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Discussion with Benjamin on the secrets of an effective CRM

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Benjamin is one of the latest additions to Tinext Western Switzerland team and an expert when it comes to Salesforce.

His atypical career path is worth a few minutes of our time.

From journalism school to marketing and communications manager

Benjamin first studied journalism, followed by a degree in multimedia and a degree in international management, with a specialization in marketing.

He then entered the professional world and experienced different types of positions: marketing assistant in an engraving machines company, webmaster in an agricultural cooperative. Then he took a position as marketing and communication manager in an explosives company and as marketing manager in a business school.

That's when he discovered Customer Relationship Management (CRM).

His first steps with Salesforce

After his first steps in marketing, Benjamin moved on to become a communications project manager in an agency, where he also worked on corporate strategy. Then he experimented with inbound marketing in a Hubspot agency, followed by an industrial cleaning company in Reims. That's where he discovered Salesforce.

He then had the opportunity to train on the tool and found himself skilled in functional analysis. He was in charge of working on the whole process of data distribution via the CRM. The objective was to define data common to all entities of the company to help them better communicate and share information.

Curious and willing to learn, he learned how to manage Salesforce.

Interview - Benjamin takes us inside the Salesforce tool

In a passionate discussion about his favorite tool, Benjamin revealed everything a company should know when choosing a CRM tool. He took the time to answer our questions.

  • What do you think is the advantage of knowing both digital marketing and CRM?

In the professional world, marketing and sales teams do not communicate enough. My knowledge of both fields is a great strength. It allows me to have an analytical approach to data, an ROI approach, customer-centric to optimize the internal teams' processes while improving the customer experience.

I love the links I can create between my former activity and my new one!

  • What do you like most about being a Salesforce expert?

What I enjoy most is understanding how companies operate, the path that leads them to their goals.

I need to see how companies envision their future in order to provide valuable solutions.

  • What are your first steps before implementing Salesforce in a company?

The first step is to understand the specifics of the company in order to be able to improve its processes. To do that, I examine the software and technologies used.

Based on this, I can recommend a solution that integrates digital technology and simplifies processes. Of course, without ever forgetting the " real world ": there is no digital without humans.

  • Can you explain why it is important to integrate a CRM into your company?

Today's customers expect a personalized and privileged relationship. We need to know their name, what they have ordered, the constraints they have encountered, suggest the right contacts, know how to anticipate their needs, and know their purchasing frequency.

Let's take the example of a car. If the customer changes his vehicle every 2 years, communication must be initiated after 18 months. And without CRM, the company does not have the means to know its customers as precisely as it could.

If there is no tool to do this job properly, hours are wasted on prospecting and reporting. In the end, the company spends more time looking for information and processing it than taking care of its customers or reaching its objectives.

  • Do you have an example of Salesforce integration in a company that you would like to share with us?

I recently worked with a recruiting agency to help them with their digital transformation. I can say without exaggeration that this implementation changed the company's life.

By connecting the CRM to their website, the recruitment process has been greatly improved. The forms are fully automated - candidate profile, CV, cover letter - and arrive directly in the CRM.

If the profile is not suitable, then it goes into the database. If, on the other hand, the profile is suitable, it enters the interview process, and the candidate is sent to the hiring company. The boss can receive a precise report. Finally, the file is filed in the database of "placed" candidates.

By identifying the needs and installing the right tools, the time spent by the recruiters on data entry and management has been reduced by a factor of 4!

  • If a company has already implemented a CRM solution, you can also help make improvements and train the teams. Do you have a relevant example to share with us?

I immediately think of this company in the healthcare field that manufactures automatic medicine cabinets for drugs.

When I analyzed how they had implemented Salesforce CRM, I immediately noticed small mistakes that had a big impact on the workforce:

  • No adaptation to local business cultures, lack of personalization 
  • Mixed data across all business units worldwide.

As a result, the user adoption rate in the French subsidiaries was close to zero. They didn't understand what they were supposed to do and why.

So we recreated a personalized space for the French sales representatives. My goal in these situations is to simplify the tool and train the users.

The feedback was very positive, I received thanks from the sales teams who now understand the usefulness of this tool.

  • In your opinion, at what point in the company's development should a CRM tool be integrated? And for which business size?

It should be the first tool to be used, just like the mailbox and the cell phone.

Whatever the size of the company, from 3 employees to 10'000 and more, a CRM such as Salesforce is recommended. It will then be built little by little, at the pace of the company: new employees, new clients, new projects, ...

There are different license levels. For companies that are just starting out, it may seem expensive, but everything can be customized. The integrations are progressive, as the needs grow.

In the end, it represents a significant gain in productivity.