5 Tips to Improve Your Customer Service

5 Tips to Improve Your Customer Service

Customer service, in its simplest terms, is defined as assistance and advice provided by a company to people who buy or use its products or services. But what is good customer service? Well, for one thing, it is extremely important. According to NewVoiceMedia, “U.S. companies lose more than $62 billion annually due to poor customer service,” (source: Vonage). Good customer service will be the difference between keeping your current customers and losing, not only this customer, but any future potential customers that hear about a bad customer service experience.

It shouldn’t take much to get your customer service up to par by trying the following 5 tips:

5 Reasons Why Your Sales Team Isn’t Using Your CRM

5 Reasons Why Your Sales Team Isn’t Using Your CRM

The good news is you’ve done all of your research, chosen a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software and implemented it successfully. The bad news is your sales team refuses to use it and, instead, are sticking with their old, trusty spreadsheets. According to some industry estimates, 40% of sales people were still using their old methods to store customer data as of just a couple of years ago. That’s a lot of wasted time and money.

There are several reasons your sales team may not be getting on board with your new CRM. Some highly probable reasons include a lack of knowledge, bad data, difficulty updating, lack of understanding and/or a willingness to change. If these could be issues in your organization, take a look at some of the below solutions.

Reason 1: Your sales representatives have limited technical expertise using the CRM

This could be as a result of simply not being technically savvy at all or they could just be more accustomed to a different CRM. The most effective way to combat such an issue is to provide solid user-related training to your sales teams. This can be achieved very effectively with sales webinars for the existing team and onboarding webinars for new members to get them up to speed when they join the company.

6 Ways to Improve Your Lead Generation Game in 2020 and The Role of CRM Software in It

6 Ways to Improve Your Lead Generation Game in 2020 and The Role of CRM Software in It

Lead generation is not new. In fact, it’s pretty much been around forever. However, lead generation has changed drastically throughout the years. To determine how best to improve your game in 2020, let’s start at the beginning by answering the question, what is a lead? A lead is basically anyone interested in your product or service that has the potential to become a customer. In order to create interest and convert a prospect to a lead to a customer, organizations create a marketing/sales funnel that works for them. Which leads to the next question, why is lead generation so important? Unless you are selling unicorns or found the cure for the common cold, you have competition out there. In order to be noticed by consumers, you need to get your name out there. So, what has changed? Lead generation used to be a matter of pushing your information out by advertising on large billboards, in newspapers, or sending mass emails. Now, potential customers will seek out what they are looking for in their products or services by searching online or receiving recommendations requiring organizations to generate leads through being found.

This new reality in lead generation causes a whole newfresh set of obstacles for marketers. For instance, there is a lack of high-quality information and data such as mailing lists to drive campaigns. Organizations also report a trend towards limited insights into target customers decreasing their ability to send information directly to high probability customers.

So, what do we do to increase lead generation in 2020? Below are several lead generation tips that could help you with your new strategy.

5 Questions to Ask Your CRM Solution Provider

5 Questions to Ask Your CRM Solution Provider

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) solutions are seemingly a dime a dozen.  However, in reality, there are many differences between various CRM solutions and not all of them may be a fit for your business.  Asking the right questions will help you determine if your current CRM is right for you or if you need to re-examine the perfect CRM solution for your organization.

Consider the following questions when determining the effectiveness of your current CRM.

1. Is your CRM just a CRM or an all-in-one CRM?

If your goal is simply to track and manage contacts, you may not need to look further.  On the other hand, you may be missing out on huge opportunities for increasing sales. Considering an all-in-one CRM could include sales enablement, marketing automation, and reliable customer service to bring your sales to the next level.

While determining if your CRM is right for you, consider sales enablement to go beyond contact management to help your sales team succeed by providing everything necessary before, during and after customer interactions.  Look for advanced features such as deals management to track deal stages and milestones, telephony integration, appointment scheduling, project management and gamification of your sales process to encourage collaboration and friendly competition, ultimately increasing sales.

Another all-in-one CRM feature that has become so important and has the potential to make your campaigns more effective is to include more automated and robust marketing features.  Options to consider are marketing automation with workflows and simplified drag-and-drop design capabilities, landing page builders with templates and mobile responsive design options, integrated social media, email marketing and tracking, and mobile marketing, including SMS and mobile messaging.

How to Create a Customer Journey Map: 5 Best Practices

How to Create a Customer Journey Map: 5 Best Practices

If you don’t feel that you have a lot of insight into your customers’ decisions, it may be because you don’t have it written down yet.

The solution: a customer journey map.

What is a customer journey?

A customer journey is a quick path for getting inside the minds of your customers. At its most basic, a customer journey map is a sequence of all the possible events that your customer goes through.

That journey takes an individual from their first interaction with your company until the completion of the transaction.

What is a customer journey map?

The goal of the customer journey map is really to get a holistic view of what the customer is going through from their point of view and really what it’s like for them on a personal level, that human level.

Kerry Bodine, Moz.com

You don’t know much about the customer journey until you can write it down. The map is where that happens. This map gives anyone who reads it instant access into what’s going on with a specific type of customer at any point.

By mapping out this journey, your company not only identifies the various aspects of its own sales funnel, but is then able to identify strengths and weaknesses along the way.

The Seven Best Practices to Better Branding

The Seven Best Practices to Better Branding

The importance of branding has never been higher than it is today. In fact, studies have shown that Millennials actually view their brand preferences as being nearly as integral to their identity as they do religious preferences. That level of commitment and evaluation cannot be understated!

This can be both a daunting and exhilarating realization—branding can make or break your business.  As such, it is more than just important to effectively build a brand; it is unequivocally vital. If you want to retain consumers—and you do, because repeat customers make up approximately one-fourth of all online purchases—then stellar branding is irreplaceable.

From first impressions to internal consistency to long-term loyalists, strong branding benefits every facet of your business. Like most things, though, building a brand easier said than done, especially in an increasingly competitive and complex world that relies heavily on internet-based customer engagement.

Leveraging a knowledge base to boost customer success

Leveraging a knowledge base to boost customer success

Customer support is critical to business and customer success. In fact, more and more companies are using it as a differentiating factor when trying to stand out in a crowded market. But even though it’s valued by customers, it’s not enough. They want answers immediately, and they want the option to help themselves. The best and most cost-effective, self-service method for customers is a knowledge base.

What is a knowledge base and why is it important?

A knowledge base is a centralized database of information that can be organized, stored and searched for future accessibility. Everyone, employees and customers alike, can use your knowledge base to help them find answers to any questions or concerns they might have regarding your product or service.

Knowledge bases include FAQs, troubleshooting guides, user manuals, product updates, how-to articles, and much more. And not only do that act as your 24/7 help desk, but when done right, they can free up your customer support reps’ time. So, instead of spending their time answering queries about minor problems, they can focus on solving more complex customer issues

Intrigued about creating a knowledge base for your business? Then, read below to find out how.

8 tips to reduce employee turnover: Why it’s so important

8 tips to reduce employee turnover: Why it’s so important

Reducing employee turnover should be a priority for any business. According to experts, it can cost twice an employee’s salary to recruit, hire and train a replacement. Turnover can also damage morale among your remaining employees, decrease productivity and make it harder to acquire new talent.

According to Work Institute, one in four employees (42 million U.S. workers) left their jobs in 2018 to go work for another organization. But companies with a culture that strongly values learning and team comradery have 30-50% higher employee engagement and retention rates than those that don’t.

Interview tips: How to find the perfect job candidate

Interview tips: How to find the perfect job candidate

Finding the perfect job candidate is no easy feat. On average, every corporate job opening attracts 250 resumes. Of those candidates, four to six are typically called in for an interview. But only one can walk away with the job. Talk about finding a needle in a haystack. A few interview tips can help.

It takes a lot of resources to find a new hire. Recruiters advertise on job sites, wade through seemingly endless resumes, conduct interviews, run background checks, call references, and more.

When it’s all said and done, the average cost-per-hire comes out to $4,129, and the average time it takes to fill an open position is 42 days, according to the Society for Human Resource Management’s (SHRM) Human Capital Benchmarking Report.

But the costs don’t stop adding up there. Experts estimate the cost of onboarding an employee is about $240,000. That includes recruitment ads and staff time, relocation and training fees for replacement hires, the negative impact on team performance, the disruption to incomplete projects, and more.

Hiring the wrong person can put a sizable dent in your revenue. Making the right choice from the start is crucial. In this article, we offer some interview tips to help you find the perfect job candidate for your company’s open positions.

Storytelling in marketing: Mastering this emerging trend

Storytelling in marketing: Mastering this emerging trend

There’s a Native American proverb that says, “Those who tell the stories rule the world.” Before humans developed systems for writing and reading, the only way to record our history was by passing down stories from generation to generation. Through storytelling in marketing, this tradition lives on.

Stories have been a key driver of change throughout human history – both for good and bad. Good storytelling can evoke emotion and serve as a compelling call-to-action.