Managing customer relationships used to be siloed and disjointed. Sales did their thing, support did theirs, and never did the two meet. But this fragmented approach doesn't cut it anymore. Research shows it costs 5-25x more to attract new customers than to keep existing ones happy. So, how can businesses bring teams together to collaborate on delivering awesome customer experiences?
Enter the powerful combination of Slack and CRM. By integrating tools like Salesforce, HubSpot, and Zoho into Slack channels, the walls come down between sales, service, marketing, and other teams. Now, everyone has visibility into customer conversations happening across departments. Sales reps can easily loop in customer success when closing a deal. Support agents can tap product experts in real-time to solve customer issues faster. No more blind spots, no more silos. Just a unified view of the customer so teams can proactively meet their needs.
The result? Shorter sales cycles, faster issue resolution, and more satisfied customers. This guide will walk through the nuts and bolts of setting up Slack + CRM integrations and how companies can deliver the connected customer experiences today's buyers expect.
Why You Should Connect Slack and CRMs
Integrating Slack with CRM software can significantly optimize your business processes and boost team performance. Here's how:
- Real-Time Synchronization: It enables teams to stay on the same page by receiving instantaneous updates on customer interactions and sales activities. This immediate visibility ensures that important information and critical issues are promptly addressed by everyone involved. For example, when a new lead is added to the CRM system, a notification can be sent to the appropriate Slack channel, allowing sales representatives to be instantly informed and take action.
- Contextual conversations with customers: As the customer information from the CRM seamlessly flows into Slack channels and messages, it provides agents and account managers the context they need during customer conversations. They can reference meaningful historical data such as past purchase history, preferences, and prior interactions, which can significantly improve the quality of their customer service and sales efforts.
According to Accenture, 91% of customers are more likely to purchase from brands that recognize and remember them and provide relevant offers and recommendations. Having contextual information handy via CRM integration can enable agents to deliver a personalized experience, thus yielding higher customer satisfaction.
- Automated Workflows: It enables routine tasks - setting reminders for an upcoming customer call or following up on a warm lead - to be handled directly within Slack, leaving no room for oversight or delay. This is done without manual intervention, freeing your team's time to address more significant, value-driven tasks.
Connecting Slack with CRM software streamlines operations and promotes a collaborative and efficient work environment, ensuring your business delivers an unrivaled customer experience.
How to Set Up the Integration of Slack and CRM
Integrating Slack with your CRM takes just a few steps and enables powerful cross-platform capabilities. Here are the key things to do when setting up the integration:
Step #1: Connect Slack and the CRM
- In Slack, visit the integrations page and select your CRM from the available options (common options include Salesforce, HubSpot, Zoho CRM, and Microsoft Dynamics 365).
- Follow the prompts to connect your Slack workspace to your CRM account. You'll need to provide permission to link the accounts.
- Your CRM may have additional setup steps on their side to enable sharing. Complete any required configuration in your CRM as well.
Step #2: Configure Preferences and Settings
- Once connected, customize the integration settings in Slack and your CRM.
- In Slack, you can specify which channels sync with the CRM, notification settings, and more.
- Choose which data fields, objects, and actions flow into Slack to tailor your CRM to your needs.
Step #3: Set Permissions and Access Controls
- Decide which teams and individuals can access synced CRM data in Slack. Restrict permissions to protect sensitive information.
- Use your CRM's existing role-based access controls to limit visibility into certain records and fields.
- In Slack, you can limit which channels, messages, and files are accessible by the integration.
With the accounts linked and preferences configured, the integration will enable seamless workflows between the platforms. Your teams can now collaborate on key customer records and data within Slack.
Best Practices for Using Slack and CRM Together
To maximize the benefits of using Slack and CRM together, there are a few recognized best practices you can adopt:
1. Structure Channels by Topic or Team
Creating dedicated channels for topics or teams can help organize communication more effectively. For instance, you might have separate channels for sales, marketing, and customer support and another for general company updates.
This allows you to send team-specific CRM updates to the relevant channels, ensuring that team members are only apprised of the information that relates to them. For example, if a new lead is added to the CRM, a notification can go out in the sales channel. This approach avoids cluttering every employee's Slack with irrelevant information and lets the specific team handle and discuss it in their dedicated channel.
2. Create Custom Emojis for Common Actions
Custom emojis can add an extra layer of personalization and fun to your Slack communications. But they can also serve a more practical purpose. For instance, they can denote actions or statuses, such as identifying a closed deal, a new customer, or an issue that needs attention.
By agreeing upon what specific emojis represent, your team can quickly grasp the context of updates or responses. For example, a 'thumbs up' emoji could indicate a successfully resolved customer complaint, while a 'rocket' emoji might mark a deal just closed on CRM.
3. Use Slackbot for FAQs to Handle Basic Questions
Slackbot is an in-built automation in Slack that can be programmed to answer frequently asked questions. Suppose you have common CRM-related queries like 'How do you add a new lead?' or 'How do you update a customer's information?'. In that case, the Slackbot can handle these automatically, saving your team's time and reducing repetitive efforts.
To set this up, simply customize your workspace within Slack and add specific responses for defined queries. Your team can then focus on more high-priority tasks, knowing Slackbot handles basic CRM inquiries.
4. Set Up Automated Workflows Between Tools
Automated workflows between Slack and CRM software save time and streamline processes. Here's how you can achieve this:
- Set up automatic notifications for different CRM events to trigger in the relevant slack channels. For instance, if a deal closes, a notification can be sent to the 'Sales Successes' channel in Slack.
- Automate CRM actions directly from Slack via bots. These could include creating new leads, updating customer information, or scheduling follow-ups.
- Utilize third-party apps like Zapier to create more complex automation between Slack and CRM. For example, when a new message is posted to a specific Slack channel, a new deal can be created automatically in the CRM.
Setting up these automated workflows reduces manual tasks, increases efficiency, and ensures everyone can access real-time information.
Limitations of Native Slack Integration with CRMs
While Slack's built-in sync with CRMs like Hubspot and Salesforce grants teams improved communication, workflows, and productivity - the native integrations fall short in some areas. For starters, native integrations only showcase a fraction of your CRM's features, so your team won't be able to tap into its full potential. And if your organization sees a ton of activity, you may encounter some hiccups as native tools aren't designed to handle large volumes of customer data and tickets.
But with the right integration platform, you can build connections at scale for peak reliability. This ensures every team member can collaborate in Slack using the full breadth of your CRM, no matter the size of your business. So, while native integrations provide a solid foundation, a solution like ClearFeed takes your tools' abilities to the next level.
Bring Customer Communication into One Place
Integrating Slack with your CRM via ClearFeed can improve how your teams collaborate and communicate with customers. Your sales, marketing, and support reps can provide a seamless customer experience by bringing conversations into Slack channels and making CRM data readily available.
Key benefits of integrating Slack and CRM with ClearFeed include:
- Create and manage support tickets right in Slack channels. Triage customer requests in a dedicated channel with status updates in real-time.
- Use 🔒 emoji for internal notes visible only to your team. Collaborate seamlessly while keeping sensitive details private.
- Deploy a GPT-powered virtual agent to answer customers' FAQs instantly. Take the load off your team while delighting customers with fast resolutions.
- Get alerts in Slack if SLAs are at risk of breaching. Stay on top of service levels and meet customer commitments by understanding performance metrics.
- Send automated CSAT surveys when tickets are closed. Monitor satisfaction and continually improve experiences.
Learn more about how we help scale sales operations and improve customer experience here.
Q1. Is Slack a CRM?
Slack is not a traditional CRM platform. However, the tool can become invaluable to your CRM strategy. By integrating Slack with leading CRM solutions like HubSpot and Salesforce, companies can create a seamless customer support experience.
Your team can deliver personalized, timely customer service with Slack's messaging and automation capabilities combined with your CRM's data and workflows. Customer conversations can be securely captured in Slack and synced to the CRM, creating a continuous workflow. Agents get the full context of the customer right at their fingertips in Slack.
Q2. Can You Use Slack as a CRM for Sales?
While Slack is primarily known as a collaboration and communication tool, it can be utilized as a partial CRM solution for sales teams. By integrating various tools with Slack, such as CRM platforms like Salesforce, sales teams can access important customer data and collaborate effectively.
The integration allows teams to centralize communication, share updates, and discuss sales opportunities within Slack channels. Additionally, workflows can be automated using Slack's integrations, enabling teams to streamline processes and improve efficiency.