Even 10 years ago it was hard to imagine what our world would be with the development of the Internet and technology. They touch almost all business areas and make them to evolve together with new trends appearing.
One of the most recent emerging trends that’s going to make a revolution in business is the Internet of Things (IoT) – when everything can be connected to the Internet: equipped with sensors, smart things can exchange data, making our lives easier.
Gartner named the Internet of Things the fifth driver of CRM systems together with cloud, social, mobile and large data. It predicts that there will be more than 26 billion devices connected to the Internet by 2020!
IoT rapidly changes our understanding on how to market, sell and service goods. It truly offers huge opportunities for companies by changing the way they can get know their customers in order to provide them better goods and services. IoT allows us not only to collect data from things around the customer, but respond online to his/her request or problem, providing proactive service and a completely new customer experience.
That’s why CRM plays a major role for utilizing data that smart things generate – cloud and large data allows in collecting them, but CRM should support the appropriate reaction from any alert coming from the customer and provide services that haven’t been previously possible. Knowing that many companies have started to adopt their CRM systems for collecting IoT data and using them for marketing, sales and services. If you’re still thinking about what’s in IoT for your business, here are several CRM areas where IoT can give you fast results and take your customer relationships to the next level.
The more you know about customers, the better the profiles for personalization you can create. IoT allows collecting more data and predicting customer behavior more accurately. All together, it forms the basis for highly targeted customer campaigns, which you can leverage in real time. Previously, you could just analyze and predict customer actions offline, but IoT has a real direct influence on customer decisions online, when he/she is buying goods or requires a service. IoT also adds details on how customers use your products and this information helps to understand their needs better and allows you to come up with right message in the right time.
Companies improved their service by implementing automated phone trees or offering self-service. With IoT they can make customer experiences better by turning service from reactive to proactive – by knowing the customers’ problem they can provide a decision or fix an issue even before the customer aware of it. Smart connected things, equipped with sensors, provide all the necessary information or send an alerts, which go into the CRM system and trigger the appropriate processes for resolving the issue.
IoT can help you to understand your customers better. You can track if the customer is in your store and offer him/her a discount or give a special price. IoT helps to make really highly personalized sales – not tritely convert leads into deals, but fit customer needs, or better anticipate them. It also makes it possible in getting feedback from customers by manufacturers without any distributors or agents help. Product developers are now getting full control with what they’ve produced. They can collect customers feedback, analyze how and when they use product, thus quickly improve it and bring it to the market.
It’s a completely new sales model – when you can change prices on the fly and influence customer decisions correctly. Even if now it sounds like science fiction, it will become reality in the near future. Actually many companies have already launched manufacturing and selling goods with embedded sensors, especially sport, medical, automotive and service providing companies.
IoT is the future of CRM. With the increasing number of smart connected things, the amount of data coming from customers will increase too. CRM of Things has to process if you are choosing a CRM system or already have one, think about its ability to support IoT and get ready to compete in the new reality of ubiquitous connectivity.