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Like Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire, the movement of marketing and sales teams in harmony is the holy grail of delivering a better customer experience (CX).
Although the importance of marketing and sales customization has been discussed in depth, core issues are often ignored – among other things, traditional CRM is no longer enough.
For years, B2B marketers have relied on CRM systems to manage customers and leads and synchronize efforts with Sales. The reality is that CRMs – which should be the focal point of any CX strategy – do not fit the purpose. They have become unmanageable and difficult to manage for most B2B marketers, further contributing to the growing gap between marketing and sales.
CRM software now requires more effort to feed and maintain than it is worth giving in return.
The headaches and hassle caused by traditional CRMs are very real. In fact, just over half of the 1,000 sales managers surveyed indicated that their CRM costs their income, a recent survey showed.
The main reason is the inability to predict and prevent customer attrition, also known as churn, and it has many B2B marketers looking for a means to tighten the alignment with Sales to deliver exceptional CX and create customers for life.
This is where a modernized CRM platform powered by artificial intelligence (AI) plays a crucial role.
The high cost of Churn has led B2B marketers to invest in customer retention strategies
In the previously cited survey, about 57% of sales managers said they could not predict when customers would resign, whereas 56% reported increased customer turnover in the previous 12 months and 48% reported that they did not know why customers dropped out.
Churn costs mid-market companies an average of $ 5.5 million a year, which has a devastating effect on brand perception and loyalty.
The lack of insight into customers and leads has led B2B marketers to prioritize data-informed strategies for customer retention.
Degradation of data silos promises CX initiatives
Businesses need access to a single source of truth to optimize CX and manage the expectations required to minimize churn. Difficulties arise when Marketing and Sales work in silos and cannot extract full value from traditional CRM systems. One-third of sales managers surveyed reported that incomplete data was a major source of frustration, and half said they lacked access to customer data in a single view across all features and parts of the business.
B2B marketers rely on CRM systems to build winning customer loyalty and retention programs (fundamental to CX transformation and business growth). Companies that improve the accuracy and completeness of their customer data will improve retention and increase revenue.
Lack of customer clarity may be why 88% of sales managers surveyed say they seek AI for help getting more out of their current CRM processes within the next 24 months to help skip the competition.
An AI-infused CRM platform enables dynamic B2B marketing and sales targeting
Today, AI delivers “fractional” and predictable customer journey analytics that give B2B marketers unprecedented insights between traditional customer journey mile markers, all in real time, greatly improving marketing and sales effectiveness.
AI-driven predictions give B2B marketers a crystal ball to see unprecedented contexts in customer behavior traits that can bring sales opportunities and mark customers who are likely to run away. They also help tailor sales opportunities to an organization’s ideal customer profile (ICP).
B2B marketers can now predict the customer lifetime value of that lead at the beginning of the customer’s life cycle (as opposed to years along the way) by prioritizing leads through their historical success story, helping marketers focus their efforts on the best opportunities and improve performance.
A winning CX formula governs marketing and sales customization
The pandemic dramatically changed how companies interact with their customers and prospects. Alongside the shift came an increased “churn concern” that encouraged companies to prioritize data-informed customer retention strategies to keep loyal customers by their side, protect revenue, and improve business growth.
Today, AI-infused CRM platforms redefine the user experience by eliminating blind spots, busy work, and roadblocks for marketing and sales teams. A single source of truth helps marketing and sales teams adapt, reach new levels of performance and predictability, and deliver a more meaningful and memorable CX by letting the platform do the work. It is the winning formula for sales and marketing.
More resources on CX and reducing customer outflows
Four ways to reduce departures and create a company-wide culture of customer success
Great CX requires new strategies and stronger collaboration
How to win with CX in the hybrid world