A customer relationship management system.

The name itself suggests that this tool is only necessary when you have a customer base and want to maintain relationships with users that have already made a commitment. This isn’t entirely true. While CRM software is useful for supporting and managing a database of existing customers, it’s also a valuable tool for their acquisition.

Marketing, sales, product development, and even C-level executives can always improve their customer acquisition process and generate more sales. In this article, we explain how CRM helps those different departments along the customer acquisition process.

In this article, you'll find out:

How CRM helps marketers improve customer acquisition

According to findings from the Direct Marketing Association, 20% of marketers identified data as a critical challenge to their customer acquisition strategy. Inconsistent, incomplete and out-of-date data doesn’t allow marketers to understand the peculiarities of their target audience. As a result, acquisition efforts lack personalisation and relevance, becoming less effective.

CRM systems provide marketers with access to the required information and help them build a more successful lead generation strategy.

CRM helps define buyer personas

If you want marketing assets to speak to the ideal buyer’s goals and challenges, you need to create effective, targeted content. To make narrative helpful, relevant, and personalised, you need to know as much as possible about its intended recipients. This is only possible when you have a clear picture of who you’re marketing to.

It’s best to know your audience’s demographic and firmographic characteristics, acute pains, needs, and wants. Creating a buyer persona - a fictional representation of your ideal customer - is an integral part of the marketing planning process.

How to define your buyer persona and boost sales [+Template]
Find it hard to relate to your prospects? Don’t know how to adjust your pitch to convert them? Read our guide to buyer personas.

CRM software offers data for every stage of the buyer persona creation process. Start your buyer persona research by looking at who’s already buying from you. Scan through your customer database to collect the following information about your existing customers.

  • Who contacted you first from your customer’s company?
  • Was the first response from the final decision maker?
  • Are they your company's primary point of contact?
  • What company roles do they fulfil?
  • Do they have a supervisor they report to, or decide independently?
  • What acquisition channel brought them to you?
  • What content have they interacted with the most and least?
  • What were their defining pains, needs, and wants?

Ideally, all these data points should be available for every contact in your system.

If you can’t find some details, we recommend turning to the people who are the most familiar with the customers; customer-facing employees. They could be account managers, customer success managers, customer support reps, anyone. Thanks to the shared platform nature of CRM, you can easily assess call logs and email exchange history. Analyse them to gain further insight into the character of your existing customers.

You can also ask customers for direct responses. Set up a questionnaire and share the link to the web form with your customers via email or messenger. Link the web form with your CRM software with a webhook, and have all their responses automatically roll into the database. Then, you can use the CRM to segment customers by industry and job title. Group customers with shared characteristics into separate views and identify the most common traits they have.

CRM helps form proper messaging

It’s not just about who you market to, it’s about how you do it. For marketing content to resonate with a target audience, you want to make sure it appeals to them and their specific needs. It’s essential for you to be on the same wavelength as customers and create content that finds them at the right stage of their buyer journey. Adjust the language you use in marketing messages.

  • Use the same vocabulary as your customers to appear more relatable.
  • Fit language of content to the lead’s stage of the buyer cycle.
  • Learn the jargon customers use and use it too.

Tailor content to your leads’ current level of knowledge. Don't use niche abbreviations when communicating with people who are only dipping their toes into a topic. Similarly, when you're talking to leads that are further down the sales funnel and more knowledgeable, restrain from offering overly detailed descriptions and explanations of simple concepts.

To find out which language your target audience uses, check your CRM system. Go through the history of your communication with existing customers and look for the commonalities in their vocab. Apply that knowledge to craft the message your leads will easily understand and accept.

CRM acts as a source of data for lookalike audiences

As a marketer, never underestimate the power of a paid ad. It’s a given that if you target the right audience with your advert, you’ll acquire a lot of new customers. Social media developers understand the struggle of finding great potential customers. Driven by the benefits of platform monetisation, they offer tools that enhance targeting. Social media platforms like Meta (Facebook and Instagram), Twitter, and LinkedIn allow you to target lookalike audiences to reach people that have something in common with those already in your database.

After all, you already have some amazing customers in your CRM - why not use them as a reference for your search? All you need to do is import existing customers, from your CRM database, into a social media ad manager and set the desired similarity percentile of 'lookalikey-ness'. The system singles out users that are the closest match to the contacts you’ve imported and show them your ad.

How CRM helps salespeople improve customer acquisition

CRM data enhances prospecting

The more lead sources you incorporate into a lead generation strategy, the more leads you will generate. You need to make use of every opportunity you have and not limit your business to a single lead generation channel. Still, when you need to manage several lead sources at once, it becomes a laborious, impossible task. Turn to your CRM solution for help.

The majority of good, modern sales CRM solutions offer integration with third-party apps, allowing you to automatically enrich your customer database with LinkedIn leads, create new records from incoming emails or link your Intercom and Facebook Messenger conversations to the system. Similarly, you can turn to web form lead generation. The beauty of this strategy is that it’s extremely versatile, you can collect leads that interact with your contact us form, gated content form, newsletter subscription field and more.

Web Form Lead Capture in NetHunt CRM

CRM automates routine sales processes

According to data, modern-day sales professionals spend only 34% of their time actually selling. The rest of their time is wasted on data entry, quote generation, and other repetitive tasks that take them away from customers. There’s a negative correlation between the amount of time sales reps spend on manual data entry and the number of customers they acquire. The more time they waste on manual database enrichment and lead nurturing, the less they sell. Simple.

Modern CRM solves this issue by offering advanced sales automation functionality. Not only does it save time, but it also allows for cleaner, duplicate-free data.

A sales manager’s guide to fighting manual data entry
This article explains why it’s essential to automate data entry with the top five sales processes that sales teams can automate in CRM.

On top of that, you can also set up automated lead nurturing email sequences to convert more leads into customers faster. Here’s an example of a lead nurturing workflow in NetHunt CRM.

A drip campaign workflow in NetHunt CRM
  • Our workflow is triggered whenever a lead enters our pipeline..
  • Branch A is a drip campaign. It sends pre-written emails automatically to nurture leads; a welcome email, an invitation to demo, etc.
  • Branch B is a control for when an email is received. At this point we can humanise our contact with a lead and manually interact with them. They don't need to receive any more automatic drips.
  • Branch C is another control. When a lead moves along the pipeline, we can consider them nurtured and they also don’t need any more drips.

CRM enables personalised cold-outreach

Cold email outreach remains one of the most effective ways to acquire new customers.

  • Cold emails reach users where they spend most of their time: the inbox.
  • Cold emails are persistent, waiting for an intended recipient to see them.
  • Cold emails are cost- and time-effective.
  • Cold emails are a scalable outreach strategy.

It’s only possible to leverage the last benefit of cold email if you have a dedicated tool to send emails in bulk. Otherwise, you’ll end up wasting all your time composing emails and hitting send.

The majority of modern CRM solutions offer at least some degree of email marketing functionality. You can either use CRM to send mass email campaigns to cold leads or you can automate the whole emailing process. Simply configure a sequence of emails that would go on until you receive a response and qualify the lead. Let the software do the hard work for you.

Moreover, you can segment your audience by a number of factors and use macros to send out email campaigns with personalised elements...

  • The lead’s first and last name: Hello, {{Name}}.
  • The lead’s job title: For {{Sales managers}} as yourself, our CRM can...
  • Personalised offers: We understand that {{reason lost}} was a problem.

Email marketing CRM allows you to track the performance of your email campaigns. Unlike regular email marketing software that isn’t integrated with a CRM system, an email marketing CRM gives you a chance to immediately see the impact of every mass email on the state of your sales pipeline.

CRM effectuates customer service

If you want to acquire more customers, you need to ensure that customer service is top-notch. It’s essential that you react to inquiries and interact with every single lead entering your sales pipeline as soon as possible before they turn to competition. Here are the two stats you need to know.

  • Poor response times can increase churn by up to 15%.
  • Responding within the first minute can increase conversions chance by 391%.

The best way to accommodate quicker reactions is to set up automated lead distribution and alerts for the sales reps in the CRM. During the trial period, this can easily become your competitive advantage and convince the lead to become a paying customer. Here’s how you can do that in NetHunt CRM.👇

How CRM helps product managers improve customer acquisition

One of the rules of successful customer acquisition is to involve every employee in the process of improving the product your company tries to sell. With customer satisfaction as your business’ top  priority, you quickly earn your target audience’s recognition and enjoy an influx of new customers. CRM systems are a great source of insight about what customers want from your product and how you can improve it.

Product managers can use the CRM data to prioritise the roadmap and focus on developing the features most requested by the target audience. They can filter the database and create a custom view with churned customers, examining why they have stopped using the product. Reason lost is a clear indicator of which features - and lack thereof - were the dealbreaker for customers.

Similarly, product managers can benefit from the data logged into the CRM by the customer support and customer success teams. Look through the history of communication with your current customers and see if they request any features regularly.👇

A sorted request log in NetHunt CRM

Finally, you could distribute a questionnaire among existing customers to find out their opinion on the usability of your product. Set up a web form and pull all the responses in the CRM automatically to not let any details fall through the cracks and quickly spot trends.

How CRM helps C-levels improve customer acquisition

As a C-level manager, you need to oversee your business’ general strategy, including the customer acquisition strategy, and make adjustments where necessary. If you see that a certain lead generation strategy isn’t as fruitful as planned, review it and reduce effort spent on developing it. If another brings the desired results, understand which factor contributes to the overall success of the strategy and scale those activities.

Automated reporting in a CRM system helps track the sales performance of your business, understand your strengths and weaknesses, and spot opportunities for better customer acquisition.

Imagine you see that one region is leading closed deals. You could adjust business priorities and develop a go-to-market strategy for that specific region to get more customers that would be similar to the existing ones. You can hire a regional sales team, spend more ad budgets, and attend local events.

If every employee at your company works towards achieving the same goal and has all the tools needed to aid the company’s sales, you’re all set for success!

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