What are some must have features in a personal CRM?
Relationships are a precious resource that matters to all of us. Whether it’s someone close or a business partner, these relationships are crucial. We all try our best to maintain these relationships, but it can become hard to keep up, especially when your life starts to get hectic from work or personal issues.
As things pile up, remembering important dates such as birthdays or anniversaries becomes more difficult. You may have written it down somewhere, but where? There’s no guarantee that you will remember the events and details you care about. And if you do, it may be a last-minute scramble to get a birthday gift, or write a thoughtful card. While those closest to us may forgive us, there are only so many times you can miss out before your relationships weaken.
Finding a way to keep in touch with everyone may seem impossible, but technology has provided us with an answer. Personal CRM’s have become a popular software solution for many users. These tools allow you to keep track of everyone in your life and remain in touch.
Of course, you can’t just choose any ordinary personal CRM. You will need to ensure that the platform you choose can provide you with everything to keep your contact information organized and up-to-date. It should have features that can notify you of upcoming events and when was the last time you spoke to someone on your contact list.
Knowing what type of features to look for in a personal CRM will help you choose the one that meets your needs.In this article, we’ll share more on some of the must-have features in personal relationship management software / personal CRM.
Contact management & consolidation
Contact management is the most necessary part of any personal CRM. The one reason you start with personal CRM is to have everyone on your contact list in a single place. Without the ability to consolidate your contacts, there is no point in getting a personal CRM. Fortunately, most of these Personal CRMs do have this feature, but not all of them have similar capabilities for managing contacts.
For example, you’ll want to make sure that whatever system you use is able to import from where your contacts currently reside. (Including LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, your existing phone contacts, and more). You’ll also want to make sure that your system is capable of storing contact information like names, addresses, and social media accounts in a searchable database. The best personal CRM platforms reduce and streamline contact data entry as much as possible.
After all, you most likely have your contacts scattered through various platforms aside from your phone's contact list. It’s very likely your phone contacts are also out-of-date with the rise of Facebook, LinkedIn, and more. Take the time to check out the layout and usability of the software to make sure that the platform makes sense to you.
Browser Extension & Social Media integration
Social media has now become a crucial part of most people's lives. In fact, over 3.6 billion people are using social media all over the world. There is a good chance you are using social media to keep up with all of the people in your life.
Popular business CRMs like Nimble and Copper use browser extensions to integrate with social media sites. Several Personal CRMs, including Dex, also offer the ability to integrate with and import from social networks.
Whether they be friends, family members, or business partners, knowing what’s going on in their lives allows you to remain up-to-date and reach out to them during significant events. For example, if one of them has landed their dream job and you notice their post on your social media feed, you can effortlessly congratulate them.
The personal CRM you choose needs to be able to integrate with your various social media platforms, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Twitter. Doing so will allow you to reach out to those on your contact list through various channels and remain up-to-date with the latest happenings in their life.
Do you remember the last time you interacted with someone on your contact list? For some contacts, your last interaction may be obvious, but there’s a good chance you can’t remember your last interactions with everyone. With how hectic a life can become, it’s easy to forget the last time you interacted with someone on your list and what that conversation was even about.
Fortunately, a well-made personal CRM will usually allow you to add notes and track the interaction history for people important to you on your contact list. You should be able to easily document your conversations with specific contacts, never forgetting where you left off. By having the ability to add these notes you can rely on a system to remember the important things from your last conversation. For example, you can write down the person’s food preferences, favorite restaurants to meet, or any additional valuable personal information.
Having the ability to note down information about your contact will be highly beneficial. It allows you to be thoughtful and show both personal and professional relationships that you care about what they have to say. Remembering important details means you can ensure that your relationships remain powerful enough to last as long as possible.
Aside from being able to have all of your contacts in a single place, knowing what upcoming tasks you have scheduled is also highly beneficial. There are many calendar tools out there, but having them attached to your personal CRM will benefit you more than you might think. If the personal CRM you’ve picked isn’t able to provide you with a way to attract with your calendar, it’s best to look for another.
Attaching your calendar will ensure you never miss out on any of these significant and upcoming events. With the rise of video calling, it’s even more common for both professional and personal catch-ups to happen virtually with calendar events. Having a robust calendar integration means you can see where you left off, with less work on your end.
When searching for a personal CRM, finding one that can connect your calendar will help you’ll remain up-to-date while on the go even when you forget to take notes.
The main reason to acquire a personal CRM should be to remain in touch with your contacts. However, if you have too many people in your contacts, it can become easy to forget the last time you spoke to them. To continue remaining in touch with your contacts, you want to ensure that you follow-up from time to time. But you also want to ensure that too much time hasn’t passed since you last spoke to them. The nature behind your relationship can cause the need for a follow-up to vary.
For example, if you’re talking with parents or family, you'll likely want to stay in contact with them every couple of days would be best. But if it’s a business partner or just a loose acquaintance, it’s probably fine to contact them every couple of months. If they are not someone you need to be in reach constantly, then a monthly follow-up should be enough to ensure your relationship is maintained well enough.
The personal CRM you choose should keep track of the last time you interacted with them and send you notifications of when enough time has passed from your last contact with them. That way, you can quickly send them a message to see how they are doing. Some personal CRMs may even allow you to create templates that can save you time setting up a follow-up.
Are there any special events coming up that you want to make sure you attend? Maybe it’s your sibling's birthday, an ex-colleague's first day, or one of your family members is graduating from high school?.
A personal CRM should have notifications that can keep you reminded about these upcoming events. These notifications will warn you ahead of time and allow you to prepare for these types of events. For example, if someone on your list is having a birthday coming up, the personal CRM should tell you of that upcoming event. That allows you to set aside some time to get a present and prepare yourself for the upcoming birthday party.
Forgetting one of these dates could severely impact the relationship between you and that individual, especially if you promised them to be there. Your personal CRM should essentially become your personal assistant who always remains aware of every upcoming importa date you have and sends you reminders in advance.
Email is still the most commonly used way to communicate to this day. You’re likely using emails to keep in touch with business partners and other associates close to you. Email is something that will never go away and will remain a crucial part of the communications landscape.
In fact, there were 4 billion email users in 2020, an amount that is expected to continue growing. With that in mind, you want to ensure that the personal CRM you choose can integrate with your email platform of choice. These days it's pretty common to see people use email accounts like Gmail, iCloud, Outlook, Yahoo, and more. Chances are, you have an email account with one of these platforms, maybe even more than one. Some people have an email account used for business purposes and another one for personal use.
Having a way to keep track of all your contacts from your various email accounts would save you up loads of time. The personal CRM you use should allow you to manage and segment your contacts list from these multiple accounts, and show you recent interactions from email. That way, you can know where your contacts are coming from and when they need to follow up.
Mobile Apps and Mobile Support
Mobile devices have become a crucial aspect of our daily lives. These days most of us have some type of mobile device. The introduction of mobile apps was also a massive game changer and has allowed people to rely on technology to help them manage their daily lives better. The personal CRM you choose should have a mobile app that you can download onto your mobile device. That way, you’ll be able to receive your reminders or conduct follow-ups while you are on the move.
Of course, with the different types of operating systems out there, you want to make sure the app version of your personal CRM works for devices you have. So, make sure it has an android and iOS version.
Security & Privacy
Security and privacy are common concerns for many people. With news headlines of companies having their systems hacked into, it would make sense to be cautious over your data. Social media networks often are funded by advertising and sharing of data with third-parties. For the average user, this should be cause for alarm as many have no idea how their data is being used.
The personal CRM you choose needs to take security and privacy seriously. If they are not doing everything they can to protect your information, it is best to find another platform that provides such safety. The data you add in a personal CRM is, well, personal. You don’t want to risk the possibility of someone reselling your data. This is especially true for personal CRM platforms that are owned by, or collaborate with, marketing and identity resolution platforms.
Personal CRM’s are highly effective tools that allow you to keep track of your various contacts in a single place. The convenience of these tools will ensure you continue to maintain your relationships even during the busiest times. No longer will you have to stress yourself out worrying about remembering all of the upcoming events and important details from your last interaction. With a personal CRM, you have a solution that can take that burden off your shoulders.
If you want to ensure the platform you keep meets your needs, keep all of the features we mentioned above in mind. In addition, if you’re looking for a tool that we’ve built to solve many of these areas, check out Dex today.