Systems of Engagement are the foundation of success

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Systems of engagement are the foundation of success when it comes to customer management.  You heard (or read) it right, systems of engagement -  not systems of record also known as ERP's. We think that systems of engagement - very broadly thought as nowadays as CRM - consist of following key parts: 

○    Marketing
○    Sales
○    Service
○    Community

Marketing will a bit depend on your industry and customers, typically in b2b marketing tools are something where you manage your contacts, leads, events, campaigns and content, and where you track and steer your customers or prospects journeys towards to the conversion point. This conversion point may be anything between lead capturing to an order, thats why various different journeys are needed and its an ongoing looping task to learn and adjust according to the data. The very great thing in todays marketing is that you will have wealth of data, but the challenge is how to use it the best way.

Sales is everything from the marketing qualified lead to the closure of the deal and relationship nurturing. But as we already know, todays prospects have already progressed very far along in their buying journey when they contact the sales organization. Therefore the key to success in sales is to try to understand you customer behaviour better, stay engaged with them constantly and be ahead of your competition by understanding customer needs better. This all is dependent on the data and key success factor will be that which sales organisation can really utilise that data best possible way. Sales in a complex environment, long sales cycles and in front of demanding customers screams to use the data. At the moment data is very underutilised in most of the organisations. We will see huge sales productivity increase within the best sales organisations when they use this data to drive their operations in their systems of engagements.

Service and customer experience management is the essential part of the Revenue Growth Platform. Revenue Growth Platform in its simplest form is basically a subscription business. Your customers will pay you as long as they get value from the subscription they are using, hence in this situation your service organisation is your most valuable asset to renew the subscription and even sell more. No organisation should think of service as a cost center, they should take a look at how they can bring proactivity and accountability to their operations. Accountability for e.g. of the subscription renewals would lead to increase of proactivity i.e. higher engagement and better knowledge of the customer. Data will help again here. There is a wealth of data available on your sold products and services if you start thinking. Next you should think of how you could use this data to drive better business results.

Communities of customers or consumers in general took the power from the enterprises in this era of social networks we are living. The number one source of truth on how it is going with your products compared to your competitors products is the community. Its your customers source of truth but many times overlooked by the blind companies. Think if you could get all of your customers who are using your products since you started your company to the one community to tell you what works and what is not working. Is this a scary scenario or an opportunity? Think if you could use the power of your happiest customers in the community for your success and nurture your least happiest customers early on to not leave you or communicate bad news to others. This all is manageable nowadays with the technology in the community of customers wherever they are. Best companies are engaging with their customers, and results will follow.

So these are the building blocks of the systems of engagement, there are of course more and more complex things in behind each of these areas, which we will touch on more deep in the book. Also remember that automation of these parts of systems of engagement around your customers is the base of a well functioning Revenue Growth Platform. We will soon walk through more on that and how you can succeed with your business. Stay tuned!

Written by: Sami Lampinen