Ensure Success – Up the Ante with Customer Relationship Management

Service organizations are now spending day and night. Striving to maintain superior quality of service with the effort of gaining loyalty from customers. Have you ever looked at your competitor’s service and wondered whether they are doing things better than you? Customer relationship management has appeared frequently in many books and articles. It is one of those phrases that you cannot escape from hearing in business today. People are putting more emphasis on the digitalization of the world. Some may attribute that Customer Relationship Management is a way of computerizing your business. Or a series of tools and techniques. Yes, customer relationship management has to do with new technologies nowadays. And the competitive edge has to be paid with sufficient investment of time and money. 

In its simplest form Customer relationship management is an attitude. And mindset, a value that you place on your business and its relationship with its customers. So, if you want to make sure you are doing better than the next player in the game. CRM might be the leverage point with which you can differentiate your business from the others.

Why does CRM help?

Remember the leaky bucket? It is a very common way to explain the role of CRM. Companies are way too busy trying to reach new customers. They should also put efforts into maintaining their current customer base. So, you end up putting customers in a leaky bucket rather than preventing them from leaking away from you. Competition is high in all markets. So, approaching a new prospect is more costly than retaining the customer one already has. Satisfied customers who frequently come back should receive more attention from you. From the new customer who just came and bought your services as a tryout. Still, we do not mean to discourage businesses from getting new customers. How else would a business be able to grow, right?

The reasons why customer relationship management is important

68% of customers change product or service providers because they feel they do not receive enough attention and care. Good management of customer relationship helps companies treat customers as individuals rather than groups. CRM can go deeper to analyze or to study customer behaviour with the best produced products and services. Assumptions, which are based on previous experiences and cultural factors, that one carries about customers will also become more explicit.

People say that at some point when the cost of retaining customers is higher than acquiring a new one, the leaky bucket actually works best. The author personally believes that all companies will be in such a situation at some point. The only way to recognize that moment is when the companies invest more in customer relationship management and a CRM system.

Benefits of using a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system:

Is CRM system basically all about contact management? Well, actually CRM system can do more than that.

Customers want to use the products and services but they also want to be consulted more closely. In short, they want to receive more attention from a company. They trust as individuals rather than a grey mass. The interaction process between customers and the sale staff will create real relationships. Customer information stored smartly. The transaction process is recorded instead of rushing out taking note and then forgetting about it; the information on customer satisfaction, the productivity of a team or a specific employee is is updated in real-time. The fastest answers will help to gain the needed trust from the customers. CRM managers know and analyze each session each day. And also the work their employees are processing.

An image shows which customer relationship platform is the most popular

Very often, it confuses when you look up for CRM systems and have hundreds of choices. By Barry Schwartz: the more choices we have the less likely we are to be content with our decisions. Our aim is not to confuse you. So, only a few, but good, choices showed in the pie chart above. It is important to mention Hubspot’s CRM which is 100% free. It is extremely lightweight and really a good option. For small to midsize businesses that have never used a CRM before.

At the end of the day, there is no business if there are no customers. Loyalty is difficult to find these days. But if you manage to find and maintain a loyal customer you know you have struck gold. But keep in mind that customers are not clones of each other, each comes with different requirements for attention. So, like in so many situations, communication is key.

Find out more:


Why is it smart to do business in Tallinn?

How do you see yourself and your business company next year at this very same time? Wise decisions are valuable and important for your company. Ever had any thoughts that business functions don’t go smoothly enough? The digital environment is old and the progress seems to move at snail’s pace? But the future is now, so all that must be frustrating.

We should know since we (the authors) are located in Tallinn. This is one of the most or even the most digitally developed country in the world.

Estonia: a digitally developed country

What is it then that makes Estonia so advanced, tech-savvy and business-friendly?

The tiny North European country has learned hard lessons from its neighbours. The economy has not suffered from Brexit. The important indicators, such as GDP and unemployment rate, among many others are rather good compared to most of Europe. Brexit has so far meant great success for Estonia’s interests and business world. This because citizenship applications from Britain to Estonia have increased tenfold compared to the previous year. This is the result of the unique system. This system where anyone can apply for a digital e-citizenship of Estonia.  Even if you have never been anywhere near the country.

With e-residency, people all over the world are able to use Estonia’s digital services. Which in turn you’ll get cover for example bank services. Most of Europe is feeling the heat about the recent Brexit vote and wondering, waiting what will happen next.

Estonia keeps being one step ahead in the digitalization race.



Trendiest word ever: digital. This has been repeated as the most essential development in the future. For example, in Finland, the reactions have been far from the theories. Estonia, on the other hand, has been taking big steps and going forward much faster than any of its neighbours. This makes sense in a way. Tallinn has been the heart for business and start-ups, for hundreds of years. The banal Soviet decades are long gone but not forgotten.

Here is the thing:

There really is no magic behind the Estonian success. That is why it is time to make a shortlist of the key points. Why is business great in Estonia and what to expect when trying to make a living in the Pearl of Baltics?

1) Strength in innovation

One can be surprised to see how well new things are being put in place Estonia. It is as if there is no middle man slowing things down like in many other Western countries.

Yes, Estonia is an Ex-Soviet satellite state but exceeding that fact they have been able to balance themselves without mental devastation. While thriving with adaptability and resilience. These abilities are in high demand everywhere nowadays. Comparing present-day Estonia to the 90’s version. This can help you to realise that change is always possible, and also going to happen. It is all about how we change to it and take our chances.

There are those who stick to the old and don’t want to believe that the world is changing. Well, it never stopped changing but the nature of things is now faster than ever. Global market and the total youth of the concept of work might be a nightmare. Only to those who fear regeneration and future itself. In Estonia, the future has been seen as it should be: full of opportunities waiting to be seized.

For example, digitalization innovations, such as e-residency. These do not get any faster and easier for you for doing real business in Estonia! There are already over ten thousand e-residents and a lot of them have never even touched the Estonian soil. The system is globally unique. You see, this is the innovativeness. Estonian companies get more customers and grow faster than ever because of this and all the other amazing digital applications. The next level of internationalization has already seen daylight in the most advanced digital society in the world. Others might want to take a leaf out of their book and follow.

2) Cost-effectiveness

Seriously though, where else do you get to see things running so smoothly as in Estonia? They started from the bottom 25 years ago. When entering the world of independent and free nations. Celebrating its 25th year of complete freedom it is a must to raise a toast for Estonia at this point!

Since 1991 the economy has been steadily growing with praise from the economic world. A liberal economy policy is one key to growth. Not to mention the low-tax system. The 1/3 labour costs that companies face here compared to those of, for example, Finland or Sweden. This has not been unrecognised by the world’s biggest trading and banking organisations.  Such as the World Bank and the World Economic Forum. That praise Estonia is an absolutely great place for business. The small country has made its mark and showed to the giants that the nation in white, black and blue is the one to look up to.

3) Digitalization

Want to open a bank account in Estonia without actually being there physically? Possible! And so it is visiting Estonian library to read today’s paper among many other benefits when you get yourself an e-residency. Voting is also possible online and this e-Voting. This concept has been estimated to be 16 times cheaper compared to the traditional way of voting.

While most of the nations are still considering the possibilities and the fears of digital. In Estonia, it is a whole different story. You can never become successful if your way of surviving is all about imitating the ones you look up to. By the time you get to their level, they will already have moved on to bigger things. Hard work, research, and can-do-attitude will eventually play out fine for you.

A point has been reached where Estonia is the precursor in the digitalization. Identity, health, education, social services, you name it. What will you be a pioneer in?

This digital aspect is also the key point when considering a country to do business in. Things actually work with digital solutions and less paperwork. This means more action and time to concentrate on whatever you consider relevant. Fast, reliable, digital, paperless and less bureaucracy. Is this not the way you have always wanted to see the world go round since the first days of the internet?


Win the Race: Outsource!

Outsourcing business and getting new customers should be considered the most essential aspects of running a business. That is if you wish to be in the business the next decade as well. You know it strengthens the brand too, so why not do something about it? In the era of digital world, everything needs to move faster than ever, including decision-making.

There is no progress without a struggle. There is also plenty of fish in the sea but not that many sharks. A determined carnivore has instincts like no other as it recognizes the potential and sees what others do not – an opportunity.

Why now?

You know there is recognizable improvement happening in the global economy at the moment. In Estonia the past years have been economically splendid but only recently has this been the case in the northern neighbor Finland too as we can see from this article: Yes, it’s the coldest country in Western Europe but that does not mean the business is glacial too! Forget the past sluggish years, look forwards and act while you still can call yourself a forerunner. It’s time for the bigger bite.

How much do you really know about outsourcing?

An idea: the market has been divided once again and there is room for action. This will not last long since this is a fast-paced phase as the economy in the whole Europe grows. That is not the biggest news here, though. How to take advantage out of the situation? Outsource! Why? Scientific studies from different fields show us some important main reasons. These are always debatable but surely do not go wrong if one says they are:

  1. Helping to focus resources on the core activities
  2. Reducing costs
  3. Converting fixed costs to variable and
  4. Benefiting from suppliers’ investment and innovation.

Motivation can be divided into four categories: financial, technical, operational and political.

Steps to take into account:

You can outsource pretty much anything; Project management, customer service, meeting bookings, recruiting, you name it. What is it that you would like to do for the betterment of your business but do not have the time or the right people for?

The first step, however, cannot be done by anyone but Yourself: The Decision. After that configure a cunning plan with a proper outsourcing company and create more, better, bigger. But how to recognize THE outsourcing partner you want and should team up with?

Outsourcing is tempting and doable. If the motivation is to thrive in your business then why not focus on outsourcing some of your operations! You might have the ideas but not the adequate amount of hands to make things happen for you.

Things you should know!

Before choosing the tasks you wish to outsource make an observation at your business once again and identify your core values and strengths. The moment you decide to outsource may become the moment you put your business at risk. If you are the owner of the business, you should always keep this in mind. Why? Because you are hiring faceless staff. Because you are entitling strangers to take part in the future of your business. However, the increase in outsourcing has largely become acceptable. The simple reason is the reduction in cost, gaining flexibility, and access to resources and know-how that a company is unable to afford alone.

Wondering if the author is supporting or opposing outsourcing? The answer is that outsourcing may bring benefits, yet, there are always also risks. Thus choosing the right company to outsource to can be frustrating work.

Best outsourcing companies

The below checklist is our helping hand to you for finding the best outsourcing companies for you:

  1. Pick the right activities to outsource: Would you like to see your core know-how leaking? If the answer is no then to avoid outsourcing the area that may have the direct impact on your customers and business.
  2. Pick the right help: After identifying activities that need to be outsourced, the next task is to pick the right partner. There are many companies and freelancers offering the know-how that you need. Take a few moments to compare and contrast them, it costs you nothing but time. But time is money, you say. In the end, a little time is a small cost for finding the best outsourcing partner, who will bring value to your business.
  3. Consider all the costs: the main reason for outsourcing is that it would cost more for you to execute the operation yourself. Be wise with your choice, keep looking around for the best possible price (with the best possible quality).
  4. Preparing for a solid and transparent contract: Outsourcing takes place out of your sight, so it is important to keep track of the process and quality of the work. A contract should outline specifics about payment, the creative and other rights, expectations and roles, and outline an exit strategy. It establishes relationship and expectation with the provider and serves as a record of any activities beyond.

Any mistake can be fatal these days when the world is changing faster than we can adapt. Having a well-prepared plan for outsourcing will both help you prevent those fatal mistakes and boost your business’s performance. We hope the list will be of use for you when you consider outsourcing.

– Katrium Team


page 8

(Outsourcing, Team Work and Business Management. New York, US: Nova, 2009. ProQuest ebrary. Web. 2 September 2016.)