No matter the industry a business operates in, understanding the demographic of its target market is extremely important. Collecting data about customers play a major role in improving almost all aspects of a business. In many ways, customer data can be the key to success for diverse businesses. Joshua Melick mentions that consumer data can refer to customer service inquiries, billing history, contact history, product purchases and so on. All this data helps companies to define their overall demographics, gain a better insight into the ways their customers are prone to behaving online, as well as identify the ways to improve the overall customer experience.
While leveraging customer data for superior business prospects and growth is important, identifying and managing this data is not easy. Joshua Melick says that in many businesses today, data tends to be spread across several systems. Due to the purpose-built SaaS applications used these days extensively, business data gets stored in a number of disparate systems. Managing and handling this data is not simple, and usually requires the assistance of a CRM software. CRM or customer relationship management tools are basically designed for managing the interaction of a company with both potential and current customers. Such customers play a vital role in enabling companies to acquire a better understanding of their customer group, and respond to their concerns in order to facilitate superior business growth.
Among the diverse CRM tools available today, Salesforce is one of the most popular ones. Joshua Melick specifically mentions that this is both the best and worst solution for customer data management. In case a business operates in a matter that one can develop solid integration paths smoothly and subsequently use Salesforce ecosystem as a connector, this software can be a great tool. However, doing so can be quite expensive. Moreover, if a person is forced to use Salesforce manually, then it can be difficult to navigate. Its UI is also cumbersome, and does not have adequate ways to enable the creation of specialized or simplified flows for typical uses. However, even if all its disadvantages, Salesforce emerges as a power-packed tool, which people ultimately end up using, even after complaining about it all the time.
If a business has robust support and sales aspects, then a good CRM tool can become its pillar. Customer relationship management is equally important for the industries of consulting, e-commerce, and so on, if not more. Tools to complement the CRM efforts of a company can be many, such as Pipedrive and Airtable. Such tools are way simpler to use, and hence makes better sense for small businesses.
No matter the tool chosen by a business, it is more important that they set it up efficiently and properly connect it to many data. Joshua Melick himself has founded Broadly.com, which acts as a CRM for small businesses, though appears to be more like a messaging app. With this tool, he has tried to solve certain issues related to data handling.