Why touchpoint data is invaluable to your CRM and driving sales

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What can marketers gain from collecting and integrating touchpoint data into the CRM system?

According to Gartner, organizations worldwide spent $27.5 billion on customer relationship management (CRM) in 2015. This is expected to increase to $37 billion in 2017. But are companies getting a decent return on this large investment?

And more importantly, is your organization using its CRM system to optimize bottom line revenue?

To get the most out of your CRM system, you should be collecting four different types of data:

2016-02-08 CRM data types

The first three are fairly self-explanatory, and most companies have this information in their CRM system:

  • Contract Details: name, title, phone, email address, and other information on individual prospects and customers.
  • Organization Details: industry code, office(s), products, and other details on organizations who are prospects or customers.
  • Transaction Details: what was purchased, when, how much was paid, and other details on purchases made by customers.

Today’s article will discuss the fourth type of data mentioned; touchpoint details.

Although touchpoint details are some of the most valuable data points you can have, many companies aren’t collecting this information in their CRM system.

2016-02-08 touchpoints

Touchpoint details include information on every interaction the prospect or customer has with your brand.

This includes but is not limited to:

  • Marketing email messages which are sent to them, including information on whether they opened and/or clicked on them, and – if they clicked – which link they clicked on, with information on the content related to that link.
  • All other digital marketing, including display advertising that was served to them and whether or not they clicked on it.
  • Website browse history, including the content of the pages they viewed, when they viewed them, and how often.
  • Phone calls, trade show booth visits, and other offline touchpoints, including detail on what was discussed and any actions that came out of the contact.

As you can see, touchpoint details could easily make up the bulk of your CRM database, which is a good thing because the opportunities here are incredible.

The more touchpoint details you have, the more ‘blue sky’ possibilities you have to drive revenue. But beware: if you try to do too much too quickly, you could end up trying to boil the ocean and get overcome by a tsunami of data.

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One of the great things about touchpoint detail is that, in most cases, your organization has the information:

  • When using even the most basic email send solution, you know who you send messages to, what content is in each message, and whether people open or click on them.
  • Tracking website browse behavior in a granular fashion is something that many analytics products can do for you. Even if you don’t have a sign-on to your website, once a prospect clicks through from an email message, you can set a cookie and track their behavior.
  • If someone at your company speaks with a person via phone or at a trade show, they know the person’s identity and what was discussed.

What makes touchpoint detail so valuable is that it can tell you things that contact and organization detail don’t.

Touchpoint data is a precursor to transaction detail and allows you to learn what products are of interest to someone before they purchase them. This gives you a leg-up on your competition; you can reach out to them before they buy elsewhere.

It also helps improve the relevance of your marketing by leaps and bounds. Instead of taking your best guess at which products are of interest and which channels are best, you have a road map to guide you.

So why aren’t more companies gathering and then leveraging touchpoint detail in their CRM systems? 

One word: integration.

The difficulty here isn’t in gathering the information, it’s in getting it into your CRM system in a timely manner. Integration is challenging, and for many companies, it’s what prevents them from getting the most out of their CRM investment.

Take some time today to consider what touchpoint details aren’t yet integrated into your CRM system, but should be.

Think about how you can use touchpoint detail to make your marketing more relevant. Do some ‘back of the envelope’ calculations to gauge what impact this would have on your bottom line. Then talk to your IT folks about starting on the integration.

Let me know how it goes!

Until next time,
Jeanne

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