We’ve all heard the stories of customer service experiences that have gone horribly, horribly wrong and in today’s world of social media, those stories spread like wildfire. But personally, I prefer to share stories of customer service done right. Last week, I read this blog post about the author’s recent experience with Morton’s Steakhouse and it gave me goose bumps. Shouldn’t we all strive to bring our donors this kind of personal experience with our organizations?
You will notice the author speaks to the Steakhouse’s spectacular Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system and how it provides him with the consistency of excellent service across the country. A good CRM system should do just that; provide a complete 360 degree view of each and every name in the database.
For non-profits, Convio also knows that behind every name, there is a story, a relationship, a clear way to engage your supporters. Enter Luminate.
What also really resonated with me in the Morton’s story is the statement that “Customer service is no longer about telling people how great you are. It’s about producing amazing moments in time and letting those moments become the focal point of how amazing you are, told not by you, but by the customer who you thrilled.”
So, its important to note that a CRM system can only get you so far, it is how you use the system that gets you to those “amazing moments.” With that, I offer you 5 tips for getting the most out of your CRM system so that you can create your amazing moments:
5 Tips for Getting the most out of your CRM system
1) Garbage in, garbage out. Your CRM system is only as good as the data within it so keeping clean data should be the number one priority. Your database administrator should be running regular data hygiene queries to ensure data remains clean. Duplication of donors in the system is a common problem! Run a de-dupe process at least once a quarter.
2) Have accessibility to your data from anywhere. Imagine you are having lunch with a co-worker at your favorite neighborhood restaurant when you glance around the restaurant and spot one of your major donors having lunch with his spouse. It would be rude to NOT stop by their table and say hello but you must have had too much pasta because your brain seems to be functioning a little slow and you just can’t remember the name of your donor’s spouse. With a few taps on your smart phone, you have access to your donor database and can now look up your donor’s account to find his spouse’s name and to also discover you just received another $5,000 check in the mail from them yesterday. You can now confidently stroll over to your donor’s table and say “Hello Bob and Sally, so nice to see you again.”
3) Be consistent with data. In order to do this, your organization should have standard protocols for how data is entered and stored in your system. Unfortunately, it seems that data consistency is lost every time a database administrator leaves the organization. Be sure procedures and policies are written so they can be passed on to incoming personnel and do not walk out the door when your database administrator leaves.
4) Track results. Your CRM system should not just be a data depository, it should be used to track your marketing and fundraising results in order to maximize donor engagement.
5) Train your employees and provide them with the freedom to use the information. A CRM system is of no use if it never gets used. Be sure an investment is made to properly train employees on how to use the system and continue to monitor your employees’ use of it and reward those that use it frequently and use it well. In addition, what we can all learn from this Morton’s story is to be sure your employees have the flexibility and empowerment to use the system to provide the best donor experience possible!
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