7 Things to Look for in a CRM (and 5 Mistakes to Avoid)

Published by Kelly Arnett on

Managing relationships is important, especially for network marketers. In this industry, it’s all about who you know (and how many people you know).

But what’s the use of growing your network if you’re not going to foster relationships with them?

One way you can do this is with a CRM. With the right one, you can easily keep track of all the customers you sign up, maintain those relationships, and, in turn, grow your business. On average, brands see an ROI of $8.71 for every dollar spent on a CRM.

And if that’s not impressive enough, imagine having a platform that automatically collects information from new recruits, sends out personalized messages, and places all your relevant data in a dashboard to help you improve your network marketing.

If you’re considering implementing a CRM into your sales strategy, here are 7 things you should be looking for when making your decision.

1. Free Sales Management Tools

Like they say, “The best things in life are free!” Yet, this isn’t always the case when you’re talking about business tools. However, there are platforms out there that offer a ton of value at no cost to you.

This is great news whether you’re new to network marketing or looking to expand your operations. You’ll find that some platforms start with a free plan that comes with limited online storage, users, etc. Then you can choose to upgrade to a paid subscription to receive unlimited capabilities.

Zoho is one CRM that offers free services for the first 10 users. This is a great way to test out the full capabilities of the platform before you expand your operations. But do note that there are CRMs on the market that are completely free forever.

The more you can save, the more you can grow. So don’t overlook using a completely free platform!

2. Automatically Track All Your Sales Activities

Your business is quickly growing – you’ve got recruits coming in left and right and they’re all trying to succeed. But how will you manage all of those sales and people?

Instead of hiring an accountant or bookeeper, try to find a CRM that’ll keep track of each sale so you can stay organized up until tax season. Plus, you’ll gain valuable insights into how well your network performs over time.

3. Ability to Manage Multiple Companies

Let’s face it – entrepreneurs tend to have a knack for starting businesses. So who’s to say you’ll only want to stick with  one network marketing organization? Maybe you’ll want to start working with one or two more network marketing companies in different niches.

This is possible and made easier when using a quality CRM. The one you choose should give you the ability to manage multiple companies so all your sales, recruits, and content and contacts from different organizations are all perfectly organized in one place.

4. Text and Video Chat Functions

We can’t overstate the importance of staying connected with your teammates and customers. You don’t want to leave them hanging once they join or they’ll be less likely to stick around. So to continue growing your business, you need to communicate effectively.

This works easier when you have a CRM that enables you to connect with all your people via text and video chat. You can train, coach, and provide support so that your network grows skills and knowledge to help you all succeed.

If you’re already using social media to communicate with your network, you can use a CRM with integrated social media publishing features. In fact, sales reps see a productivity increase by 26.4% just by adding social networking and mobile access to their CRM.

5. Create Content Directly in the Platform

You’re a network marketer, which means you need to create and publish interesting content to help you spread the word.  There are CRMs that allow you to craft content to post on your social media networks. Just make sure that the your CRM can also track the performance of each of your posts, such as the likes, reach, comments, shares, and so on.

6. Great Security Features & Capabilities

With all the data you’re collecting about your salespeople, customers and your transactions, it’s essential to have a CRM that’s secure. Some providers offer more in-depth features than others so make sure to check this out.

Also, inquire about the protocols and solutions used to ensure breaches don’t occur within your CRM network. If you’re in Europe, make sure your CRM is GDPR compliant.

7. Multiple User Access

As your network marketing business grows, you’re going to need help to manage it all. And while a CRM can make life easier, it wouldn’t hurt to enlist the help of humans. Once you do, you should be able to create user accounts for your staff so they can access the CRM.

Now that you have an idea of what to look for in a CRM, let’s take a look at five mistakes you should avoid.

Using an Unscalable CRM Solution

In network marketing, it’s all about growth. Yet, there may be times when things slow down. So it’s essential for your CRM to scale up and down as you need it to.  Scalability is always a feature you want when selecting a tool for your business.

Choosing a Platform that’s Not Mobile-Friendly

In the world of network marketing, you’re constantly on the go. This means you need to be able to access your business tools from your mobile devices. It’s also good for your CRM to effectively integrate with your current systems, provide real-time updates while on calls and scheduling appointments.

By using a CRM with mobile capabilities, 24% more sales reps are achieving their annual sales quotas.

Selecting a CRM that’s Not Intuitive

If your CRM isn’t user-friendly, then it’s going to take a lot to get everyone on board. The learning curve for adopting a CRM shouldn’t be extensive so it doesn’t take a lot of time and resources to train yourself and others.

For instance, Salesforce is a popular tool that’s renowned by large corporations for its range and depth of features. While this may be valuable for  large organizations, complexity can also hold back your business if the platform you choose isn’t intuitive enough to scale easily.

PipeDrive, on the other hand, is lightweight and easy to use.  One drawback of this platform is that you have to integrate Zapier to make up for its lack of automation and integrations.

As you’re shopping around for a CRM, make use of the free demos and trials to see which best suit your needs.

Being Too Ambitious

Yes, while ambition is great to have, there is such a thing as having too much of it. In this case, it could lead to you getting in way over your head. For example, deploying unnecessary CRM features that are confusing and intimidating to those new to the platform.

If you do too much customizing, you can jam up your interface with tedious tools that are distracting or repetitive.

Not Having Metrics to Measure Success

As with any marketing strategy, you should have clear metrics set to ensure you’re reaching your business goals. Your CRM can be your best friend or your worst enemy in this case.

With established metrics, you can use your CRM to track and measure your success. Once you set them, make sure to check them regularly.

There are five key metrics you should be tracking, including:

  1. Conversion rates
  2. Repurchase rates
  3. Retention rates
  4. Reactivation rates
  5. Win-back rates

Around 92% of marketers know that data management is essential to their business. But 40% aren’t sure how to use the data they collect. If you can focus on the right numbers that matter to your end goal, then you should have no issue analyzing your data.

Finding the Ideal CRM for Network Marketing

Not all CRM platforms are created equal, especially when it comes to catering to the needs of network marketers. That’s why you should seek out a CRM that’s specifically designed for the industry.

That’s what you’ll find at Upline Networks. We designed a CRM platform that comes with all the features that will help network marketing professionals succeed. If you’d like to learn more about our platform, why not give it a try today?  It’s free forever for network marketers.

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