Email marketing and CRM: The bigger picture

Email marketing and CRM: The bigger picture

One swallow doesn’t make a summer – any more than one goal wins a season, or one performance makes a maestro.

Intelligent conclusions are based on patterns of information and behaviour, not random, one-off events. Science relies on testing and observation, history is written through the lens of hindsight, and sound business strategy requires accumulated evidence, not knee jerk speculation.

Gathering information over time creates a picture. And as that picture gets bigger, patterns emerge and inform sensible conclusions.

What Mrs Jenkins bought on Amazon last week may not be a reliable guide to what she buys this week. But look at her buying habits over three months and some pattern will likely emerge. Armed with that pattern you can decide what to recommend to Mrs Jenkins next. And plan your stock and pricing accordingly.

Whether or not you’re trying to compete with Amazon, observing your customers’ behaviour over time is essential to sound sales strategy. Unless you know what makes Mrs Jenkins tick, you can’t expect to be relevant to her.

That’s where CRM comes in. By tracking the results of your email campaigns, it gives you patterns of information. These enable your team to pick up the phone and offer prospective customers something they’re genuinely interested in.

Given the high bounce and unsubscribe rates, you could reasonably conclude this is not a terribly clean list. Once you’ve removed the bounces from the list, you’re still left wondering why so many people are unsubscribing. Maybe they’re not interested in your content? Maybe the quality of your writing isn’t up to scratch? Or, maybe you’re being too pushy?

It’s virtually impossible to draw meaningful conclusions from one mailshot – not least because people hardly ever buy on the first ask. By integrating a CRM system – such as Workbooks or  Microsoft Dynamics – with your Mailchimp campaign, you build up a clear picture of how individual customers respond to you over time.

So, rather than the bucket of 25 clicks above, you end up with patterns of behaviour. For each recipient you get to see:

  • the number of opens and clicks.
  • when they clicked.
  • which links they’re consistently interested in.

This is gold dust for your sales team. With this data, they can pick up the phone, confident that your prospect has shown an interest in Product A or Package B. Suddenly, your team is no longer dreading that Mrs. Jenkins will put the phone down after the first 20 seconds.

Management guru, Peter Drucker, said: “The purpose of a business it to create a customer.” An effective CRM system enables you to do exactly that.