Transforming the Conversation: Using CRM Software to Fuel Your Customer Experience - Striven

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Transforming the Conversation: Using CRM Software to Fuel Your Customer Experience

Sharon Parker
January 9, 2020
8 min read

As the proud owner of a busy 3-year-old, I often think about the best way to explain…everything. Why he should brush his teeth at night. How to build with Lincoln Logs. What he should do when another kid at daycare takes the toy he’s playing with. I constantly grapple with helping him develop solution-oriented thinking. 

person looking at all in one business management software

Here’s what runs through my mind:

  • What will grab his attention and get my point across? 
  • How can he act on that information? 
  • What will allow him to tackle the challenges at his level— without too much influence?
  • How do I promote a conversation between us that is based on trust?

You can ask yourself a lot of the same questions about your business, and how to create an open conversation with your clients that benefits you both.

We’ve talked about the importance of consolidating your customer profile in order to kickstart sales. Now, we’re going to explore how customer conversation can fuel your growth—and meet your clients where they are.

Personalizing the Customer Experience with CRM Software

A scenario: 

You’re the office manager of an apartment property management company, and yesterday you welcomed a new tenant. Before they moved in, you gave them the option to remodel their bathroom and upgrade their washer/dryer. They accepted and are very happy with the upgrades, but their washer/dryer wasn’t installed correctly. They send the office a message through their online task portal, and you schedule their maintenance for the same day.

It’s the most painless maintenance experience they’ve ever had, and they send you a thank you. But you’ve got more up your sleeve, and you don’t stop there.

Your receptionist remembers the customer’s name when they come in and that they like the Thai place on the corner. The maintenance staff checks in regularly to see if there’s anything they need. And you keep the community well-informed through newsletters about everything from roof replacement to the starting time of Main Street’s annual Independence Day parade.

With service like that, why would your tenants choose to live anywhere else?

crm software experience

That’s personalizing the customer experience, with a strong emphasis on client relationship and dialogue. The strategy, while encased in a fictional example, can easily apply to any service-based business. As Harvard Business Review notes in their study on personalization, “nine in 10 survey respondents say their customers now expect them to know their interests and anticipate their needs…they expect to receive personalized recommendations that are helpful and relevant.”

Personalization is key to your sales approach, but you have to go about it efficiently. If you’re hyperfocused on handling each and every customer without a way to harness that information in a streamlined fashion (i.e. if you have to use 20 different programs to personalize), your employees are going to forget that your customers are actual people who just want individualized service. 

CRM software was built for just that purpose. It keeps you and your clients on track.

Using CRM to Establish Trust Through Relevancy

So, how do these actions help you attract and land new prospects online? It starts with establishing a baseline of trust with your clients and future prospects.

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After you implement a CRM system, your fragmented customer profile becomes synchronized and easily accessible. The question is: what are your customer’s needs, and how do you start meeting them more successfully? Extend your focus out past your marketing and really connect with your clients’ personal pursuits.

Here are some starters to begin personalizing the conversation:

  • Ask your clients what’s going on in their lives. Make a connection with your client first, pay attention to nuance, and take notes. How do they spell their name, and do they get frustrated when companies send them emails with it spelled wrong? Did their aunt have a cancer scare last month? Put those notes into your client profile.
  • Find out what they’re struggling with. Is there a piece of something they’d like to do that they can’t find a solution for? Why? Do you have an alternate recommendation for their situation that might fit them better?
  • What can you do better? Do it. Ask them for feedback on your services and see if there’s a way to refine what you thought was right for them.

Finally, ask for an update. When you speak with them next time, ask about their aunt. Did they end up trying the pho at that new Vietnamese place for their anniversary? How did that fix to the dryer work out? Show them you’re paying attention, that you’re a real person, and that you’re focused on what they want from you.

Push the Conversation Outward

Once you’ve begun building trust, it’s time to create a dialogue that revolves around your customer’s experience. You want to make it easy for clients to participate in your company dialog where it matters. And you want to use that conversation to reach new clients.

crm marketing software

Here’s a simple 3-step process you can follow:

  • What is your organization doing right now
  • Why is that relevant to your clients, 
  • How does that feed into the ongoing overall discussion?

In 2018, only 30% of businesses practiced even the most rudimentary forms of personalization, but that number has continued to grow. Personalization is now the rule, not the exception, and there are so many ways to get your clients involved in your dialog. 

  • You might create multi touch email campaigns through your CRM tailored to customers who are involved in local industries or interests.
  • Your customers will take the information you provide and answer you directly with questions or comments. They’ll use social channels to discuss it, and invite others to join in on that conversation.
  • Your interaction on a personal level with your client’s needs, as well as your participation in their online dialog, will prompt them to continue their engagement.The result is more conversation: a private or online testimonial, word of mouth and recommendations to acquaintances, and more clients. 

Tap the flow of your client’s conversation, and your client base will thrive.


Asking questions, creating a back-and-forth between myself and my son, and placing targeted stepping stones lead him in the right direction. The important thing is that it promotes his forward momentum and enables him to fulfill his own goals. In the same way, business relationships built on trust, commitment, and mutual benefit yield genuine results.

In their online review, your clients emphasize your trustworthiness, commitment to good business practices and the well-being of your tenants, and your initiative in recognizing changes that may benefit tenants. They give you the highest recommendation and tell everyone they know about you.

Eventually they buy a house to accommodate their growing family and vacate. Two months later, they show up on your doorstep. Son in hand, they’re holding the invite you sent them to tour the community’s holiday lights display. You’re showing a potential tenant around, and your old tenants chime in before they leave: “You’re going to love living here.”

The most effective things in business tend to be simple. Taking care of your clients, staying relevant to their needs, and finding ways to engage them in your company conversation at all levels is a vital step towards transforming your business’ growth.

This article is part of a series on CRM software. Stay in touch to find out more about CRM, its uses and functions, and how it can help your business grow in 2020.

Sharon Parker Headshot

Sharon Parker

A former travel and hospitality industry veteran, Sharon Parker utilizes content and graphic design to shape the visual narrative of small business. Her lifelong fascination with the influence of storytelling inspires her passion for great content, an exemplary user experience, and the journey of the consumer. She devotes her spare time to experimenting with her family’s recipes, amateur photography, and poetry.