Microsoft Dynamics puts the “customer” in CRM. That’s because this software can serve as the hub across all customer touch points, from sales and marketing to customer relationship management. One platform can do everything, and today’s competitive markets require these kinds of multifaceted tools that can unify an organization.
With Dynamics CRM you can seamlessly capture any activity, including automated emails, and record it to the customer record. This helps create a 360° view of every touch point that you have with a potential customer. It facilities an informed, unified front whether it’s your sales team prospecting a lead or a customer service rep upselling an existing client. You’ll never have to say to a client, “Oh, I didn’t realize…” or, “I’m sorry, I didn’t know.” That’s why connecting sales, marketing, and customer service is crucial to retaining existing clients.
One of the ways MS Dynamics CRM can smash through your organizational silos is through the use of automated marketing campaigns. Automating emails can strengthen your organization’s relationships with existing clients while increasing your ratio of converted sales.
The best part of creating automated anything is that it works in the background. Automation is a huge timesaver in any business. Using automated marketing in MS Dynamics CRM helps your sales team focus in on what they’re supposed to be doing – closing deals. It also frees up the time of your marketing team to work on other things.
HubSpot quotes Statistica as saying 86% of consumers would like receiving monthly emails from companies they do business with. Instead of relying on a sales team to consistently reach clients, automated marketing in MS Dynamics CRM can help you fulfill this customer need.
Here are some tips for how to use automated marketing in MS Dynamics CRM.
First -- The Importance of Your List
As a CRM, Microsoft Dynamics is clearly at the top of its game. It lets you capture client and target information with ease, and then keep it updated for your list marketing efforts.
But any marketing or sales executive knows that every automated email campaign starts first with the list you use. Biz Community says, “The single most important factor for a successful email marketing campaign is the quality of the data.”
Having a CRM like Microsoft Dynamics allows you to capture an extensive amount of sales and marketing data on your customers. Then you can segment your list by behavior and buying patterns, demographics, or other details. That way your email automation will be more effective at personalizing your response to individual consumers. Why is this important? Because today’s customers demand that kind of individualized attention.
Personalizing your response to fit the customer shows your organization “understands” the end user and cares about them. Experian did a survey a few years ago that showed some of the challenges related to creating personalization in email campaigns. They found that creating the kind of 360° view needed to keep today’s customers satisfied was often stymied by the:
- Inability to link multiple technologies;
- Poor data quality; and
- A lack of relevant technology
Having the ability to personalize your automated marketing in MS Dynamics CRM means that your customers will feel more actively involved in your business. Creating this personalized attention begins with an accurate list. Without that data accuracy, you will not be as effective in converting prospects into customers.
The list you hold in MS Dynamics CRM is a potential gold mine of information if you know how to use it properly. There are four key things you can do today to improve the quality of data in your MS Dynamics CRM:
- Keep your lists consistent and up-to-date. You can set up standard rules and naming conventions as part of your regular Dynamics CRM usage, which will help keep your team organized. At the bottom of the marketing lists view you’ll find a lookup feature that will let you identify specific segments of your database. If you’ve selected a consistent naming convention, you will have no problems finding and exporting the lists you’re looking for.
- Always use the description field in the CRM record. Where did this list come from and what is its purpose? What year was it added? Or, any other data that allows you to remember why this list is important.
- Don’t delete; deactivate your lists. Old lists can be removed from cluttering up your marketing list view by “deactivating” the list. If you delete the list, you’ll lose historic data on how that list performed. Say you purchased a list from a particular vendor that was segmented a certain way. If the list wasn’t successful, you’ll want to keep that organizational history so you don’t make the same mistake later on.
- Always tie a particular list to a campaign. Creating a marketing list for a specific purpose helps you run reports on how successful your automated email efforts were over time. It will also help you figure out which targeted prospects are yielding the best sales ROI.
Improved data combined with automated marketing in Dynamics CRM will yield incredible returns for your organization. Now let’s look at ways to use the automated email features in the software.
Ideas for Using Automated Emails in MS Dynamics CRM
We suspect you’ll come up with lots of reasons and ways to automate emails in MS Dynamics CRM. Here are five typical methods for using automated emails to engage prospects – or reengage former customers in your business:
- Welcome email
If new subscribers are coming to your mailing list via a landing page or a pay-per-click campaign, you can integrate completed forms and fields directly into the MS Dynamics CRM. You can flag the subscribers as coming from a particular campaign. Then you can automate an email to welcome them. That email could send them something they’ve signed up for, like an email or a white paper.
- Periodic tickler emails
We mentioned reengaging your customers; you can do this in a tickler email that seeks to stay in touch until the prospect is finally ready to buy. You can set CRM rules to add “cold” leads to a periodic touch point email campaign designed to reengage the non-committed or bring back to the fold clients who have gone to your competitor. Sending a former client a discount for your service might just win them back – but you won’t know this until you try.
- Loyalty email campaigns
All customer relationships atrophy over time. That’s why maintaining established relationships with your VIPs in an automated loyalty email campaign is so important. You can use email to upsell your existing customers, enticing them to call in to place an order, or simply follow a link. You can introduce news services or products. Or, send out a survey to find out how you’re doing in the field.
- Emails to increase sales
Your sales team will be more effective if you can automate emails to shorten the sales cycle. The sales cycle varies; individuals and businesses make decisions in different ways and at different times. You can use automated marketing in MS Dynamics CRM to wear down the customer decision-making process. For example, you could send a series of automated emails that highlight how your product or service could solve the prospect’s problems. Over time, this may make your target audience more receptive to your company and sales team.
- After-the-sale emails
Once the customer has made a purchase, send them a post-sale email that helps them enjoy your product or service, or highlights features they may be unfamiliar with. It could reiterate your warranty or even make some cross-sell suggestions. You can even segment the customer by the product they buy and send them different emails based on the flags set in Dynamics CRM.
Tracking the Success of Your Automated Marketing in MS Dynamics CRM
Automated marketing in MS Dynamics CRM can be set up to track key performance indicators (KPIs) for your email campaigns. You can track, analyze, and run reports on these and other metrics:
- Unique opens
- Unique clicks
- Total clicks
- Hard bounces
- Soft bounces
- Invalid emails and failures
Microsoft has a good page here that shows exactly what these metrics mean and how to access them. We particularly like the performance over time; it allows a chart or a graph view that makes for simple data visualization that any level user can grasp immediately.
Finally, make sure you’ve set up rules that allow you to track these emails directly back into the CRM record before automating your first campaign. This is crucial so that your sales team knows what customer contact has occurred before they pick up the phone. Check out this Dynamics 365 page that explains exactly how to set up these rules.
Automated Marketing/MS Dynamics
Now that you understand the importance of automated marketing in MS Dynamics CRM, we hope you will consider taking the time to explore these tools thoroughly. IES is standing by if you need Dynamics CRM training or assistance in ways to use automated emails in MS Dynamics CRM to accelerate your marketing efforts and increase sales. Contact us today to learn more.