CRM for Investor Relations: Top 5 Best Solutions
It never ceases to amaze me, how many companies do not incorporate customer relationship management (CRM) software for their investor relations department.
And no, MailChimp IS NOT A CRM.
The reality is that you need a CRM for investor relations, it is just a basic requirement.
There are some simple, basic materials that every IR professional needs when for each company; a simple corporate snapshot, an effective powerpoint presentation, well-designed investor website, a CEO interview, and of course, a CRM
So why is a CRM so critically important to good investor relations?
The role of the IR professional is to provide communications to the investment public (investors, media, etc.), on the latest news and updates that affect the company. This job is simply far to complex without in the current digital age, with the help of technology.
A CRM allows the IR professional to track their communications, document conversations, and keep all critical parties updated in a timely manner. This is an absolute necessity for every company that hopes to develop a positive relationship with their investors and the investment media.
There are some basic requirements for all CRM platforms, and then there are specific requirements for investor relations. Here are our top 5 CRM’s for Investor Relations.
There are very few CRM solutions on the market as advanced as Salesforce. When it comes to features then Salesforce has got to be on your shortlist. While Salesforce is vastly more than a CRM suite now,
Here at Agile IR, the data-driven decision-making model is a core belief, and that is one of the primary reasons we have such a high opinion of Salesforce. There is a lot of data that is collected natively by Salesforce, and the reports are exceptional.
Few IR professionals are comfortable identifying with marketing models for the industry, but that is precisely where investor relations are heading.
One of the main reasons that we like HubSpot CRM is that it is free… well… kinda.
And that is not really why we like HubSpot, rather, the company offers a variety of marketing solutions, and many are well suited for the investor relations space. The advanced features of the HubSpot marketing or CRM are premium services, but that should be expected.
But in terms of just the Hubspot CRM, the platform is highly versatile and customizable without any of the premium features.
As digital marketing advocates for investor relations, we believe that Hubspot is a go-to resource for all IR professionals. But there are lots of features built into Hubspot CRM that will allow both small and mid-sized IR teams to be highly effective.
One thing that I personally like about HubSpot’s CRM solution is that is fairly scaled-down, but has all the major features that are needed when communicating with the investment pubic.
There is a very slick mobile app for both iPhone and Android devices, but the Android app integrates far better than the iPhone version. This is largely due to the security protocols for Apple devices, but in terms of convenience, Android gets the nod here.
While I have placed Salesforce higher on the list, my personal preference is HubSpot for a CRM application.
#3 MICROSOFT 365 DYNAMICS
Whether you are a fan of Microsoft or not, the software giant is one of the most reliable producers of enterprise solutions, and their CRM solutions reflect this fact.
I am currently looking at moving away from Hubspot (not because it is lacking) to Microsoft Dynamics because it will integrate with many of my other solutions. This is a major point to keep in mind when you do select a customer relations management suite.
We rely on Microsoft for many of our software solutions (Teams, Office, Skype, etc.), and Dynamics is currently something that we are looking at seriously. That being said, this has been on the table for a while, and we have yet to make the switch.
Dynamics is an excellent platform, and if you are looking for an enterprise-level solution, then it should be on your radar.
#4 AGILE CRM
Okay, I will admit it, the name is what grabbed my attention initially. But it would be foolish to not respect the impact that Agile CRM has made in the customer relationship management market.
Agile CRM was built with a few basic tenants at its core. First, marketing automation. There are many daily aspects of investor relations that can be automated, improving communication. Second, was the advent of social media for developing contacts. Third, is accessibility, meaning simply to use and affordable.
For a small-business, AgileCRM is very well suited, with lots of features to make it a very powerful solution.
#5 ZOHO CRM
This may seem like a pick from left field, but ZOHO CRM makes it on the list for a few reasons. First, I know of a couple of highly respected IR firms that rely upon ZOHO CRM and have done so for several years.
And secondly, it is highly flexible. This ability to customize ZOHO CRM is why these firms went with it initially.
Investor Relations is a very specific industry, so flexibility is highly important. The ability to set up a custom workflow in ZOHO is a very compelling argument. While we do not use it in-house at AgileIR, we have seen first hand that it is very useful for the industry.
Regardless of the CRM solution that you decide to take on, whether it is one of the 5 listed here, a custom solution, or some other CRM package, the important thing is that you are using one.
If you have decided against a CRM, or think that Outlook or Gmail is going to meet your needs, then we hope you reconsider. After 20+ years in the IR industry, I believe that implementing a reliable CRM platform and a logical workflow is critical to a company’s IR success.