When deciding if it is worth going mobile with CRM tools, there are just two points that need to be considered:
1. Employees are the first client of any company.
2. Making life easier will always lead to success.
Once customer data is easy to gather, more data will be collected with more details, and more details will bring with it a deeper level of integration. Integration will allow us to understand trends, segment and give us the ability to build personalised communication to engage users.
When businesses start with CRM data and then integrate it with post-sales, loyalty, revenue, survey and product data, as well as any other information available, they are finally building mobile marketing strategies on a solid foundation.
The success of businesses will depend on incorporating this framework because all prospects and clients want to be informed only with information they find relevant. And, it all starts with CRM tools.
However, it’s troublesome that the three big challenges faced by companies are often missed in analysis and industry articles when it comes to syncing mobile CRM: cost, maturity/expertise and complexity.
Cost & Expertise
Mobile development is expensive. Therefore, big budgets need to be assigned to mobile projects without the guarantee of success. This fact sometimes makes it difficult for a company to loosen the purse strings.
Expertise is a rare quality to find when talking about mobile since the code is ever-evolving, and the most experienced mobile developers of Android, for instance, cannot have more than five years experience (as Android 2 was released in May 2010 while the most-used version of the OS, Jelly Bean, was first released in July 2012).
Outsourcing development is a good option. However, when it comes to handing over business processes and logic to somebody else, the decision to continue becomes increasingly more difficult the further along the project goes.
When creating a mobile strategy in a company, many different areas and departments need to be involved, but when the time comes to prioritise projects, revenue and ROI will always win.
Unfortunately, CRM mobile integration for employees is the one project that inevitably is overtaken by customer-facing applications and/or mobile website releases and optimisations. That said, there are certainly many businesses that would benefit from mobile CRM and greatly increase revenue through its use. They simply need to see this connection in order to make it a top priority in the product roadmap.
Complexity is another important matter. Think of a retail company and the systems managing stock, point of sales and online sales. It takes time to make these system available and sync them. Business today has more opportunities to be ‘mobile first’ because it can start this way.
However, companies that started some time ago need to move forward and take everything they have in place currently, rethink it and rebuild it. When connecting to the mobile world, these companies will have a much more complex task, and always face the risk that adaptation does not work, leading to disappoint as well as a loss in time and financial resources.
Considering the demand and considering users believe their mobile experience is an extension of themselves in which they can perform all their daily activities, I am sure that we will see many more systems integrated and synced on mobile, including companies CRMs.
For the time being, I hope to see much more information and many more companies making themselves available on mobile web. I hope that online payments on mobile will be easier to use and process, forms easier to fill out and options of going back and forth from web to app and from app to web will become smoother.
Underlying all the hope, it is essential that businesses start looking at the benefit of a synced CRM not only from a productivity and efficiency standpoint – even though this would be the first goal – but also from the point of view of business intelligence. In fact, the synchronisation of databases will lead to deeper data analysis and limitless possibilities for mobile marketing and business strategy – It’s core. It’s fundamental for any company that wants to benefit from bringing their mobile opportunity to life.
When it comes to marketing via mobile, once the advertiser has a powerful and clean CRM, that leads to having a better grasp of your prospects and customer base, which in turn allows for deep segmentation and precise targeting.