Customer relationship management (CRM) and customer experience management (CEM) are commonly confused with one another. On the surface, both software solution types capture and analyze customer information, which is why businesses often question if they need to have both and if one can cover the same functionality of the other.
This confusion is quite understandable, especially since CRM and CEM solutions also share the same goal of boosting a company’s profitability through the optimization of its business strategies. While their goal might be similar, the approaches both CRM and CEM solutions take to achieve it are different, and we’ll explain how in the following paragraphs.
CRM systems help businesses drive sales growth by building and maintaining long-lasting relationships with their customers. CRM systems keep comprehensive records of all interactions and transactions you’ve made with existing and potential customers, including and how and when they became a customer, how often they’ve purchased from you, how much they have spent, etc. This information is then used to fine tune the sales process and create targeted marketing campaigns.
CRM platforms help companies address the following questions:
A customer experience management software (commonly abbreviated as CEM, CXM, or CX software) performs a range of functions besides helping you collect and analyze customer feedback. The goal of CEM solutions is to provide businesses with real-time, actionable insights into their customers’ likes and dislikes to increase customer satisfaction, retention rate and ultimately, the company’s bottom line.
CEM platforms help companies address the following questions:
Both CRM and CEM solutions help businesses collect and analyze customer information, keep detailed customer profiles, track customer journeys, as well as finetune marketing campaigns based on real-time customer data.
The majority of CEM and CRM solutions integrate with companies’ email, phone, live chat, and social media to streamline communication with customers. They may also offer some of the following capabilities, or achieve it through integration with 3rd party software solutions:
Seeing how CRM and CEM solutions aren’t interchangeable, companies can invest in both of them while keeping the following considerations in mind:
At a time when customers have numerous product and service options to choose from, investing in measures that build meaningful relationships and deliver personalized experiences is how companies stand out from competitors and stay in business. Several studies have concluded this, including one by Salesforce, suggesting that business leaders who leverage CRM solutions see an increase in sales by as much as 29%, while a study by Forrester estimates that business leaders who focus on CEM strategies achieve five times more revenue growth than their CEM-laggard competitors.
There are so many CRM and CEM solutions available today, each with different offerings and price points. Before implementing them for your business, make sure you have a clear idea of your needs and challenges, then carefully select products capable of addressing them.
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