Buying Tips for Purchasing CRM for Marketing

By Robin Wilding
Updated: May 18, 2011

Purchasing a CRM specifically with your marketing department in mind is a phenomenal idea, because most people think primarily about sales when implementing a CRM tool.

A CRM solution for marketing will allow your company to better recognize sales opportunities, to automate the process, to analyze your marketing decisions—past, present and future--probably for the first time, and to bridge the gap between sales and marketing. When purchasing a CRM solution for your marketing department consider the following tips:

Tip #1: Consider What Training is Needed

Marketing people are not like IT or even sales, in that they do not have as many software-based tools available to them. When rolling out the solution you may need to host training sessions—either on your own or vendor-led, and identifying this need early on in the purchasing cycle will help you ensure that your solution is widely adopted.

Tip #2: Integrate Sales and Marketing

The biggest disconnect that most companies have is between their sales and marketing departments. If your company, like so many others, has a communication problem between the two departments then focus on software features that help integrate the two. For example buying a CRM software that has an automated lead generation feature will ensure that leads are not lost due to failure to communicate.

Tip #3: Ask Marketing

IT geeks know about IT. Marketing folks know about marketing. While you will choose the software, implement it and maintain it—your marketing people will be the ones using it, so ask what features they want available to them.

Tip #4: Find a Marketing Point Person

Finding a point person within the marketing department will help keep things in perspective for you. Having a go-to person in the department will also help increase adoption rates as the person is integrated in the department and can help with training and can encourage their fellow employees to continue using the tool.

Tip #5: Look for Mobility

Marketing departments are becoming surprisingly mobile, so be sure to look for mobility features within the CRM that will ensure that the users in marketing can be as mobile as needed.

Tip #6: Look for Powerful Analytical Tools

Marketing departments usually lack the analytical tools to asses how the department is doing—so this is a critical tool within their CRM. Giving them the ability to analyze their past mistakes and to properly forecast for the future will increase their efficiency, and the effectiveness of the CRM implementation. 

It is truly important to keep marketing involved in this process because their job roles and processes need a thorough understanding and an IT education isn't going to help you understand their role. The most important aspect of buying a CRM solution for a marketing department is to focus on the tools they want, and tools that will generate enough excitement to increase adoption rates.

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