• Popular CRM software features are set to evolve faster in 2019, than ever previously
  • Traditional ways of collecting customer data face challenges posed by new legislation such as GDPR
  • Changing social media trends may require customer relationship management to start switching emphasis from specific social media platforms.

The Changing Face of Customer Relationship Managementin 2019

The world of customer relationship management is changing. In 2017, a study by Forrester’s found that when implemented correctly, the right CRM tools can result in 245% ROI. In support of this claim, the CRM software market has experienced explosive growth over 2018.

  • The CRM software industry is forecast to reach over $80 billion in turnover by 2025
  • 91% of businesses with 11 or more employees are already using customer relationship management software
  • 74% of enterprises report significant improvements in customer relations after investing in CRM software

However, businesses and CRM software vendors will also face several unique challenges in 2019.

GDPR & Customer Relations in 2019

In September 2018, UK digital marketing agency Everything DM LTD became the first digital marketing agency in Europe to be fined under the EU’s new general data protection regulation (GDPR).

What Happened?

GDPR came into force on May 25th, 2018. The legislation prohibits companies from sending unsolicited communications to EU citizens in any way. Everything DM did not comply with GDPR. Specifically, by sending 1.42 million unsolicited emails in 2018, via their CRM platform.

How are CRM Software Users Affected?

GDPR isn’t a problem for CRM software vendors per se. However, businesses using any customer relationship management software need to ensure GDPR compliance.

  • When gathering personally identifiable information such as email addresses, businesses need to prove that they have the explicit consent from individuals to receive future communications
  • Consumer information stored in marketing databases needs to be stored securely
  • Individuals must be able to request retrieval and removal of personal information at any time

Changing Social Media Trends in 2019

As well as GDPR, CRM users in 2019 need to start taking note of the changing social media landscape. In countries like South Africa, instant messaging apps like WhatsApp have already usurped Facebook as the biggest social media platform by market share.

For the most part, consumer preference for IM based apps over traditional social media platforms is being driven by millennials. Specifically, younger people who place a strong emphasis on instant 2-way communication with brands.

  • CRM based SMS marketing will see a resurgence in 2019,as more  millennials seek to communicatedirectly with brands
  • More businesses will start evolving content marketingstrategies in 2019, to cater to WhatsApp and other IM users
  • Chatbots on social media platforms like Facebook willbecome more commonplace, as more consumers use traditional social mediaplatforms as customer service gateways

Must-Have CRM Software Features for 2019

As well as instant 2-way communication with brands, millennials increasingly expect to be served dynamic web content.

Thankfully, CRM solutions offered by the likes of Flexie already make this possible. Take Flexie for a test drive for just $1 for a no-obligation 14-day trial period.

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