Make Your CRM A Successful Collaboration

As technology has evolved, so has CRM (Customer Relationship Management). Historically, CRM tended to focus on internal operational effectiveness. It was all about providing easier access to information for employees and ideally help promote collaboration between departments within the company. It was a little black book on steroids, designed to help store a company’s valuable contact data and it grew to include the ability to generate automatic follow ups and beyond.

Today’s CRM has to take into account social media, mobile marketing and more. CRM captures the attention of prospects with relevant content and makes sure that content is available via multiple channels. It’s an integrated customer experience via various touch-points. It’s a much more social CRM model, using blog posts, videos, podcasts, tweets and other social media posts to disseminate information, educate prospects, invite conversation and develop relationships.

CRM is not only for the “big” guys in business. Today, businesses can find the right fit for their budget and their strategic needs with software products that streamline everything. Software as a service (SaaS) has created an even playing field, allowing companies of all sizes to implement CRM tools and strategies at a much more reduced cost than was required in the past.

When you combine the current philosophy of social CRM and the right software package, you can have a match made in heaven. You have the process in place to help coordinate efforts, but you have the strategies that embrace the conversational nature of CRM that helps develop relationships. It is sort of a yin-yang thing. You want to balance the internal operational efforts with your outside lead development.

With today’s CRM, if you get a complaint on Facebook, you face it head on and contact the customer. You work out a solution. But it doesn’t end there. You make sure the practices and procedures are in place internally so that the issue doesn’t arise again. And, you may even turn the whole situation into a case study, versus yesteryear’s sweeping issues under the proverbial rug.

Look at the little things – talk to your current clients and prospects via your website blog by inviting comments, on your YouTube channel and other social media profiles. Ask and engage. What are their likes and dislikes? What are their suggestions? Thoughtful or stupid, they all may at least have a little merit.

In the end, successful CRM is all about a synchronistic collaboration – between sales, marketing, customer service, social media, and a great software platform. Every company (well, the ones that want to make money and stand the test of time) wants to develop strong, lasting relationships with their customers. And in order to do that, a company needs to understand their customers’ needs and behaviors. How can you cross-sell or upsell if you don’t fully understand your customer’s needs? You can’t.

You need all the pieces in place in order to succeed.

Learn more about interlinkONE’s CRM tool here. 

Improving Conversion Rates for Landing Pages – 5 Simple Tips

When building landing pages, the window of customer action is small. You need to craft your page to maximize the chances of the viewer doing whatever it is you want them to do, downloading a White Paper, subscribing to an eNewsletter, etc.

Here are five quick tips to make sure you are building an optimized landing page.

1. Less Is More

Don’t overburden your visitors. It is a challenge of all web pages to keep viewers engaged for more than a few seconds. Extraneous clutter and excessive questioning will drive prospects away. Request only the information you really need. And remember, white space can be your friend.

2. Write Airtight Text and Headlines

There won’t be a lot on your landing page, so each word you put down needs to pack a wallop. Use a captivating headline and text filled with buzzwords. And, as always, check your spelling and grammar. One mistake on a page with only 50 words will be immediately noticeable.

3. Offer No Escape

Okay, this is a little overly-dramatic. But remove all navigation bars or any buttons or links that may lead your visitor to any other page or site. If you get someone to check out the landing page, you want them to fill out the form.

4. Integrate Social Media

Having social media badges on your landing pages introduces legitimacy and the idea that other people really like the product or service you are offering. You can never have too many positive testimonials. And think about integrating a video as well – explaining the product or service while humanizing your brand as well.

5. Looks Matter

Don’t overlook design. A clunky, unsightly interface will turn away a potential client faster than anything. Keep it classy.


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Personalized URLs and Security Concerns

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This summer, the USPS is offering a discount to companies that include a QR Code on their mailings. Also, the QR Code must either point to a mobile-optimized personalized URL or a mobile-optimized storefront.

While personalized URLs were extremely “hot” a few years ago, they certainly have cooled off a bit recently. But they still have a place today in the marketing mix!

Getting Back in to the Personalized URL Game

If you have not sold a personalized URL or built one in a little while, there may be some open questions in your mind about them.

Today, I’d like to chat about personalized URLs and security for a bit.

As you try to decide whether you should use them, or while in the process of trying to convince a client to use personalized URLs, the item of whether they are secure may come up.

Concerns about Personalized URLs and Security

While many companies have embraced personalized URLs because they see the benefits of one-to-one marketing, others have hesitated to incorporate them into their promotional efforts out of security fears.

We primarily have seen this in specific industries, such as banking, healthcare, and others.

If you or your client is worried, there are a few practical things that can be done to address their concerns. Below are three items that we have heard over the years, along with ways that you can address them.

Worries About How Much Data is Exposed

One of the benefits of using a personalized URL is that you can pre-populate contact information on the landing page.

If the personalized URL includes a registration form or survey, pre-populating contact information in form fields can save time for the user and increase your response rate!

If the client is concerned about this, there are a few options:

  • Eliminate the pre-population of the form fields: The URL can still be personalized, and the landing page could even still greet them by First Name.
  • Include only fields on the form that are absolutely necessary for the response: We may be tempted to ask the user to give us everything — from their Twitter handle to their Cell Phone #. We might even have good intentions for asking for it (“We could use this data for future marketing opportunities!”).

    But if your client is worried about exposing too much information, than limit what fields you display and require. For example, if they are responding to the PURL to download a White Paper, perhaps the only field on the page is for entering an Email Address.

Simply Entering Another Name to Access Data

Most personalized URLs follow this format — [FirstName + LastName]

Thus, when I enter, the first page I see might greet me by name and present the pre-populated registration form.

Some companies might say, “Well, could Jason simply enter and see another person’s information?” In many cases of PURLs, the answer is Yes. Typing in that other name (that’s also a valid PURL for that campaign) would allow someone to see another person’s pre-populated registration form.

If you do not want that to happen, one option is to include an “Access Code” along with the personalized URL.

Thus, when I enter my personalized URL, I am greeted by a screen that requires me to enter a unique Access Code. Only then can I see my personalized page.

By doing that for each PURL that you generate, you will add a second-level for people that are trying to access personalized data.

Submitting Data over a Form

Many personalized URLs include Forms that ask people to provide and submit information.

Oftentimes, this is just Contact Information and answers to questions.

But if your client is concerned about protecting the data that is submitted, one option is to  utilize SSL.

In that case, the user would access their PURL at https://[FirstName + LastName], which would enable the landing page and form to use SSL encryption when submitting data.

Would you like more information?

I hope that you find these ideas helpful as you look for ways to improve the effectiveness of your marketing programs (or those of your clients)!

If you have any questions about personalized URLs and security or about the USPS Mobile Barcode Promotion, please contact our team today!


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What's New in iFlyMobi

iFlyMobi Logo: Build mobile websites!

Over the past few weeks, our development team has been hard at work on some big enhancements for iFlyMobi product.

In case you don’t know, iFlyMobi is an application that makes it very easy to build mobile websites. As the number of smartphone owners continues to grow, we think that companies of all sizes and types must take steps to reach the mobile audience.

I personally think that iFlyMobi rocks. And I’d love for you to feel the same way too.

Give it a try today!

We offer a 14-day free trial to let you experience the tool first-hand.

Below are some of the recent enhancements that have been added to iFlyMobi:

Organize the Layout of your Mobile Home Page

Our team has been taking steps to provide iFlyMobi users with more flexibility on the design and layout of their mobile websites.

We have recently released a feature that makes it very easy for our customers to control the sort order of all of the links on their mobile website. This includes Pages, External Links, and Blogs.

Learn how to use this feature today >>

Connect a Blog/RSS Feed to Your Mobile Website

There is no doubt that inbound marketing and content marketing continue to be hot topics among folks in the world of communications.

It certainly has proven to be very important for companies to have dynamic content on their website.

The same applies to a mobile website!

Thus, we have delivered enhancements that allow users to easily connect a Blog/RSS feed to their mobile website. Once they’ve made the connection, they can customize the name of their Blog, and then let our system do the work of updating the mobile website with fresh content from the Blog each day!

Learn how to use the Blog/RSS feature today >>

And More!

These are just a few of the powerful features that our iFlyMobi users can take advantage of.

Check out our Learn More page now to see what else you can do to reach the growing mobile audience!

Customer Tip: Add a File Upload field to your Landing Pages

Within ilinkONE Version 8's marketing software, users can set up surveys, registration pages, feedback forms, download entry points, and more through our Campaign Management and Landing Page features.
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Within that piece of our software, users can easily build Question & Answer forms for a variety of reasons. Most of our customers typically choose from Question Types such as:

  • Multiple Choice
  • Single Choice via Radio Buttons
  • Single Choice via Dropdowns
  • Open-Ended

But there is another option available that may assist you in your marketing efforts. That option allows you to create a field on a landing page that enables people to upload a file while they are filling out the form.

Using the File Upload Feature

If you are familiar with how to build campaigns and landing pages in our system, it is very easy for you to use the File Upload feature.

  • To create a File Upload field, you'll want to create/edit a Question for your campaign.
  • On the “Edit Question” page, set the Question Type to “Single – Open Line Text” and then check the box for the “Display as File Upload” field.

Screenshot from our ilinkONE Version 8 Marketing Software: Categorize a Question for File Upload

Once you've taken those simple steps, the ilinkONE Version 8 software do the rest of work.

Next time that you view the landing page that those questions are associated to, you will see your web browser's Upload File utility displayed with that question.

ilinkONE Version 8 - A landing page that has the Upload File field turned on.

The system will store the images on the FTP server. You will be able to access them by simply finding the folder associated to the Client that you built the campaign for.

We hope that you find this feature useful. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our Customer Support team!