Have you noticed that your customer retention rate has gone way down in the past few months? Are you worried about whether an unexpected new competitor could steal clients away from you?
Have you received customer feedback that leads you to believe your clients don’t feel valued, known on an individual level, or that they can’t seem to get an effective solution to their problems with your company?
If so, you need to improve your CCM strategy immediately.
In this post, we’ll fill you in on what CCM is, how it can help to improve your customer relationships, and what you should look for in an effective customer communication management system.
What Does CCM Stand For?
CCM is an acronym for Customer Communication Management. It’s a long term for a simple concept. In a nutshell, it’s the process of making sure the messages you send to your customers are congruent, complete and personalized.
CCM represents all the different ways that you communicate with your customers. This means through email, on your website, via snail mail, through different marketing channels, on social media, over the telephone—the list goes on.
The goal of an effective CCM system is to improve your overall customer communications no matter which kind of platforms you use. A good CCM strategy ensures that all communications are effectively created, delivered, stored, and of course, opened by your customers.
You can use CCM to help customers to renew their subscriptions with your company, make sure they pay their bills on time, tell them about new products and services you’re offering, and above all, to meet any of their customer service needs.But why is customer communication management so important, and how can it help to improve your business?
The Benefits of CCM Systems
There are countless reasons why you need to consider investing in a CCM system at your company. After all, companies lose roughly $75 billion every year because of poor customer communication and service.
Most businesses require customer communications management systems to handle large volumes of customer documents. By using platforms that allow for mass creation, production, and distribution of documents, companies from all different types of industries have dramatically improved the fluidity and efficiency of their customer correspondences.
Let’s take a look at how these comprehensive solutions will help you improve the customer experience and shorten your overall buying cycle. Here are five key benefits CCM systems can provide for your company:
1. It Improves the Customer Experience via Personalization
Did you know that about 86% of consumers say they’re willing to pay more if it means they receive a higher level of customer service? While you certainly want to provide as much one-on-one attention to your customers and leads as possible, you still need time and resources to manage your business.
A good CCM system will do the heavy lifting for you by giving your clients personalized, real-time assistance on the communication channel that they prefer. For example, it can keep records of the purchases clients have made in the past, so that you can recommend new products that are likely to interest them.
It makes it easy for customers to engage with your content and provides answers to common questions—meaning that customers won’t need to reach out to you directly as often.
It ensures that, even if your customer needs to speak with multiple representatives, your customer service agents can learn about why they’re reaching out, any information past agents have collected, and where they are in the resolution process without having to start over every time the customer contacts you.
The right customer communications system will even keep track of your clients’ preferred language, tone (formal or casual), and of course, the channel by which they prefer to be contacted.
2. It Shortens the Customer Journey
It can be difficult to know exactly how many touches you need to make with a lead before they convert.
However, we all understand that you’d like to make your sales cycle as short and as effective as possible. A CCM system can help with that—by offering your clients more control.
Features like fillable and interactive documents and forms allow for seamless data collection and communication between you and your customers.
When you no longer have to manually collect important data from clients, the buying process is shortened. Plus, the right customer communication system can also help you learn exactly where customers are getting lost on your website, so you can pinpoint the real issue and know when to provide assistance.
3. It Builds Cross-Department Efficiency
Have you ever wanted to make a quick adjustment to a document but didn’t have the access to do so? With a CCM system in place, authorized business leaders can create, edit and manage content themselves.
This means they don’t have to wait for an IT staff member to do the job for them.
The result? Organizational silos fall by the wayside. In the past, companies would designate different departments to handle specific client interactions. For instance, one might oversee email marketing while another handled print materials.
What followed was an inconsistent, disorganized, costly mess full of risks and potholes.
With a centralized customer communication management system, these messages are all in the same place. With the click of a button, you can make a change to one document and propagate it across the enterprise so everyone is looking at (and distributing) the same thing.
4. It Expedites Digital Transformation
Still working with outdated worksheets and brochures? Especially if you’re in the government, utilities, insurance or financial services sphere, this might be the case. These industries tend to leverage complex legacy systems even today because they’re full of mission-critical data.
The only problem?
Besides the fact that these machines are clunky, slow and outdated, they’re also designed for printer output only. This means they’re incapable of sending digital messages to your customers, who are meanwhile embracing online messaging.
The good news? Most CCM systems will sync with these core systems. From there, you can translate these templates into the dynamic and feature-rich documents that your clients want to see.
5. It Aids in Compliance Efforts
It’s critical that your documents meet rigorous compliance and quality standards before you release them for public consumption.
While you might have an in-house review team in place, how easy is it for them to all get on the same page, literally and figuratively? With a CCM system, all team members involved in this step can collaborate with ease.
You’ll all be working from the same version, tracking and organizing edits at every step. This helps relieve internal frustration and speeds the time-to-market.
It also provides a comprehensive, eagle-eye view of the entire communications package, giving reviewers access to every way your message will appear, whether that’s via text message, your website or a print copy.
This way, any edits made to one version can translate to the others. Catch a mistake in a print manual? You can fix it across the board, so the online version is also correct.
What features to Look for in a CCM System
With so many options for customer communication management tools, how can you choose the best one? Let’s discuss what you should look for in an effective CCM system. These are the central features your chosen solution needs to have:
1. Personalized Communications
Many companies have issues when it comes to customer information. This information is probably stored in multiple locations, which prevents businesses from crafting individual content based on information gathered from each customer.
By using a CCM system capable of retrieving and correlating data from multiple sources, this process of data integration is usually the first step in producing personalized communications.
Your customers want to be called by their names, to receive offers that will interest them as opposed to generalized mass mailings, and to feel like they’re a priority to a business.
A good customer communication management system helps you to know what to send customers based on their demographics, buying and account history, average spending, and even the time of day when they’re most likely to respond.
2. Omnichannel Communication
Times have changed, but has your company? Customers are no longer content with receiving correspondences from you (such as invoices, statements, letters, notifications, brochures, etc.) in their mailbox. Some documents are undeliverable on a cellphone, tablet, or computer, which prevents organizations from effectively reaching most of their customer bases.
If your company doesn’t have a CCM system to provide omnichannel engagement, you’re missing out. Communications must be tailored to meet the wants and needs of your customers. While some might prefer to continue receiving a bill from you in the mail, others might want to see their bill as a PDF in their email.
Simply put, companies using communications management systems to implement omnichannel delivery want to engage with their customers. As we know, engaged customers not only become great brand ambassadors, they spend more with your company.
Omnichannel communication is the ability to speak with customers seamlessly across multiple channels, and that can pick up where they left off in the customer journey no matter which channel they’re using.
3. High Volume Document Generation
If your company has to generate millions of documents a day, it certainly isn’t easy and it definitely isn’t cheap. You’re talking about the creation of individual documents for customers on-demand; without a CCM system, it’s almost impossible to do this successfully.
A communications management system that meets small to high volume document production demands enables you to create up to 100 million pages a day. You can create one-off documents through a document composition mode, but you can also create documents in batch, on-demand, or interactively, which helps your company save time, energy, and money.
4. Interactive Document Development Capabilities
Customer interactions need to be documented over time to avoid a misguided perception of customer needs. Why not make it easier for your customers to provide you with the information you need while giving them the satisfaction of knowing you actually care about their needs.
Interactive bills and statements take your communications to the next level: more informative, versatile, and easier to navigate than any ordinary PDF or Word document. Clickable documents record customer interactions and send them back to your CCM system, which analyzes the data and tailors marketing efforts based on predicted future behavior.
Interactive documents are channel-neutral, so you can start viewing a digital document on one device, then view on another wherever you left off. This is an invaluable tool for any business wanting to transcend boundaries.
Ready to Improve Your CCM System?
Now that you can answer questions like, “What does CCM stand for?”, understand why it’s such an important part of your business, and which are the central features it should have, it’s time to find a CCM system that works for you.
That’s where we come in.
We offer a comprehensive customer communication management system that excels in terms of personalization, delivery, automation, and engagement. Request a demo today and improve your corporate communications from the inside out.
CCM Buyer's Guide
Jump-start your Customer Communication Management ( CCM ) strategy and begin engaging your customers today with this free guide. Retain your customers and drive more revenue!