Your clients are the foundation and reason for everything you do in your business.
Keeping track of your clients, past clients, prospects, suspects, vendors etc and staying abreast of their past purchases, preferences, problems. CRM is an important tool to be used by sales, marketing and customer service.
The history of CRM is said to start in the 1980’s but in truth it started with the first merchant on a customers next visit, remembered what his customer bought, called him by name and pointed out that he had just received more of that item at a great price and would pass the savings on to his grateful customer.
As the number of customers grew the merchant began writing down their name and preferences in a ledger.
With the advent of index cards – each customer had their own card.
The big leap was software TeleMagic invented by Michael McCafferty in 1985 and marketed by his company Remote Control International.
TeleMagic is the name of the earliest known software product for persona
l computers designed for salespeople and entrepreneurs for the purpose of keeping track of customers and prospects. Originally, the software was sold into the telemarketing marketplace and quickly evolved into mainstream sales applications. Subsequently there were many competitive products which came to market to perform these functions and this category eventually became known as Contact Management Software, then Sales Force
Automation software, and ultimately Customer Relationship Management software. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TeleMagic)
As of 2013 there are a myriad of software to choose from – their price range from FREE to Hundreds of Thousands of dollars. But if your database is not clean, no amount of money will make a difference. Database hygiene is a process of keeping your data up-to-date.
The next post in the series will discuss the types of CRM software.
If you have a database that has not been kept up to date March Direct Marketing offers a number of services to help – Click Here for more information