeting and call reminders
- Create client profiles with information and meeting notes
- Track leads / potential new clients and move them through your funnel
- Records of payments from clients
- Email templates
- Automated workflows – could be for project management or for client gifting reminders, as we’ll cover next!
One thing to remember: even the best CRM can only give back what you put into it. It can’t remind you of a meeting, or give you client information that you forgot if you never added that information in the first place.
CRMs as a Client Experience Tool
While delivering an amazing product is certainly at the center of good client experience, your ability to go above and beyond for people is what makes a great client experience.
We absolutely love this quote from photographer and Customer Service Lead at Táve, Nicole Hoffman, on the importance of a well-rounded client experience.
“As a wedding photographer, the service I provide for my clients goes way beyond just showing up on the wedding day. I often connect with them in-person a few times through meetings and when we get together for their engagement session. Staying in touch throughout the process is very important to show my clients that I’m thinking about them and I’m here to help.”
Make sure you’re always communicating next steps and following up with your clients by tracking your interactions with them in your CRM. Then make going above and beyond part of your workflow by setting yourself reminders to send them gifts or other unexpected surprise and delight tactics!
We recommend blending these two types of strategies:
- Structured workflow: you always send a booking gift to say thank you, or a gift to celebrate the one-year anniversary of your client’s wedding
- Situational spontaneity: if a client mentions they are feeling stressed, send them some tea and essential oils on the spot with a note wishing them some relaxation time
However you chose to work client surprise and delight into your business, a CRM can help you stay on top of it by keeping track of all your data and reminding you exactly when to act!
So, what’s your favorite CRM? Do you use it for client gifting? Share your experiences with us!