Part I: Campaign Overview – What every business should know about Microsoft CRM for marketing
A lot of Microsoft CRM users these days are looking for better ways to support new business activities, customer retention programs and business communications – you may not have to look too far for powerful direct marketing capabilities from right within CRM.
Often, marketing stakeholders will be enticed to look at stand-alone marketing acceleration packages, disconnected marketing automation suites, or bolt-ons to their CRM system. Often these more expensive approaches fail to deliver because they don’t have all the ingredients needed for a truly successful marketing effort. Marketers not only want creative and operational excellence, but also rapid execution. What they really need is a way to be sure the system guides their campaign from start to finish.
But take a moment to consider one important fact: In order to be truly effective, your marketing systems must connect to your CRM foundation (i.e. your sales and marketing “central nervous system”). With the right tools integrated within CRM, you can focus on mastering the techniques of execution that are readily available.
With just a bit of knowledge and effort, Microsoft CRM clients can leverage the Marketing “Entity”, a feature-rich module that has tremendous ability to impact your top line.
Let me introduce you to the entire process of CRM-based direct response marketing, and give you some pointers on the tools you will use. But first let me give you a quick overview of the new direct marketing mix…the ingredients to success, and we’ll look at how Microsoft CRM drives these dimensions.
Direct Marketing Basics
We begin with the key ingredients of the “DRM Mix”. Direct marketing boils down to six critical dimensions. Microsoft CRM streamlines all six aspects and builds processes that gear your marketing activities toward making a positive impact on your business:
- Campaign and Metrics: The campaign is the container for all marketing activities and data objects that represent the mix.
- The List: The List answers the question, who is the target of our campaign
- Outbound and Inbound Communication Channels: The channels are the technical communications mediators. Email, direct mail, telephone, social, ecommerce, events are all channels.
- The Offer: The offer is the star of the show. It is a pre-negotiated temptation…of limited time-to-accept, that improves the circumstances of the target. Offers are very specific to the nature and culture of the business.
- Content/Media: The content is the visible, perceivable aspect of the communication. It is the narrative, the copy, the story, the visuals. The story can be on any kind of interface, such as print, video, audio, even a premium or a gift package.
- The Conversion: The Conversion is the transaction events that occur to move people to act. The order is one conversion, but in direct response, you must first get agreements and “hits” to proceed to the next step. Getting someone to click through and visit your landing page is a conversion step. Conversion is enabled by specific conversion channels.
The following CRM elements are typically involved in controlling and directing direct marketing mix:
- Campaigns: the project definition, it’s goals and elements
- Accounts and Contacts: the targets that are prospective buyers or participants in your campaign. The data representing these entities must be enriched and validated
- Lists: groups of discovered, targeted accounts and contacts applied to the campaign
- Leads and Responses: The capture points for responses
- Processes and Dialogues: automated routines that guide our interaction with prospects.
- Opportunities: Prospects that have indicated a willingness to consider buying or participating
- Offer: a custom object provided by Emtec’s marketing acceleration package to help you control your negotiation and re-use it in other applications and at other times, including promotion codes. An offer is a “thing”!
- Channel/Media matrix: a custom CRM object provided by Emtec to help you define and target the delivery vehicles for your campaign.
- Templates: email content with personalized message areas containing the narrative and graphics
- Reports and Dashboards: The “intel” that helps you understand the progress and success of the campaign.
If you look at these elements, you can begin to consider how well your past campaigns have been defined and executed. If you haven’t managed all of these aspects of marketing, you may have underperformed. With the right stuff inside CRM you can drive actionable marketing with the best in the business. Now you have the basic ingredients to successful Microsoft CRM marketing. In Part Two of our series we’ll dive into how to start a campaign; and we’ll begin to add ingredients one at a time.
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