The Early Days
Derrick takes us back to the early days “It’s hard to believe we have been in business for 20 years. In the early days we used a T-card planning system to track our customers and sales – that sounds so dated now but was in effect our physical database. However, with business growing rapidly, we recognised this was not going to remain a practical solution.
Thankfully, on a visit to the London Boat Show 18 years ago, I spotted an advert for Maximizer CRM in a magazine I was reading. We checked the solution out on our return to South Africa, quickly made a decision and purchased the CRM from Maximizer’s South African Certified Solutions Provider, Camsoft and we haven’t looked back since.”
“Looking back on those early years, I would say we only used about 10% of Maximizer’s functionality – mainly as a contact database, which I believe is not uncommon with this kind of software.”
We were aware our CRM could provide additional value to the organization, but we just didn’t do the training or take the time to implement what we knew. I’m pleased to say we have completely changed that scenario around and now use about 80% of Maximizer’s functionality. This has significantly helped us make big improvements in different areas of the business.”
Building Business Value
In the early years, the Boating World team were busy establishing their brand, differentiating against competitors and building a strong customer base. They now have a substantial centralised database of over 4000 digital records of qualified clients, which is exceptional in their industry.
As Derrick explains “This would not have been possible without CRM. Maximizer has enhanced the business in many ways, including building company value. Apart from our sales stock, our main business asset is our structured CRM database consisting of suppliers, customers and prospects with associated histories, pipeline of sales opportunities and embedded business processes.
This means, in theory if in the future we were looking to sell the business, a potential buyer would have a proven structure and working practices in place to ‘open for business’ on day one, substantially increasing the worth of the company. Maximizer is an excellent value add tool in this regard.”
Process Efficiency & Productivity
The Boating World team now use Maximizer as their central business hub and platform for activity tracking across the whole business.
Most new enquiries come through their website. The team currently manually capture these within Maximizer and call them to qualify them in or out as prospective customers. Custom fields that have been easily set up in Maximizer allow the team to capture key qualifying information such as type of enquiry, timescale, location, required type and use of boat, number of cabins etc.
Hotlist Tasks are then set up to next contact the customer via their email platform with brochures etc and auto-saved to Maximizer – with email, documents and notes all recorded against the prospect record. The team then make follow up calls to check they have received the email and confirm next steps. Further notes and Hotlist Tasks are added for next steps.
As Derrick explains “This process has stopped any prospective clients falling through the cracks when we are inundated and busy. The information that we record really helps us home in on what the client is looking for. Maximizer is invaluable in this way.
We also use the Maximizer database to send out a monthly upmarket newsletter to our clients – this generates another great source of new leads for us to follow up. Our delivery and post sales activities are also mapped out, recorded and followed up using Maximizer. For example, we set up job cards for any servicing or issues reported with a boat, such as a broken bulge pump, steering fluid change or faulty hydraulics – with each item listed as Hotlist Tasks. The servicing team can easily see what tasks they need to chase up and complete, which works extremely well and ensures we maintain our high level of customer service and support.”
Ongoing CRM Investment
Derrick further expands “We take the application of our CRM very seriously. With the help, advice and excellent training seminars supplied by Camsoft, our Maximizer supplier, we continually review and look to see how CRM can help improve our business processes and performance.
All our employees attend the Maximizer CRM training sessions run by Camsoft, even flying down from Durban. This hands-on approach is invaluable and allows us to learn, taking notes, discuss and agree as a team, adoption of new business processes and Maximizer features and functions, ensuring all round buy-in, productivity efficiencies, value and success.”
One area, Boating World are currently improving, is their business management activities, such as performance monitoring, analysis and reporting. Knowing one of their weaknesses was the assessment of their sales from original lead, through to opportunity and closed sale, they have set up a series of dashboards and reports within Maximizer which provides easy access to vital business performance intelligence, allowing them to make better informed decisions and improvements.
They are now working on getting better integration between their website and Maximizer, so leads are automatically recorded in the CRM, negating the need for the current process of manual loading.
As Derrick adds “This is another productivity improvement we learnt at the last training session with Camsoft. Before we fully adopt this, we are reviewing how we eliminate any ‘non-productive’ leads to ensure our database remains of high quality.
We are also excited about using the new mobile app – we really love it! It’s so useful to have easy access to our address book, calendar, leads and sales opportunities and be able to add notes to customer records when on the go, especially when travelling overseas. We are looking forward to further development of the app and view this as the future for Maximizer on the move.”
Derrick finally adds “We are very happy with Maximizer and the great relationship we have with Camsoft. Maximizer has given us numerous business benefits and continues to add value, supporting ongoing business growth and success.
Maximizer has made our working process and flow more effective, which means we keep in touch with customers in a far better way. Our sales team is more productive and proactive leading to big and better sales. Whilst our after-sales services are being delivered effectively, ensuring continued excellent customer experience.
I would highly recommend Maximizer to any business looking to improve productivity and performance, customer engagement and business growth.
Find out for yourself why Maximizer CRM is proven and trusted by Boating World and by thousands of other companies around the world. Try us free for 30 days.