CRM: Do You Even Know What It Is?

Over the past 2 days I’ve been attending the third Infusion CRM User conference. This annual gathering of Infusion staff, resellers and most importantly customers helped me really understand what CRM is all about. I’ll share some things I learned with you now, and share with you more about CRM in subsequent posts.
CRM is not a product as Brent Leary, host of Business Technology Radio told me.
Businesses think they “buy” CRM. But you can’t buy CRM. CRM is a process, it’s a way of life, it’s how you structure your business processes. It’s about work flow.
We heard from Darcy Juarez, of Dentist Profits (see a video of her speaking here) about her experience in adding CRM to Dentist Profits (a company helping dentists attracting paying, staying and returning patients).


I thought that Darcy might have been a tech guru or at least an expert marketer. She’s not. She’s a regular person who simply knew she needed to implement a solution that would enable her to NOT hire more staff (in fact maybe even reduce staff) and enable her to do more with less – while attracting new customers to Dentist Profits.
Although, I’m focusing on Infusion CRM in this post, but the concepts I’m sharing with you can apply to any CRM product.
Darcy took the time, weeks of time in fact, to go through training to learn how to use the product (in this case Infusion CRM). Training is VERY important.
The other important thing we learned is that when implementing CRM, is that you don’t need to do everything at once.
Start small – with maybe ONE marketing campaign. Don’t try to do everything at once. The second thing we learned was that not trying to go back and correct all your existing records, but just going forward could be one of the best ways to get started as well.
Going forward means that instead instead of trying to import, for example, every bit of customer information, you might want to just import names, emails and company names. As you do new marketing campaigns your CRM software could assist with building a new profile of customers. Discuss with your CRM specialist how they best recommend to do this.
Look for my next post about CRM in a few days.
I would really appreciate your comments and insight about CRM.

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Ramon Ray, Editor & Technology Evangelist, Smallbiztechnology.com . Editor and Founder, Smart Hustle Magazine Full bio at http://www.ramonray.com . Check him out on Google Plus, Twitter or Facebook

One thought on “CRM: Do You Even Know What It Is?

  1. Kris

    I really enjoyed reading your post. I personally work in Infusion for all of my clients, and you are right it is not a product it is how you structure your business processes. Some of my newer clients think they need to jump right in. This is not the case starting slow and taking your time implementing, and learning the features is key. In my opinion Infusion is the best crm I have come across. Although there is a learning curve, once you have all processes in place your business will just flow. I can’t wait for your next post.

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