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Microsoft Dynamics 365: Add some magic to your marketing

By Tess Parsons-Broome, Senior Marketing Executive | Published 28 Apr 2021

The technology revolution that has taken place over the past year means customers are interacting with businesses online more than ever. Therefore, it is vital to ensure you have an edge over your competitors when it comes to customer experience.

If you want to give your customers the best experience possible (which is of course what everyone wants!), having a great Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system can make the difference between an ok customer interaction and a great one that leaves a lasting impression.

At Select Technology, the marketing team have done just that by recently adopting Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Marketing. We’re newbies, so we are still learning, tweaking and adapting, but already we can see the positive effects and benefits on our activity and effectiveness, which will ultimately drive a great customer experience (we hope we’re already doing a good job of this!).

What is Microsoft Dynamics 365?

Microsoft Dynamics 365 is an intuitive CRM system that you can use for sales, marketing, finance and more. It allows your business to bring departments and processes together smoothly and effectively, while drawing continuous insights that inform your strategy moving forward. This helps you to connect with your customers to ensure they receive the best possible experience in a timely fashion. Check out this video from Microsoft to see how powerful the platform can be…

Why Dynamics?

There are many CRM systems out there that can be adopted by businesses, so what made Microsoft Dynamics 365 stand out of the crowd for us? We explore the reasons why Dynamics was the right choice for us.

Say no to application overload

Before making the move to Dynamics we were using various platforms, applications and systems for our marketing activity. For instance, we used Eventbrite for sign-ups to events and webinars, ConnectWise for our email campaigns and a WordPress plugin to bring leads from our website into the business.

All of these platforms are really useful – and some are even free – but nothing is connected, meaning our activity was siloed and disjointed. We weren’t getting many useful insights and we certainly couldn’t automate anything. Dynamics has changed that by allowing us to manage our email campaigns, lead generation capture, events and more all into one place.

Data is power

By migrating all of this into one dedicated CRM system we have gained much more insightful data. We can see where leads have come from or where someone has clicked a link in an email. This means we can be much more targeted. For instance, if a customer registers for an event on cybersecurity, we can follow up with them by telling them about our Dark Web Monitoring service via an email campaign.

This tailored approach means we can hone-in on what that customer is actually interested in rather than sending a blanket email out to everyone in our database, which can lead to customers unsubscribing, tuning out, or even worse, having a negative view of the brand or business. Dynamics enriches what you can do with your data and you could even automate this process – we’ll come on to this next.

Additionally, new contact data from sign-ups, registrations or ‘contact us’ forms are automatically added to our contacts database within Dynamics. Before, we had to lift the contact data from somewhere like Eventbrite and input it manually into our contact database. This is additional time and effort which you and your team could do without!

Optimising the customer journey

This leads me on to the overall customer journey. As I mentioned, Dynamics give you the ability to automate your customer journeys. This is something we are still working to get the most out of, but ultimately it means we can set up flows that tailor an experience for our contacts.

Whether that is to prompt a follow-up phone call 2 weeks after an initial enquiry, or sending a reminder email about a webinar that a contact has registered for, this offers a much richer and personal experience for our customers. Previously, we would have to remember to do this manually, which is open to human error (forgetting!), and takes valuable time and resources away from other tasks.

You can also make your content really impactful with the easy-to-use design tools. We can completely customise our email templates to feature the Select Technology colours, style and logos. The A/B testing feature allows us to test out different subject lines or content order to see which has the best results for opening and engagement. This helps us shape and improve our campaigns to optimise our customer experience.

All of this offers continuous insights, helping refine and adapt our communication.

Integrate with other Microsoft applications

So, what sets Dynamics apart from other CRM systems? Well, as with any Microsoft product, it integrates very nicely with all your other Microsoft applications if you’re on 365!

For example, when we are hosting a webinar, we set the event up within Dynamics; this generates a Live Event within Teams, triggers a customer journey that automatically sends out a confirmation email when someone registers and creates a calendar file within Outlook, as well as storing all the registration data. This seamless process allows for a much improved user experience – and is much easier for us to manage too.

What’s more, we have also used Power Automate to compliment our Dynamics processes. So, when someone registers on our website the data gets stored in Dynamics, and the automation means our sales team receive a notification in Teams along with the contact name and message so they can follow up on the lead. It’s (mostly) seamless, effective and efficient.

So, what else can Microsoft Dynamics be used for?

While we are using Dynamics for our marketing activities, it doesn’t stop there. There are Dynamics 365 products available for a number of different functions, including Sales, HR, Finance, Customer Service and Supply Chain. Learn more about what Dynamics has to offer.

If this has given you pause for thought and you think Dynamics could help your business work smarter, more productively and more effectively, get in touch.

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