How Using AI in CRMs Can Boost Your Bottom Line

AI-powered customer relationship management solutions (CRMs) leverage machine learning, predictive analysis, and natural language processing—along with programming and training—to enhance the capability of CRMs.

The benefits of AI CRM solutions include better customer experience and service, cost and time savings, improved employee morale, and enhanced ability to grow a business. 

In a technical landscape where 50 percent of customer inquiries might be handled automatically,  an AI-powered CRM is a must for many organizations. Add to that the fact that 63 percent of businesses claim AI CRM solutions have improved performance significantly, and you can see why you might want to consider this type of technology for your agency. (WifiTalents)

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Use Cases for AI in CRMs

If you’re not yet convinced of the value of AI in CRM, consider some of the use cases below. 

They help you see how integrating artificial intelligence can help with generating leads, nurturing leads, and other critical marketing, sales, and customer service tasks. 

To Support Customer Self-Service

AI CRM integrations enable virtual assistants, chatbots, and other automated tools to support customers in managing routine tasks on their own. This can include finding answers to simple questions, scheduling appointments or deliveries, calculating prices, checking order status, and getting targeted recommendations. 

Removing these tedious tasks from human-powered customer service channels allows teams more time to handle complex customer needs or invest in additional solutions and marketing. 

To Streamline Communication for Customers

AI-powered chatbots can be on 24/7, providing instant responses to customer inquiries. More than 80 percent of consumers say they want immediate responses from brands to digital inquiries. Immediate is defined in this scenario as within 10 minutes (AdviceBridge).

With AI, you can achieve that level of response time without burning out your team or your labor budget. Well-programmed chatbots can handle many customer inquiries on their own and escalate more complex situations to human operators. Even if a customer has to wait until the next business day for that escalated response, they may be more satisfied having gotten some response at all in the meantime.

You can also use AI in CRM to ensure accurate, consistent responses to customers. AI tools can summarize a customer’s previous interactions for representatives or provide important data while on a call with a customer to help streamline the entire experience. 

Tip: Vendasta’s AI-powered chatbot greets website visitors, answers product questions, and immediately sends leads’ contact information for timely follow-up.AI CRM: AI-powered chatbot

As a Sales Forecasting Tool

AI can leverage historical sales data, customer behavior, market trends, and other information in your CRM system to predict future sales outcomes. AI predictive analysis is extremely impressive when it can base analyses on good data. 

Some sales forecasting benefits you might experience when incorporating AI CRM include:

  • Ability to identify data correlations and trends that human analysts might miss, leading to an understanding of micro trends that can spur sales
  • Understanding the likelihood of closing certain deals based on current data so you can make proactive changes in your approach
  • Knowing how best to allocate sales and customer service resources to nurture leads, support sales, and provide customer service as trends change 

To Support Targeted Marketing Campaigns

You can also combine the data in your CRM with AI marketing tools to create highly targeted marketing campaigns. AI can help you segment your audience, understand how to engage them with messaging or know where your audience might be online. 

It’s important to remember that AI-driven marketing does require human intervention though. Your teams must know how to act on the insights provided by AI or humanize AI content to ensure quality and brand voice are consistent. 

Benefits of AI in CRMs

The use cases above are only some of the ways you can benefit from AI for CRM. Here are some of the major advantages you can experience by integrating these types of solutions:

  • Improved customer satisfaction. Customer satisfaction is improved by faster responses, fewer queries or needs falling through the cracks, and more consistent messaging from your systems and teams. 
  • Increased sales revenues. When customers are more satisfied and they can make fast decisions based on accurate information and AI assistance, you typically see enhanced revenues. 
  • Enhanced productivity. Whether you want to leverage information in your CRM for optimized social marketing campaigns or ensure every customer has access to instant answers to their questions, AI can help you scale and improve productivity without investing in more staff. 
  • Better insights and decision-making. AI can pull data and insights from your CRM system you might not even realize exists. This is especially true if you want to leverage unstructured data from emails, call transcripts, and other communications. 

Tip: Vendasta’s CRM software helps you find, nurture, and convert prospects faster. With intelligent, advanced AI software, Vendasta analyzes data and extracts insights so you’ll know what prospects need before they do. AI CRM: Vendasta

Challenges of Using AI in CRMs

The integration of AI and CRM solutions is not without challenges, however. Some common obstacles organizations might face when using AI with CRM include:

  • Data privacy concerns. For AI to provide the types of benefits discussed above, it needs a lot of data. This opens the door to concerns about how data is collected, stored, and used. When using AI with CRM, you’re typically leveraging customer data housed in your system—and you may be sharing that data with integrated tools from outside vendors. It’s critical to be transparent about how you use and protect customer data and to demand the same from your vendors. 
  • Potential ethical concerns. Many people are concerned with the ethics of using AI because it leverages the work and creations of others. For instance, when making money with AI art, you have to consider how the AI is using artwork from others and whether it crosses copyright and other intellectual property right lines. That’s also true when you use AI to create content for marketing campaigns. 
  • User resistance to AI adoption. If you’re using AI in CRM to support your startup idea or want to encourage clients to adopt these processes, you might run into resistance. Many people are unsure of how to best integrate AI into their business processes and what it means for their employees and brand. 
  • Requirements for high-quality data. AI requires access to high-quality data to support accurate predictions and other outcomes. Before you implement AI and CRM integration, you may need to do some work to clean up the data in your CRM or other software. 

How to Manage Your Clients with AI in CRMs

If you’re ready to implement CRM AI solutions to help with customer service, social media marketing, and other tasks, here are some tips for doing so:

  • Ensure the solutions you choose are compatible with your existing CRM software and other platforms—and if you’re starting an agency from scratch, look for solutions that are compatible with each other.
  • Consider ways you can leverage the data in your CRM via AI to support targeted marketing and personalized customer service processes.
  • Get your team together and talk about routine tasks they do that take up a lot of time daily or weekly. Decide whether you can automate them with AI integration into your CRM.
  • Use AI to monitor the performance of your marketing, sales, and customer service processes. Consider creating a real-time dashboard where leadership can see KPIs delivered by automatic analysis.
  • Work with in-house and external technical resources to support privacy and data security.
  • Get customer feedback on AI interactions and processes to ensure that your solutions are meeting customer or client needs. 

What to Look for in AI CRM Tools

One of the easiest ways to invest in AI CRM solutions is via white-label software. However, as you research your options, consider the following factors to find AI for CRM options that are right for you.

  • Scalability. Don’t simply look for tools that meet your needs today. Consider the five-year plan for your agency. What services do you want to provide, how big will you be, and what types of clients will you work with? Look for AI and CRM tools that support that growth.
  • Ease of integration. Consider how easy it will be to integrate solutions with legacy platforms and existing processes. You may not have the time or budget to overall everything. 
  • Customization options and features. Talk to your team and consider getting customer feedback so you know what options and features you want in these solutions. 
  • Vendor reputation. Consider the reputation of the vendor you might work with. Read reviews, check listings with agencies such as the Better Business Bureau, and ask for references. 
  • Customer support. Ensure the software is supported in a manner that works for you. You may want someone you can call to help with integration and training, for instance. 
  • Data security. As previously mentioned, take time to ensure that everyone you work with takes data privacy seriously and has a plan to support security. 

AI for CRM Takeaways

AI CRM software is a great next step if you’re working to integrate marketing and technology tools. The automation and data options this type of integration affords can be game-changers for digital marketing and customer service alike. Exploring and embracing AI for CRM can help you gain a competitive edge in today’s dynamic business environment. 

About the Author

Lawrence Dy is the SEO Strategy Manager at Vendasta. His career spans from starting as a Jr. Copywriter in the automotive industry to becoming a Senior Editorial Content Manager in various digital marketing niches. Outside of work, Lawrence moonlights as a music producer/beatmaker and spends time with friends and family.

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