What is CRM: The importance of CRM then vs. now


Zuletzt aktualisiert: 9.07.2024

Last updated: 02.01.2024

You often hear the abbreviation CRM in business. And while it is sometimes used in connection with tools or processes, some also use it as a synonym for sales or customer contact.

But what does the abbreviation CRM actually stand for and, more importantly, what else is hidden behind the term?

Because if you do it right as a company, you can use good CRM to build your entire business and help it continue to grow healthily.

So let's dive into the world of CRM with this article on the topic of "What is CRM?"

CRM abbreviation explained simply

The abbreviation CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management.

It is therefore about the relationship that companies maintain with their contacts and customers.

But of course there is much more to it than meets the eye at first glance.

This is because the relationship with contacts and customers in the business environment is complex and extensive.

Nowadays, interested parties have the opportunity to choose from an overabundance of advertising and services.

There are opportunities to attract the attention of potential customers at every turn.
This makes it all the more important to understand what else is hidden behind the term CRM:

What is CRM?

After all, the relationship between companies and their customers involves many departments and divisions working together.

Always with the aim of delivering the best possible customer experience.

Only then will a company be successful and grow in the long term.

In the general B2B environment, CRM therefore means dealing with existing contacts and customers.

And ideally, in this context, always the strengthening of this customer relationship.

An improvement in the customer relationship in connection with CRM can take place across departments in the following areas of the company:

What does CRM involve?

The 3 major business areas behind the term CRM are marketing, sales and customer service.

In marketing, prospective customers are attracted and made aware of your own brand.

An initial relationship is established between the company and prospective customers, so to speak.

And you try to arouse a specific need in the prospective customer.

In sales, contact with interested parties is expanded.

Direct communication takes place.

With the clear aim of initiating business and satisfying the needs of the prospective customer with our own product or service.

The sales department is then also responsible for concluding a business deal.

If the deal has been won and the business transaction is therefore positive, the actual customer relationship begins.

Depending on the industry, it is important to be as close to the customer as possible and offer them excellent service.

This can be, for example, onboarding to your own product or service or support until the expected result is achieved.

Customer service is about maintaining a close relationship with customers and assisting them with questions and problems.

Seamless communication across various communication channels is important.

And for this to succeed and for all departments to work hand in hand, a common customer support platform is needed: the CRM system.

CRM system - overview

A CRM system is the software used to bring together all contact and customer-oriented processes as well as all customer data in one place.

This makes it the heart of a company, so to speak.

Whereas CRM systems used to only be customer databases for sales, nowadays digitalization means that all processes from marketing, customer service, IT and the website can also be mapped in a CRM system.

A true 360-degree view of your customers and potential customers.

That's right: In a modern CRM system, you bring prospective customers into your CRM platform at a very early stage in their customer journey, play with them here with marketing, hand them over to your sales department and can then also offer them personalized customer service, as all the information is already bundled in one place.

The better this cycle is mapped in your CRM system, the faster it turns and that means better customer relationships and more sales for you.

A CRM system helps you to work more efficiently in your company and create transparency, which ultimately saves you costs and increases new sales potential.

What do you do in the CRM system?

Customer-oriented departments work together in the CRM system. With the aim of delivering the best possible customer experience.

In the CRM system, the marketing department can, for example, run campaigns, operate marketing automation, send newsletters or plan and publish social media posts.

The sales department can map the sales process in the CRM system, use sales automation, productivity tools such as meeting calendars, email templates, call guidelines or automation.

The service department can operate customer management based on the previously collected data and information, support customers via a portal, maintain a knowledge database, use a ticketing system and conduct customer satisfaction surveys.

All of these tools are available in a good, modern CRM system from a single platform.
And now you can find out which CRM systems can do this today.


CRM system - examples

The market for CRM systems is huge. This makes it all the more difficult to get a good overview and make the right decision.

In addition to many small CRM systems, which usually only cover sub-areas (such as Pipedrive, AgileCRM or 1CRM), there are CRM systems from the leading B2B software providers:


With Microsoft Dynamics, you get the CRM system of a real top dog in the B2B software environment.

It should be noted that the system has grown historically from a very old environment and therefore does not necessarily offer the modern infrastructure that we are used to from modern tools.

In addition, Microsoft Dynamics is often used exclusively by sales teams.

As a result, there is no direct connection with marketing and customer service.


With the Salesforce CRM system, you get a very complex platform with tools from marketing, sales and customer service.

Salesforce is the most established player for CRM systems and therefore the possibilities are also very far-reaching.

Implementation is very complicated and requires a great deal of customization.

For companies, this usually means very long implementation times and high software license costs and implementation costs.


A HubSpot CRM implementation offers the perfect combination of simplicity and benefits.

This is because HubSpot is built specifically for medium-sized companies that want to get the horsepower on the road with their new CRM system as quickly as possible.

With a good HubSpot partner, you can have the system up and running within 4-8 weeks and the first key users from marketing, sales and service can start working on the HubSpot platform.

The entire rollout can then be implemented again and again based on the newly collected data and results.

What is CRM - Summary

In summary, CRM is the development and strengthening of your relationship with contacts and customers.

It is important to use a modern CRM platform for this.

A CRM system for marketing, sales and service means you have all contact and customer data in one place and can use it centrally.

In a CRM migration, you switch from Excel spreadsheets or legacy systems to a modern CRM in a targeted manner.

If you have acquired a taste for a CRM system, book a free, no-obligation initial consultation with one of our CRM experts now: