Ever since CRM software was developed, a lot of small business owners have been wondering if it is worth the cost. CRM stands for “customer relationship management,” and it’s basically a tool that helps you manage your interactions with customers. CRMs are designed to help businesses grow their customer base by making sure they can stay in touch with their current customers while also acquiring new ones through marketing strategies. In this article, we’ll discuss what CRMs offer to photographers and how they can use them to manage all aspects of their photography business!
What Is CRM for Photographers?
CRM software is a business tool that assists companies in managing their interactions with customers. CRMs are designed to help businesses grow by creating and implementing marketing strategies, as well as staying up-to-date on the needs of current customers while also acquiring new ones. CRMs serve many different functions for your photography company:
- customer Relationship Management Automatically track customer activity;
- store client information such as billing address, purchase history, etc.;
- create workflows to remind you about important tasks or follow up items like sending thank you cards after shoots;
- improve communication between team members within one centralized location (e.g., if multiple people from your studio respond to clients).
- Marketing Extend the reach of photo sessions through email campaigns targeted at existing contacts who may not have booked sessions recently or ever;
- track customer interactions and purchases to better understand what marketing efforts are working and which ones need to be tweaked or eliminated;
- keep a pulse on the competition by tracking their social media activity.
- Business Administration & Accounting Keep track of expenses related to photo shoots, such as props, models, session location rental fees, cost of goods sold (COGS), etc.;
- generate invoices and estimates for services rendered; manage payments received from customers;
- automatically calculate sales tax owed on transactions depending on your locale.
So now that you know all about CRMs and what they can do for your photography business, how do you decide which one is right for you?
How Many Users Will Need CRM Access?
CRMs can be installed on a single computer or accessed via an online account. If you have only one photographer working out of your studio, then having CRM software installed locally may be fine for you.
However, if your business is larger and operates with multiple users simultaneously (maybe even from different locations), CRMs that require installation will not work for this type of setup – instead, consider CRMs that offer access through an online portal so all employees can log in to the same account at any time using their own username/password combination.
Best CRMs For Photographers
While there are a lot of CRM software packages available on the market, it can be difficult to sift through them all and find one that’s right for your photography business. Some features may not apply while others could prove invaluable – in order to make sure you’re investing in CRMs that will truly help grow your photography company without breaking the bank, consider these factors when weighing which CRM is best for you:
Price: price often dictates what level of service or number of users you get with each package; however, if CRMs offer limited functionality at their high end tiers but charge an arm-and-a-leg per user beyond a certain threshold (like 20), this might not be worth it either! Evaluate what you need and how many users will require access before making a decision.
Ease of Use: CRMs can be extremely powerful tools, but if they’re difficult to navigate or use, you’ll likely not get the most out of them. Make sure any CRM you consider offers an intuitive interface that makes it easy for you to add new contacts, create custom fields and track interactions over time.
Customer Support: as with anything else technology-related, things can go wrong – especially when your CRM is integrated with other software programs used in your photography business. When looking for a CRM, find one that has robust customer support options like telephone help lines, FAQs/knowledgebase and live chat so you’re able to get the help you need when you need it.
Now that you know what to look for, take a closer look at some of the CRMs we feel are best suited for photographers:
Zoho CRM: this CRM is popular among small businesses and freelancers because it’s affordable (starts at $12/month) and offers a wide range of features, including invoicing, lead tracking and customer management. It can be accessed online or installed on your computer.
Salesforce CRM: Salesforce is one of the most popular CRMs available and is geared towards larger businesses with more complex needs. It has an intuitive interface, robust customer support options and starts at $25/month per user.
Highrise CRM: Highrise is unique in that it’s not a traditional CRM – rather, it was built from the ground up to be an add-on service for Basecamp. If you’re already using this project management tool and like how simple and intuitive their interface is, then consider adding on CRM services with Highrise; pricing ranges from $24/month per user for 25 contacts or less to around $100/month if you need more than 200 users (pricing varies based on number of data fields).
SmarterQueue: SmarterQueue has been designed with photographers in mind because its focus is managing interactions within your inbox. It works seamlessly with Gmail & Google Apps accounts so can easily track engagement through email without any extra work. It’s easy to install and offers a free trial so you can see if it works for you before committing to a monthly or annual plan.
In conclusion, there is no one best CRM software package that will be right for every business – instead, consider what your photography company needs from its CRM (such as Ease of Use & Price) and then go from there!