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CRM Trends & Tutorials (2021) - FMT Consultants Inc.

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5 Ideas to Drive Sales Through Marketing Automation and Microsoft Dynamics 365
Marketing automation – the name really doesn’t do the technology justice. While it’s true that a marketing automation platform can help you automate marketing campaigns, these robust systems are capable of so much more and benefit many areas within an organization outside of marketing. Sales is one such beneficiary, particularly when marketing automation is paired with Microsoft Dynamics 365. In recent years, the internet and social media have changed buyer behavior, which has in turn changed how companies sell to their buyers. Consider these sales statistics: • Today’s buyers are anywhere from two-thirds to 90 percent of the way through the buying process before they reach out to a vendor. (Forrester Research) • 50 percent of qualified leads are not ready to purchase immediately. (Gleanster Research) • The average sales cycle has increased 22 percent over the past 5 years due to more decision makers in the buying process. (Sirius […]
4 Key Features of Saleforce Lightning
It has been a few years since Salesforce launched Lightning Experience. Lightning is Salesforce’s latest component-based framework developed for users with less programming experience. It is designed to maximize sales rep. productivity, complete with analytics and in-line intelligence that will drive sales precision. Since the launch, Salesforce has been encouraging its customers to migrate from Salesforce Classic to Lightning.   Why should you move to Lightning? There are two main reasons why you should consider migrating from Salesforce Classic to Lightning: 1) All users will eventually be transitioned over and 2) Lightning has significantly more power. To expand on point #1, Salesforce recently released this statement: “Starting in October 2019 with the Winter ’20 release, Salesforce will turn on Lightning Experience for all organizations on a rolling basis. When it’s turned on, standard profile users and custom profile users with the Lightning Experience User permission enabled will see the ‘Switch […]
4 Trends that Are Transforming CRM
As the number of businesses using Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems increases, the market becomes more competitive. Understanding and adopting the latest trends in CRM is crucial to stay ahead. Big players like Salesforce and Microsoft in the CRM scene are constantly researching and improving their solutions, which helps you and your business. On top of managing your organization’s customer interactions, CRM is now used to improve customer experience, increase sales and customer retention rate. CRM is, without any doubt, evolving at a rapid speed and transforming into a sophisticated solution.   4 key trends we are seeing in 2021   AI-Powered Voice Assistant Thanks to Artificial Intelligence, conversational CRM is becoming the focus of the CRM space. There are many capabilities that an AI-powered CRM offers such as text-based chatbots and face recognition. However, what we should pay most attention to is voice functionalities. CRM providers like Zoho and […]
SMB TechFest Spotlight - FMT Consultants
Technology choices matter. Applying new technology tools, or revising existing ones, requires a significant effort and sustained commitment to transformation. All, while continuing to run a business at top speed. Whether you work in operations, finance, IT… or all of those (and more), creating lasting value takes real work from people committed to building better business solutions one business at a time, every time. In this discussion between Eric Casazza, CEO at FMT Consultants, and Dave Siebert of SMB TechFest, we discuss advanced supply chain solutions ranging from Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), to Demand Planning, to Warehouse Management Systems (WMS). It’s not just about financial management software. New technology investments can pay real dividends in operational efficiencies, advanced manufacturing capabilities, and stronger distribution networks.     At FMT we have decades of experience working side-by-side with businesses looking to take the next step (or giant leap) forward using the right […]
Buyer 2.0 part one: Lane Departure Warning!
This is the first part of a three part deep dive guest post about Buyer 2.0 written by Darren Stordahl Recently, FMT attended an interesting partner conference at Microsoft campus in Redmond, where an excellent presenter shared his perspective on today’s “Buyer 2.0”. His assertion, was that in the modern supply chain, buyers are engaging much later in the evaluation cycle. Before ever speaking with the manufacturer, distributor or service-provider, this new buyer has self-educated and conducted significant anonymous research in order to become highly informed. Buyer 2.0 carries an industry-specific expectation, avoids risk, maintains broad social media connections, and has high expectations for service quality and speed to fulfillment. They Tweet. The impact of Buyer 2.0 on sequential and historical stage-based sales models includes lower conversion rates, prospects falling out of the funnel at unpredictable intervals, lack of connection/clarity into the customer relationship, and a reduction in perceived value […]
Buyer 2.0 part two: From Flat to Fantastic
This is the second part of a three part deep dive guest post about Buyer 2.0 written by Darren Stordahl Continued from Buyer 2.0 part one: Lane Departure Warning! Because the Microsoft conference took place in the gray and green Northwest, the messaging brought to mind an exceptional book on effective sales: “Les Schwab Pride in Performance: Keep It Going” (Les Schwab; Maverick publications). It’s a manageable biographical/business tome that describes the life and unique business philosophy of Northwest icon, Les Schwab. Starting in 1952, Les and his team built a retail distribution chain of tire stores in the western United States. Each of his stores followed a similar approach to customer service and sales: when a prospective customer pulled into the parking lot, the attendants sprinted to the car; Les Schwab also offered special promotions including free beef (from his ranch!) with the purchase of new tires; he offered […]
Buyer 2.0 part three: Where the Rubber Meets the Road
This is the third part of a three part deep dive guest post about Buyer 2.0 written by Darren Stordahl Continued from Buyer 2.0 part two: From Flat to Fantastic! Connecting these two potentially disparate discussions can help correct fractures in a modern engagement funnel and increase the relevance of experienced analog sales-people in a digital world. Buyer 2.0 won’t wait for you. They are probably tweeting your competition right now for pricing or configuration information. What can you do, with the tools and technology available, to stay relevant and build your business? Sprint to the Car: Make every effort to make a good first impression. Engage quickly. Be polite. Maintain focus and intensity throughout the ever-shortening sales cycle. For those in the customer engagement end of the technology spectrum, this means using both marketing automation and CRM efficiently, correctly, and with a prioritization for managing KPI’s associated to response […]
Top 3 Benefits in Moving Dynamics CRM On-Premise to D365
You might be wondering: Is your organization getting enough out of its CRM system? There are a couple reoccurring themes that we as FMT Consultants often encounter when working with our customers in moving Dynamics CRM On-Premise to D365. If you are considering the move for your CRM environment, you might want to pay attention to some of these factors as they are real opportunities for you to effectively modernize your business processes: 1. Customizations From Custom Entities to Workflows to Plugins to ISVs to XRM, chances are, you’ve got some level of customization going on in your CRM system. As long as you have CRM 2013 or later, cross your fingers, you’ll be able to upgrade customizations without issue: Version compatibility Solutions exported from an earlier version of Dynamics 365 can be imported into later versions as shown in the following chart. Upgrading without issue, unfortunately, is oftentimes not […]
New CRM Features in Dynamics 365 July 2017 9.0 Update
With the new Dynamics 365 July 2017 9.0 Update, Microsoft has rolled out several exciting new features and enhancement for CRM. In this article, we will review 3 of these features which can improve you Dynamics CRM: Unified Client Interface, LinkedIn Sales Navigator, and the Multiselect Option Set. 1. Dynamics 365 Unified Client Interface With the new Unified Client interface, users will be able to have a single experience across all different UI’s like Web, Mobile, Outlook & Tablet! This UCI will be rolled out first to the Business Edition & later on for the enterprise Edition! The idea behind this is that the era of web vs. mobile is over and now the UI will adapt to the screen in use. You will also have the same customization options in each. Content will be presented in a way that will reflow into different states of the control as the space available to it […]
Autosave Feature in Microsoft CRM
Back in 2013, Microsoft added a nifty Autosave feature to CRM 2013 during the Polaris or UR 12 release for CRM which is still here today in Microsoft Dynamics 365. How does it work? Essentially you don’t have to manually save your work anymore! Instead, every 30 seconds after a field changes and if you’re still on the form, the record is automatically saved to the server. The only time you will ever need to manually save a record again is when you first create it! Afterward, you never have to click on any save button ever again. Now you’re all wondering how one might add this Auto Save functionality to your Dynamics 365 CRM. Just follow these two simple steps: Go to the Dynamics 365 Menu and navigate to Settings > Administration > System Settings Under the General tab, on the first line, you will see “Enable autosave on […]
[Video] Nurture Leads & Build Customer Loyalty with Marketing Automation
  The relationship between buyers and businesses are changing, engaging your prospects at every stage of the buying cycle is now essential to closing more deals. Watch this video to discover how you can deliver customized, memorable experiences and start turning every lead into a loyal customer with marketing automation. We'll explore: What is it and who uses it Why marketing automation is an essential tool How to shorten your sales cycle with marketing automation If you want to learn more about how your organization can take advantage of marketing automation to help you keep prospects and customers better engaged, feel free to reach out to us by submitting the form below. We'd love to hear from you!
Still on Microsoft Dynamics CRM 20something?
If your organization is currently running an on-premise or hosted CRM deployment, it’s seriously time to start planning the move to Dynamics 365 on the Microsoft Cloud. Here are three reasons why the cloud version of CRM makes sense for you: You don’t want servers anymore If you’ve ever stood up an on-premise version of CRM before, you know that you’ll need at least a SQL Server and a Windows Application Server. The supported versions of SQL or Windows Server range from 2008R2 to 2016, you need to create service accounts for things like the VSS Writer Service and the Async Service—not to mention you’ll probably need the E-mail Router and Reporting Server Services set up. I haven’t even mentioned a single Account or Customer yet and there is already all this complexity that needs to be managed. With Dynamics 365, an organization can be provisioned literally in minutes and […]
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