Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and CX: What’s the difference?

It’s no secret that keeping customers happy is the key to any successful business. But as new technologies empower customers in their decision-making and transform how they interact with brands, you’ll need more than competitive pricing and quality products to gain their loyalty. In today’s world, it’s all about customer experience (CX).

A 2018 study by PwC reveals that customers are willing to pay up to 16% more for a product or service in exchange for a great experience. But give them one bad experience and a third of them will walk away from a brand that they love.

It’s no coincidence that Customer Relationship Management (CRM) solutions are now shifting their focus towards CX. At first glance, CRM and CX may appear to be synonymous since they both aim to enhance customer satisfaction and generate sales, but they are in fact two different ways of using customer insights.

Let’s compare the two in more detail and see how they work together.

What is CRM?

CRM is more than just a tool – it’s a behaviour that helps businesses manage their relationships with current customers and prospects well beyond their employees’ inbox and meeting notes. It combines people, processes and tools to create highly personalized, effective interactions with customers.

By centralizing customer data, a CRM software ensures that your business relationships are owned by the organization. You get more transparency between your sales, marketing and customer service teams, which enables a consistent, predictable response from any employee. That means no more:

What is CX?

By definition, CX is a customer’s perception of your brand based on all the interactions they’ve ever had. It’s an integral part of CRM behaviour that focuses on gaining a deeper insight on your customer needs to proactively influence their perceptions of your products or services. And like CRM, CX is more than just a set of tools – to work, it also requires robust processes in place, proper training of your employees and connected data across multiple channels.

CX strategies are all about understanding who your customers are and what they want as opposed to telling them what they want. The insights obtained with CX will help you optimize the current customer journeys, build brand credibility, and ultimately create brand loyalty.

To learn more on the benefits of CX, be sure to check out this blog!

How do CRM and CX work together?

Whereas traditional CRM solutions provide an overview of your customer relationships, they do not provide insights as to why things happen. This is where CX completes the puzzle and allows your organization to answer questions such as what communication channels work best with your demographics or what products you should be showcasing next to a returning customer.

It’s fair to say that CRM and CX go hand-in-hand even though they answer different questions, follow different processes and use different tech stacks and data. Together, they form a powerful solution to building stronger, long term customer relationships. 

Conclusion

At MasterSolve, we’ve long been advocating that CX is the cornerstone of CRM. And as the number of communication channels multiply and customer expectations grow, the need for an integrated CRM and CX strategy has never been greater. 

By supporting this strategy with the right technology, you’ll be unlocking valuable insights that can help you enhance customer satisfaction and outpace your competitors.

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Jenny Jones

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About MasterSolve

MasterSolve is a business and technology consultancy with offices in Toronto, Ontario, and St. Louis, Missouri.  We are your trusted business partner with expertise in Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Marketing Technology (Martech) solutions. We live and breathe CRM we use a combination of best practices and common sense to help you implement and support, the software and technology you need to run your business and meet your goals.

If you are looking for technology and business processes improvement to help you propel your business toward success, give us a call today!