How to Use CRM Within Your Optimization Strategy

March 11, 2015 - Ensighten

Let’s start with a quick refresher! CRM is an acronym for customer relationship management. When we talk about CRM in the context of testing, we’re talking about the valuable customer and prospect data stored and managed within these systems.

The content of your CRM file should be an integral part of your optimization program. CRM allows you to take personalization, one of the most-talked about customer experience initiatives of 2015, to the next level. As anyone with an ear turned towards the current state of optimization will tell you, the more personalized and relevant a user’s experience is, the more likely he or she is to convert on your site. If we were to boil it down to an even more simplistic statement it would be this; more personalization means more revenue. Keep this in mind, it might be useful when you’re selling senior management on the latest optimization initiative.


Website optimization & CRM:  A use case for your industry

Two common use cases for optimization with CRM are targeting and CMS. Both use cases require simple and/or complex logic (in other words, rules). Targeting a user can generate significant upsell, but this requires you to understand your customer’s past purchases or investments.

Using CRM data to create a CMS is also effective. Most companies offer different experiences to different subsets of visitors. While all consumers are important, you may want to show exclusive offers to members of your loyalty program versus daily offers to users who are not logged-in. CRM data can help you match The Who with The What.

If you’re an airline, you can use your customer’s CRM data to sell in-flight add-ons. If a passenger flies once every 3 months and purchases Wi-Fi either prior to the flight or in-flight, it is safe to assume they will purchase Wi-Fi on their next flight. Not only can you advertise purchasing Wi-Fi within the booking funnel, you could also email them every three months with specials or deals regarding current airfare or partner offers (e.g., hotel or rent-a-car).

For a retailer, utilizing a CRM file will allow you to advertise and sell items that complement a prior purchase. For example, if a user purchased a sports jacket, show the user a shirt or tie that would complement it.

An online broker could utilize a CRM file to increase trading activity. If a user has a portfolio that has only high rated municipal bonds, you can use this data to recommend other investment vehicles the trader can invest in such as conservative bond funds or mutual funds. A CRM file can also increase assets under management. A bank could show a customer who only has a checking account that they offer a high yield savings account. Messaging interest rate levels could increase the number of accounts openings, thereby increasing money within your bank. With more money coming in, you can lend more out, directly resulting in increased revenue.

Will my CRM be effective even if it doesn’t contain PII data? The answer is yes! As I mentioned above, the more personalized the customer experience, the better. However, some industries such as financial services do not allow PII data to be used with testing. If this is the case, do not worry. You do not need a user’s name, social security or even street address to personalize their experience. For instance, simply knowing a user’s zip code means you can highlight their closest branch on the homepage--you might even invite said user to an educational event!


A drop in the bucket

These are only simple examples of how financial services, retail, and travel brands can and are using CRM to optimize the customer experience with personalization. As brands begin to succeed in putting their customer data to use, CRM becomes increasingly powerful. Consumers are becoming more comfortable with the notion that brands will use their data to improve their experience and that comfort is rapidly transforming into an expectation. Understanding how CRM can be used to personalize the customer experience is helping brands turn this important initiative into a reality.

We would be remiss not to mention how Ensighten, a Maxymiser technology partner, enables brands to make powerful use of CRM and other customer data. Ensighten merges CRM and other data to create one profile across channels. For our mutual clients, Ensighten exports profile data into Maxymiser which we use to optimize the customer experience with strategic personalization and testing. We are proud to be a Platinum Sponsor at Ensighten’s upcoming event, AGILITY 2015. Visit us in San Francisco on April 13th to find out more about the Maxymiser/Ensighten integration.

About the author: Michael Blumenfeld is a Managing Consultant at Maxymiser, overseeing the strategic direction of customer experience optimization for North American brands in the financial and insurance services categories.


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