Come on, Retain me …. should be the new acronym for CRM. Hardly any company that I am involved with as a consumer/customer actually uses their CRM, also known as Customer Relationship Management to have a relationship with me as a customer, unless the approach “don’t know who you really are but want to sell you stuff anyway”, falls into that category.
I see it over and over. Companies that have all my information, and I mean all my information (such as the company who manages my mortgage) – with the exception of my blood type – treat me like a prospect, NOT like a client.
My mortgage was sold (again!) to a company I had never heard of and they took the opportunity to (what else is new) sell me something. In this case it was a lower mortgage rate.
This would be a really intriguing concept if they would have actually reviewed my files, looked at my history and determined whether I was a good fit for such an offer.
Research is Essential – Even (or Especially) When You Call On an Existing Customer
But that would entail research and some upfront work, but instead the company decided to have sales people just dial for dollars and to call everybody who had been “switched” over to see if they were interested in a conversation.
It was very quickly apparent that the person who contacted me was using a list with probably thousands of names, rather than a CRM system that would indicate whether I was a good prospect or not.
Now, when it comes to cold calling on completely new prospects, it’s often very difficult to have high level conversations. The resources that we as sales people can use to determine a good fit are somehow limited. BUT when companies already have an existing client base and they are trying to up-sell, it should be mandatory to use all the information they have in their Customer Relationship Management system, shouldn’t it?
Not only do I find it a huge time-waster to speak with representatives of organizations who have all of my customer history and not use the information, it’s also insulting.
What Does It Say About Their Relationship to Me, The Customer?
It gives me the impression that I am just a number and they don’t really care.
If You Have a CRM System, Use It!
It feels like I have to write about this topic on a weekly basis – I’m thinking about my recent post about Salesforce.com – my experience with them NOT using their own product (!!) was a real shocker to me.
In the case of my mortgage company I don’t really have much choice, because I really don’t want to go through another refinancing scenario, whether it’s with this or another company. But, beware – all the other organizations who have my customer file (Cable, Wireless, Credit Cards, etc) – please do me the courtesy and Come on, Retain Me!