How to Turn Total CRM into a Bonafide Data Machine

Data Machine

Stop taking the guesswork out of data. Instead find the value of unified data. Combining your customer relationship management (CRM) with other software, such as marketing and sales force automation (SFA), creates a better understanding of your customers, leads and sales cycle.

The deeper and more comprehensive the integration, the more sophisticated the options become for handling lead and customer data. As a result, lead management can become much more efficient. Opt-outs, opt-ins, hard bounces, and soft bounces can all have their own unique behaviors within this system.

For example, consider a lead leaving an invalid email address in the form. Maybe they just wanted to read free content, but their useless data is now floating around in the system. Perhaps the marketing automation (MA) is smart enough to mark it as invalid, but how does the rest of the system treat that data?

A well-integrated CRM system would be able to differentiate this invalid address from other data. It could mark it “Do Not Contact,” and segregate it from the rest of the data. This kind of list management is an important aspect of Total CRM integrations. It keeps the data clean and ensures the highest-quality information is available for the MA, SFA, and CRM users.

The more connected and available this data becomes, the greater the overall benefits for the organization will be. Both marketers and salespeople gain a greater perspective about the ways their actions impact the entire operation. This benefit allows them to create incredibly accurate models and long-term strategies that would have been impossible with siloed data. Therefore, the end users can adapt quickly, and bring a new level of flexibility to their jobs.

Full Integration Benefits

A fully integrated Total CRM might have a single sign-on, which allows salespeople to easily access the MA and CRM data of their leads and prospects. Therefore, they could create their own queries, build their own targeting, and even run their own campaigns.

One of the most obvious ways to gauge the depth of integration is viewing the dashboard. For instance, a salesperson who is currently logged into CRM may have a simple tab on his or her homepage that connects him or her to the marketing dashboard. This tab provides a window into the marketing team’s current priorities, and shows social- listening trends, details about new subscribers, click-through rates, and other details. This aggregate-level reporting has no shortage of uses for the sales team, even if it doesn’t directly relate to individual leads.


Think about the role a Total CRM implementation could play in revenue attribution. In a typical ecommerce pipeline, an ad brings a lead to a landing page, which features a free eBook that addresses a serious pain point in their business. The lead trades his or her contact information for that eBook, and the MA system converts that lead into an opportunity by updating the CRM system. The sales team makes contact and wins the opportunity. There are even cross-sells and upsells that data from the CRM supports.

Where did that sale really come from? Did it happen because the marketing team had an exceptionally convincing campaign that generated great leads? Or were those leads actually pretty typical? So, was it the sales team’s new scripts that actually won the opportunity? Does the eBook that the lead “bought” with his or her contact information correlate to high-scoring leads, increased conversions, and greater cross-sales?

These relationships can only be examined if each system is fully integrated with the others. Some individual MA, CRM, and SFA systems can use plugins to bring some of that functionality to their platform, but real insights require that the best available tools work in concert.

Looking for more information? Check out our Total CRM white paper.

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