Among the alphabet soup of technology names and acronyms, customer communications management (CCM) and customer relationship management (CRM) do sound an awful lot alike. They are both processes for interacting with prospects and clients. However, each excels at different parts of the customer journey.
The sweet spot for customer relationship management is managing contacts and the sales process, starting with leads through contracts, especially in business-to-business settings. CRM solutions also help coordinate and manage marketing, customer service, technical support and digital commerce, according to Gartner.
Customer communications management focuses on building and executing strategic communications across channels to engage an infinite number of customers. These enterprise communications cover a range of types and purposes, including transactional, recurring, compliance-related and customer service, and provide important touchpoints all along the customer journey from marketing materials and reservation confirmations to credit correspondence such as adverse action letters, billing statements and payment reminders.
The need for tech solutions
Software is the key to executing both CRM and CCM more effectively and efficiently. CRM technologies such as Salesforce provide a solution for tracking and automating many of the specific steps to nurture leads and convert them into sales, then provide ongoing service and support for the lifecycle of the customer.
In contrast, CCM software automates and streamlines the development and distribution of customer communications while also offering many ways to customize both content and delivery to cater to customer preferences. In both cases, leveraging customer data makes it possible to personalize interactions to deliver a better customer experience.
In fact, CRM systems are often the data source that drive CCM automation. Conversely, CCM solutions can deliver back to the CRM a record of the customer contact through real-time APIs or a batch file process.
From software to platforms
As companies seek to digitally transform their business operations and break down silos to better coordinate interactions with customers, they are increasingly moving from individual software solutions to platforms that offer more built-in capabilities.
Nordis, too, has been steadily expanding the Expresso platform to seamlessly link to payment systems and channels, including ExpressoPay electronic bill presentment and payments solution, ExpressoWallet and most recently, Mastercard Bill Pay Exchange, which aims to revolutionize online bank bill pay.
For vacation ownership and property management companies, ExpressoVote simplifies homeowner association elections and governance, enabling easy management of the entire election cycle from ballots and other election materials to electronic, in-person and mailed voting, plus tabulation and third-party results certification.
Unique among major CCM companies, or CRM providers for that matter, Nordis also integrates document composition with print and electronic production and distribution through its Expresso platform. It empowers companies to control and complete the entire communications process, including document composition, delivery channel execution and management, and document archive and reporting, all from a single dashboard and vendor.
Given their power, CCM and CRM solutions are among the most important operating platforms that companies can adopt today and often complement one another. As Ronnie explains in his Viewpoint, which you can read here, Nordis is moving to Salesforce to better support our clients. But no CRM system can do what Expresso does, so we’re keeping those key functions and capabilities with the home team.
If you have questions about leveraging the growing Expresso platform, we would be glad to help. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.