Not Just Another 3 Letter Marketing Term
Entrepreneur Tony Hsieh once said, “Customer service shouldn't just be a department, it should be the entire company.” Even if a business has a great product or service to offer, they will ultimately fail if they do not deliver it properly.
So what’s the best way for a company to make sure they’re properly managing their relationships with their customers?
Pen and paper? Maybe if it’s 1908.
Rolodex? Maybe if it’s 1958.
Spreadsheets? Maybe if it’s 1988.
Today, successful businesses use CRMs. (customer relationship management systems). But what exactly are CRMs, and what’s the good, the bad, and the ugly?
ChatGPT, do your thang…
Step 1: Basic Prompts
Prompt: “Explain what a CRM does as if you were talking to a child”
The best teachers are those which can take complex concepts and break them down into simple, easy-to-understand concepts without losing the overall meaning. Let’s see how good ChatGPT is.
These answers definitely had the vibe of a CMO brought in for career day to talk to a 3rd grade class. ChatGPT did a good job of getting across the purpose of CRMs (“helps businesses keep track of the people they know”; “companies can make sure they’re talking to the right people about the right things”), without making it too complicated.
Prompt: “What are the benefits of a CRM? What are the drawbacks of a CRM? Use short bullet points.”
I want all the good stuff and all the bad stuff, ChatGPT. If I can’t handle CRMs at their worst, then I don’t deserve them at their best.
Side note: I had to amend the prompt to ask for short bullet points because ChatGPT kept writing me a novel.
- Improved customer experience
- Increased revenue
- More targeted campaigns
- Better team communication
- Better customer retention
- Difficulty of use
- Data privacy concerns
- Loss of personal touch
Prompt: “What are some characteristics of a good CRM?”
Although similar to the last question, I want to see more specifics on what a good CRM prioritizes.
Here are qualities good CRMs have according to ChatGPT….
- User-friendly: If it’s not easy to use, then it won’t be fully adopted by all team members
- Customizable: Built to fit the unique needs of each business
- Scalable: System performance cannot suffer when there is growth
- Security: Protecting customer info is job #1
Prompt: “What are some characteristics of a bad CRM?”
How do you know if your C-R-M is B-A-D? Let’s find out….
Go home CRM, you’re drunk.
If your CRM is difficult to use, can't integrate with other software to save its life, is not secure, and still, after all this, has the gall to be expensive, then kick it to the curb.
After that, get HubSpot. ChatGPT didn't say so, but I did.
Step 2: Digging Deeper
Prompt: “Is a spreadsheet a CRM? Why or why not?”
Spreadsheets can be used to organize customer data. Does that make them a CRM? What say you, ChatGPT?
Basically, although a spreadsheet can organize customer information, it lacks the more advanced options of a true CRM (managing pipelines, tracking customer interactions, automating tasks).
Side note: ChatGPT seems pretty consistent with this answer, but if you type this exact question into Google, the top response is, “ you can use a spreadsheet as your CRM—if you're used to using a spreadsheet as a database. Let's not get lost in technicalities, though. A CRM is a database of your customers' information”. A somewhat different opinion between the two.
Prompt: “What are some CRM best practices?”
Although some CRMs are more highly rated than others, what are some steps a company can take to maximize the performance of any CRM?
How to win with your CRM: Understand the needs of your customers, set clear goals, choose a CRM that can help accomplish those goals, train your team properly, automation=streamlined processes, and use data to spot trends and patterns.
Prompt: “Which CRMs are best for small businesses? Which are best for large businesses?”
I have a hunch of how ChatGPT will answer this question, but let’s just try anyway….
No surprise here. For the record, HubSpot as the first response for small businesses and Salesforce for large ones was the case for about 10 straight regenerations.
Prompt: “What is involved in a CRM implementation?”
If you’re just getting into the CRM game, what can you expect right out of the gate?
Cliff Notes version: Know what you want, pick the right CRM for your needs, move all of your customer data over (data migration), train employees, test, improve.
Prompt: “Is it possible for a large company to operate efficiently without any sort of a CRM system?”
I feel like ChatGPT is politely going to say this is a terrible idea.
ChatGPT basically took 5 paragraphs to say: You can exist as a large company without a CRM in the same way that a car can technically race with one tire. You can maybe, sort of, kind of do it…but why would you?
Prompt: “Which features for CRMs will be added in the next ten years?”
Do your best Doc Brown impression, ChatGPT.
I love how ChatGPT always whines that it can't predict the future for questions like this…but then it predicts the future anyway.
According to ChatGPT, we can look forward to more advanced AI (better chatbots), better integrations, augmented reality, and better security.
Step 3: No More Boring Prompts
Prompt: “What superhero best represents the power of CRMs?”
Is there a superhero which best captures all that CRM’s bring to the table? I’ll be impressed if it’s the same answer twice.
We’ll call Iron Man the winner since he got two consecutive shout outs. The reliance on technology and data seemed to be the biggest reasons. Tony Stark seems like he'd be a CRM man.
Prompt: “If all CRMs were animals, which CRM would be a lion? Which would be a bear? Which would be a snake? Which would be a whale? Which would be a sloth?”
This one is sure to cause some hurt feelings…future apologies to the “sloth” CRM.
ChatGPT gives top billing to Salesforce, but also acknowledges the up and comer, HubSpot. (although G2 would say HubSpot already came, saw, and conquered).
I do find it amusing that out of all the CRMs in existence, Insightly somehow got sloth both times.
Prompt: “A lawyer must defend CRMs from the charge that they are too confusing to use. What is their closing argument?”
In an earlier ChatGPT response, “difficulty of use” was listed as one of the drawbacks of CRMs.
If I was on the jury, I’m not sure I would be convinced by this. ChatGPT didn’t really trip all over itself to say how easy CRM’s are to use, but it did mention how essential they are, and that their intuitive and customizable nature can help with the learning curve. We’ll go with a hung jury.
The Final Word
If you’re a business, then you need customers. If you have customers, then you need a CRM. If you need a CRM, then you probably have some questions. If you have questions about CRM’s, then ChatGPT can help.