Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems were built to do exactly it stands for—to capture interaction with customers in a way that tracks and improves the relationship. In the new world of always-on, real-time, Big Data-driven customer experience management, a CRM is no longer even close to sufficient. They simply weren’t built to manage the key data available today.
Not in the CRM
When a customer opens their mobile browser, a CRM can’t capture this. When a customer enters a store, or browses the product catalog or team schedule with the intent to buy, there’s no way for a CRM to capture that information. Likewise, when a customer enters their hotel room, rental car or aircraft, the CRM has no idea. These moments are critically important in the new world of customer experience as each represents an opportunity for a better, more personal experience than ever before. Today’s CRM can’t manage the information necessary to turn that moment into a meaningful interaction.
It takes an ability to manage real-time information alongside data captured from the past. This is why data squirreled away in a CRM database isn’t enough to create great customer experiences. The goal must be to make all engagement more personal and intentional—every customer touchpoint, every interaction. Each discreet point adds to the amalgam of contextual information that makes it possible to better understand where the customer has been and what they’re doing right now, in real time. This connecting of the dots is what makes a customer respond, creates loyalty, and turns customers into fans, brand advocates, and far more valuable assets.
The point isn’t to pick on CRM systems. There’s still a need to have a source of data about opportunities. That source, however, only satisfies a much larger need to manage the complete customer experience.
This post first appeared on the Loyalty Lab Blog and has been lightly edited.