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The Art of Measuring Customer Relationship Management Programs

By Donna Morton, VP, Strategic Consulting. In the dynamic landscape of customer relationship management (CRM), measuring success goes beyond mere numbers. It’s about understanding trends, gaining insights, and crafting strategies for continued growth. Often, teams focus only on snapshots of specific data points or campaigns, but in the absence of trends, benchmarks, and goal posts, these can simply be numbers on a page.

To gain a true understanding of the customer base, a more comprehensive view of performance is needed to evaluate historical performance in context, gauge potential challenges against identified inflection points, and perform predictive modeling to enable an optimal future strategy for the client.

Here are some effective ways to measure CRM programs and find trends that drive meaningful results:

Define Clear Objectives

Begin by establishing clear objectives aligned with your business goals. Whether your goals are increasing site traffic, boosting conversion rates, reengaging lapsed customers, or enhancing customer satisfaction, defined goals and agreed metrics are paramount to be able to effectively measure success. In addition, understanding industry benchmarks can help identify high-level strengths and opportunities.  In the end, the focus of success should be on achieving established goals versus comparisons to competitors or industry.

Track Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)

Determine and monitor KPIs relevant to your CRM objectives. These may include new sign-ups, opt-in valid customers, click rates, customer lifetime value (CLV), retention rates, NPS scores, frequency, merchandise return rates, units per transaction and of course revenue. Agreement on how to define these metrics across the organization is critical to ensure all parties see published results as the source of truth. Establishing a regular cadence of reporting and review will ensure continued focus on established goals.

Understand Performance Across Channels

Often times, organizations are siloed and see channels as independent, but today’s consumer doesn’t live in a single channel.  While popular digital tools can measure online performance, be sure to also include offline sales to ensure a complete picture of customer performance. Zeta has developed a cross-channel attribution tool combining offline and online sales for a holistic view of owned and paid media channel performance which can open new insights into ROI and how to optimize paid media budgets.

Track Segmentation and Personalization

Understanding the value of various customer segments is also a key to success. Consider the best ways to segment your customer base based on engagement, shopping behavior, shared preferences, or product affinities. Utilize the segments to assess personalized communications and offerings, to improve engagement and drive better results. Adding data sources can further refine customer segments. Zeta Data Cloud is an excellent data enrichment source providing more signals like behavioral interest, competitor transactions, demographics, financial indicators, and visitation records. Test and learn matrices permit focus on specific factors and is an iterative process that drives continued learning.

Model Performance

If you have predictive models in place, ensure you continue to validate performance and ensure they are aligned to stated goals.  Models should not be viewed as “set it and forget it”. As customer trends and brands change over time, models need to be recalibrated to ensure best performance.  Annual review and validation are important to ensure continued usage aligns with stated goals.

At the end of the day, measuring CRM programs and identifying trends requires a strategic approach, deriving insights, leveraging analytics tools, and setting clear goals. Through implementing these effective practices, organizations can optimize their CRM initiatives and drive sustainable growth across their customer landscape.

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