The goal is pretty straightforward: If you understand your customers, you can anticipate their demands and know where to invest.
The not-so-straightforward part? Getting to know your customers in the first place.
That’s why Dave Mulcahy, director of the Small Business Development Center at Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas, says you need to draw up a formalized, streamlined process for customer relationship management (CRM).
Basically: When everyone on staff is on the same page and invested in understanding the customer? Everyone on staff can anticipate the customers’ demands and what will sell.
Here are some basic questions to gauge how well your shop’s CRM observes your customer base:
- Is your target customer clearly defined?
- Is your customer database regularly updated?
- Do you actively seek customer comments and complaints?
- Are you using multiple ways of obtaining customer information?
- Are you regularly auditing CRM activity?
- Are customers surveyed to determine satisfaction levels for existing services?
Read more tips from Mulcahy in the his article from the February issue.