As a company that deals with investors, building and improving relations is a priority task, and firms use different methods and tools to ensure that. Customer relationship management (CRM) is one of them, and it is said that for every dollar a firm spends on CRM, the return on investment is greater than $8! Therefore, it is vital for companies to use the right CRM for investor relations.
In this post, we will tell you everything you need to know about investor relations CRM, from the features that you need to see in a CRM to the wide variety of CRM available out there with their respective qualities.
What is an Investor Relations CRM?
Investor relations (IR) is the department in an organization that deals with investors (both individuals and firms) as well as agencies and investor analysts. A CRM for IR takes care of the connection between both parties, the business, and the investor, to ensure proper information transmission and timely communication. This includes sharing insights into the company’s stats, quick automated interactions, and a reliable customer support solution. With an investor relations CRM, the company will have a single platform to take care of all its dealings with the investor groups.
Why Does Investor Relations Need a CRM?
As mentioned earlier, a CRM can be the all-in-one platform for investor relations, and a CRM can provide those advantages while saving on the company’s budget as well. Here are the reasons why a CRM can benefit the IR in any institute:
- Help achieve better relations with the investors as the CRM helps you to understand their behavior and relationship with the firm, which in turn makes them stay with your company longer
- Provide detailed statistics and data to analyze that leads to better strategy building
- Improved support to the investors and agencies since all the information related to them and their interactions with the company is available on the CRM
- Quick communication since numerous customizable templates for replies, such as e-mails and quotes, are available that save the investors from any waiting times that may have a bad impression and push them away
- Increased productivity since all your major tasks to deal with the investors are right there on one platform, which helps in working efficiently
True to its name, CRM (Customer Relationship Management) provides the company with opportunities to build its relations with investors and related agencies and manage them in a highly effective way.
Who Uses a CRM for Investor Relations
According to research, of all the companies having ten or more employees, 91% of them use CRM to manage customer-firm relations. When it comes to investor relations, here’s who uses a CRM:
Investor Relations Teams Public Companies
The IR team at any public company takes care of the relations with investors. They provide them with the required data of the firm so that the investors can decide on whether or not they should invest in the company. For this purpose, the IR team has to be extremely well-connected with both the organization’s internal decisions and policies, as well as the investors and analysts. So, these teams use CRM to deal with their connection and communication with the latter.
Venture capitalists are individuals or firms that invest in any company in return for equity in their shares. These firms usually deal with businesses that they believe have high growth potential so that as they grow, venture capitalists will benefit from it as well. While it may seem like a simple task, finding a company with such potential takes a lot of effort and searching. Therefore, venture capitalists use CRM to manage their communication with potential firms and any deals that they make with them.
Other Businesses with Investors
Since every organization that deals with investors and wants to acquire more of them needs investor relations, these firms use CRM to conduct and organize their dealings and communication with the investors. Such organizations include real estate firms, startup founders, small fundraisers, and sports teams.
What to Look for in an Investor Relations CRM
While a CRM for investor relations helps with management and communication, there are certain things that you need to look for in your CRM specifically for IR:
Ease of Setup
When using a tool that hasn’t been incorporated before in the firm or any of its departments, setting it up can be a drill. The CRM that the investor relations use should be easy to set up since IR is linked with many areas in the company, and if the setup process is difficult, it may lead to errors. This, in turn, can stop the CRM from properly being incorporated into the system, and with the improper application, the data gathered and all the processes that follow can be inaccurate or negatively affected.
When you are dealing with investors or such agencies, it is important to adhere to the laws and regulations of the area you are working in. It is necessary since otherwise, legal action can be taken against your firm, and your investor may get into trouble as well. The CRM you use should take into account these rules and perform any activity accordingly.
The basic functionality of an investor relations CRM is to keep tabs on the investors (current or potential). A CRM for IR should have the entire activity with a certain investor, and the interface should be simple so that the IR team can have an insight into the whole list of dealings easily. This is essential for building a proper strategy for retaining old investors and understanding their behavior to attract potential ones.
Integration with Current Stack
The CRM should not only be easy to set up but also integrate into the company’s whole system seamlessly. This will include all the third-party tools that the firm uses to gather and analyze its data. This is important to have an efficient and productive output because if the CRM doesn’t integrate with the whole system appropriately, the IR team will be needed to move between tools to perform tasks which will waste both time and resources.
Investor Relation Functionality
Specifically for IR, the CRM should share detailed insights into the deal flow pipeline as well as any sort of communication. This can later be shared with your investors if needed and used as a success story to show potential investors to have a good impression. The CRM for investor relations should also be able to gather data from the market and different databases and help the IR in hunting for potential investors.
Customizable for Investor Relations Needs
A customizable CRM is one in which you can add certain features or change them so that they can incorporate into the company’s system in a better way. This is preferable to having a custom-made CRM, especially for smaller firms, since the cost is way less and as it’s the same CRM, the maintenance and upgrading are easier too.
Best Investor Relations CRM
There are tons of CRMs available in the market, but not all of them are perfectly fit for investor relations use. Below is a list of some of the best CRM for investor relations:
- HubSpot CRM
- Zoho CRM
- Backstop Solutions
- Nasdaq IR Insight
- Affinity CRM
CRMs Designed Specifically for Investor Relations
From the ones above, some CRMs that are designed specifically for IR so that you can attain all the important functionalities that you need to use for your investor relations:
- Backstop Solutions
Most Popular CRMs
These CRMs are some of the best and most popular ones that you can find on the market. Each of them has its own qualities and features that can be beneficial for their use in investor relations. Read on to learn about them in detail.
There are some other famous ones available as well:
HubSpot – Sales CRM
HubSpot provides software and tools for numerous business needs, such as marketing and sales, under a single platform. HubSpot sales CRM is an all-in-one software that provides many different tools to manage customers (investors in this case), see the deal pipeline, activity, and communications, as well as other reports for analysis and strategy building.
- E-mail tracking and templates
- E-mail and meeting scheduler
- Integration with Gmail, Google Calendar, Outlook, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn
- In-depth reports and insights into users’ interactions, such as webpage visits
- Deal stages can be customized to meet company needs
- A free-to-use version with limited features
HubSpot CRM for Investor Relations
There are many features that make HubSpot CRM usage ideal for investor relations. It has 20 apps that allow you to customize HubSpot CRM to your needs. It offers a wide variety of platforms to integrate its CRM. It also lets you automate many different tasks with numerous apps.
Although it has certain features that help with IR, HubSpot’s specialty is inbound marketing, where content quality matters and not the way a company attracts investors. Furthermore, it isn’t designed specifically for IR but to attract customers and increase sales, so it doesn’t have features best suited only for investor relations.
Freshsales – Sales CRM
Freshsales is a sales CRM by Freshworks. Although it has paid options that go up to $83 per month, there is also a free version with certain features, such as a built-in chat and phone option as well as contact management. You can get their Enterprise package that will give you access to all the features that they offer. Just like HubSpot, Freshsales CRM deals with both marketing and sales, as well as e-mail campaigns and some other related options.
- Viewable CRM in your desired languages and currencies (if compatible)
- Custom modules for gathering specific data from user interactions
- Automation with e-mail templates, chat campaigns, and web forms
- Integration with Gmail, WhatsApp, Zoom, SMS service, Slack, and PayPal
- Insights and forecasts by Freshsales AI assistant named Freddy
Freshsales CRM for Investor Relations
With chat, e-mail, and phone, all integrated into their CRM, Freshsales provide companies with simple ways to stay in contact with users without having to leave the platform. This can be especially beneficial when replying to a potential investor quickly. It also allows you to have multiple sales pipelines through which you can track a single deal with any investor from multiple channels’ points of view.
Freshsales offers CRMs tailored for 13 industries, including real estate and insurance, but it doesn’t have any for IR. This limits its use for investor relations since other industries’ main aim is to get customers and sales, while for IR, getting someone who will invest in the firm is the main goal.
Freshsales pricing is available starting at $12 a month per user, annually.
Salesforce Sales Cloud CRM
Just like the above two, Salesforce is also a platform that has a central dashboard for multiple processes in the company. It allows management of marketing and sales as well as interaction with clients. Salesforce allows you to have a free trial period without any credit card information input so that anyone can try for themselves to see the various features this platform has to offer. Moreover, Salesforce has about 20% of the overall CRM market share.
- User-friendly mobile app
- Automation with simple drag and drop and an overall easy process
- Real-time deals and processes pipeline tracking
- Easy-to-set-up goals and KPIs (Key performance indicators) to get forecasts accordingly
- Customizable and custom-made CRM solutions
- 24/7 customer support
Salesforce Sales Cloud CRM for Investor Relations
Automation is really helpful when you are dealing with investors since missing a chance, and the investor can move on to some other firm. Real-time tracking of the sales pipeline will enable you to make quick decisions and finalize the deal without having delays that can lead the investor away.
However, you cannot integrate Salesforce with most of the mainstream tools and software, just like with HubSpot and Freshsales. This can prove to be difficult if your company doesn’t use the tools that can be integrated with Salesforce since changing a whole set of tools for a CRM may not be feasible.
Pipedrive is another CRM that focuses on marketing and sales and allows users to track deals. You can set up Pipedrive’s basic functionality easily in three simple steps; setting the sales pipeline stages, keeping tabs on the process and monitoring progress, and using the CRM’s AI to find out potential opportunities for growth.
- Free 14-day trial period with complete access to the CRM
- Customizable sales pipeline to fit your business model
- Forecasts for sales and revenue based on the data from the sales pipeline
- Integration with 300+ other tools and apps, such as Slack and Outlook
- Easily create sharable, trackable documents
- 24/7 live chat and e-mail customer service in case any assistance is required
Pipedrive CRM for Investor Relations
With so many third-party tools that allow integration with Pipedrive, you can easily make the whole process of dealing with the investors seamless. The free trial period can also help you get comfortable with the CRM and its interface without having to pay for the whole thing.
Since not being an IR-specific CRM, Pipedrive may not have features extremely specific for investors. Nonetheless, you can still track your interactions with them as well as the pipeline process of making the deals. Automation will also help in quick communication, making a good impression on potential investors.
Zoho CRM, just like the other ones on the list, deals with marketing and sales management in a single platform. However, it is primarily made for small and medium-sized companies, and so their highest plan is only $52 per month (billed annually). Zoho CRM pricing is affordable and easy to understand.
- Call and e-mail users and leads from their record cards
- Set up your own required processing rules for the sales processes
- Customize the CRM interface with Canva Design Studio
- Multiple languages and currencies supported
- Remote work features allowing up to 50 participants in a video meeting
- Integration with Gmail, Twitter, Slack, and WordPress
Zoho CRM for Investor Relations
Although Zoho isn’t an investor-specific CRM either, the ability to automate, keep in contact with the investors directly from the CRM, follow the whole dealing process and the ability to customize the interface to work more efficiently can all assist you greatly. It is also cheaper than most of the CRMs out there but doesn’t compromise on the quality, so if you are a smaller firm, this one can help you with your IR without putting too much burden on your budget.
Investor Relations CRM Reviewed
From the list of CRMs for investor relations, here’s how their users have reviewed them for their benefits and shortcomings:
- HubSpot CRM: A wide number of users use this CRM but find it to be expensive, and the return on investment can be slow due to that. Overall the customer service is great, and it offers some very high-end features.
- Freshsales – Free Sales CRM: Users find Freshsales to have budget-friendly pricing; however, the lack of reporting options in the free version isn’t much feasible. It is also found to be easier to set up.
- Salesforce Sales Cloud CRM: Similar to HubSpot, a very large number of firms and users use this platform despite it being expensive. Nevertheless, the ROI is still slow. Users found it harder to navigate around to find any required item but were fond of its customize-ability.
- Pipedrive CRM: Users find Pipedrive CRM to have a user-friendly interface that can be played around with, easy to set up, and integration with important tools, such as Google Calendar, but the worst thing that they found was the bugs and crashes and not very helpful customer support.
- Zoho CRM: With Zoho CRM, the users like it for having a large number of features that can provide the solution to all their problems but learning to use them can be a task in itself. The customer support was also found to be slow.
Clienteer CRM – A CRM For Investor Relations
Clienteer CRM is specifically designed for investor relations as well as the management of private equities and assets.
- Client accounts and transactions tracking
- Scalable CRM
- Performance and liquidity analysis
- Investor reporting
- Data storage with auto-tagging
Clienteer lets you integrate with Outlook directly, as well as with Preqin and Pitchbook for real-time data provision.
Users found the tracking and tagging features very helpful, but they can be slow at times. Users also liked the broad functionality but found it harder to avail them at times due to the large number of features available.
- Tracking feature
- Large functionality options
- All data and contact information in one place
- Customization of reporting and interface
- No free trial period
- Slow processing and lags
- No integration with Gmail
Backstop Solutions – A CRM for Investors
Backstop Solutions provide solutions mainly to firms and teams related to the investment industry, such as investor relations, accounting, and investment teams. For their prices, you can contact them to get the plan suited to your needs.
- Deals and liquidity management
- Relationship tracking and Pipeline management
- Marketing automation
- Performance analysis
- Investor accounting and reporting
- Industry-leading information security capabilities
- Client Portal
Backstop Solutions offer two downloadable data sheet packages for asset management and allocation with 1000+ pre-built connectors.
Its users found it easy to track the IR work as well as the simplicity of the platform. However, some users found it harder to navigate and organize data as needed.
- Customizable reports
- Client portal for data sharing with investors
- Tutorials and support
- A good number of features
- Slow report system
- Difficult navigation
- No integration with Gmail
Irwin – An Investor Relations Specific CRM
Irwin is another CRM solely built for firms to extend their investors’ network and investor relations.
You can request a free seven-day trial and, if satisfied, can contact them for further plans.
- E-mail marketing and templates
- Customer database and client portal
- Mobile access
- Shareholder monitoring
- Relationship tracking and financial management
- Task scheduling and summary reports
You can integrate Irwin with both Gmail and Outlook.
Users found the smart analytics and investors database helpful for understanding what aspects to focus on in order to attract more investors. However, they also found that it lacked some automation as a few reports needed to be made manually.
- Client support
- E-mail marketing
- Investor suggestions
- Smart analytics to understand investor behavior
- Integration with both Gmail and Outlook
- Lack of automation in some reporting features
Redtail – A CRM for Financial Advisors
Redtail provided the first cloud-based CRM for financial advisors and now offers other services as well, such as imaging and e-mail management.
Redtail charges $99/month per database that allows up to 15 users.
- 30-day risk-free trial
- Design Workflow (automated processes)
- Customer support portal
- Pipeline and task management
- Seminar manager
- Two-way sync with web-based Office 365
- Mobile application
- Electronic document storage linked to CRM
Redtail has a ton of integration partners, including Evernote, AdvisoryWorld, and Zapier.
Users found the automation for workflows to be very beneficial and the whole user experience to be very easy-to-use. They created Redtail to offer several features that work perfectly for financial professionals. The users, however, didn’t find very outclass customer support and found the integrations to be very basic.
- Good for financial professionals
- Automated workflow designing
- Large integrations options
- 30 days trial period
- Sync with Office 365 Calendar or Google Calendar
- Integrations are basic
- Not very good customer support
Visible.vc – Startup Investor Relations CRM
Visible.vc is built purposefully for founders to communicate with investors.
Visible.vc has four different plans. The most basic option starts at $49/month and increases to $99, $149, and up to $349/month. All of these are billed annually.
- Portfolio and performance tracking
- Portfolio metrics
- Custom update requests for different portfolio segments
- Automated report building
Visible.vc allows integration with many tools, including Google Sheets, Salesforce, Xero, Google Analytics, HubSpot, and Quickbooks. You can also request them if you don’t find your desired tools in their list.
Users found it very easy to stay in touch with the investors and to have continuous metrics updates. However, having more automation options with reporting would have been better.
- Communication with the investors
- KPI data reporting
- User interface
- Limited features and functionality as compared to rivals
- Need more automation with reports
Nasdaq IR Insight – All In One Investor Relations CRM
Nasdaq IR Insight is an all-in-one workflow solution that includes investor interaction, market & peer intelligence workflows, MS Office connectivity, and the ability to organize investor meetings using ConnectIR easily.
IR insight offers customized estimates, depending upon the needs and size of the Investor Relations team. On the other hand, a free demo is also available.
- Gauge Sentiment
- Proprietary analytics tools and integrations
- Secure ESG Benefits
- Identify Shareholder
- Optimize Investor Engagement
- Mobile application
The platform has received appreciation from users for its thorough and easily accessible documentation and helpful information. They have also commended the integration tools that are provided. Although, at times, users have found it difficult to understand their GUI.
- Easy to access
- Responsive client service
- User encounter (device agnostic)
- Numerous product updates and innovation
- Data reliability
- Little knowledge of trade activity
- Limited email integration/functionality
ingage – Software for Investors Relations
ingage offers an integrated, state-of-the-art IR CRM and corporate access software platform built for global corporate IR teams and institutional investors. Along with their leading software, ingage offers a full-service team of experienced industry professionals who are ready to assist with anything from client service to investor engagement.
ingage offers customized estimates at hand, along with the platform’s primary services. A free demo is also available.
- Offers a CRM
- Supports Real-time and Direct Feedback
- Offers Enterprise-level Email Services Directly Integrated into CRM
- High-Level IT Security
- Advanced Targeting
- Analytics & Reporting
- Easy & Seamless Engagement
- Dedicated Apps for Outlook and iOS
- Customizable templates
Users have praised the platform for its complete visibility of information, for instance, the ability to view which pages are in use and presentation usage. Additionally, users noted that the Ingage team is capable, responsive, and eager to incorporate improvements in response to their input.
- Faultless execution.
- Excellent customer service
- Outstanding security credentials
- Some people find the cost too high in the beginning
- Requires initial time and investment to get going
Affinity.co – Relationship Intelligence CRM for Dealmakers
Affinity is a CRM platform based on relationship intelligence and connecting dealmakers with the right contacts. Affinity CRM helps users find and drive deals with relationship intelligence based on your whole team’s network and activities. Affinity automates a variety of tedious tasks so you and your team can spend your time more valuably.
Affinity.co pricing starts at $150/user/year.
- Automated CRM Records
- Android & iOS Mobile Apps
- Dealflow Tracking
- Robust Analytics
Affinity users have raved about the level of organization the CRM platform provides for client data and communication. The ability to centralize CRM operations is a lifesaver for corporations and businesses with a lot of data to manage. Users also love the positive impact the platform has on deal flow.
- High level of organization
- Automates numerous tasks
- Outlook, Salesforce, and other key integrations
- Huge database of startups and companies
- Activity & interaction tracking
- Buggy at times
- Not the cheapest option
Investor Relations CRM Compared
In the table below, you will find the comparison between all the CRMs for IR to help you understand their differences and similarities:
|HubSpot||E-mail tracking and templates E-mail and meeting scheduler Integration with Gmail, Google Calendar, Outlook, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn In-depth reports and insights into the users’ interactions Customizable deal stages A free-to-use version with limited features|
|Freshsales||Multiple languages and currencies Custom modules Automation with e-mail templates, chat campaigns, and web forms Integration with Gmail, WhatsApp, Zoom, SMS service, Slack, and PayPal Insights and forecasts by Freshsales AI|
|Salesforce||Accessible on mobile devices Automation with just a simple drag and drop process Real-time deals and processes pipeline tracking Setting up goals and KPIs Customizable and custom-made CRM solutions|
|Pipedrive||A free 14-day trial period Customizable sales pipeline Forecasts for sales and revenue Integration with 300+ other tools and apps A 24/7 live chat or e-mail customer service|
|Zoho||Call and e-mail users Set up your own processing rules for the sales processes Customize the CRM interface with Canva Design Studio Multiple languages and currencies Remote work feature Up to 50 participants in a video meeting Integration with Gmail, Twitter, Slack, and WordPress|
|Clienteer||Client accounts and transactions tracking Scalable CRM Performance and liquidity analysis Investor reporting Data storage with auto-tagging|
|Backstop Solutions||Deals and liquidity management Relationship tracking and Pipeline management Marketing automation Performance analysis Investor accounting and reporting Client Portal|
|Irwin||E-mail marketing and templates Customer database and client portal Mobile access Relationship tracking and financial management Task scheduling and summary reports|
|Redtail||Design Workflow Customer support portal Pipeline and task management Seminar manager Two-way sync with web-based Office 365 Mobile application|
|Visible.vc||Portfolio and performance tracking Portfolio metrics Custom update requests for different portfolio segments Automated report building|
|Nasdaq IR Insight||All-in-one workflow solution that includes investor interaction, market & peer intelligence workflows, MS Office connectivity, and the ability to organize investor meetings using ConnectIR easily.|
|Ingage||IR software developed for mobility; enabling low-cost, legal, effective, and transparent engagement between investors and listed firms.|
|Affinity||Relationship management CRM for dealmakers looking to find, manage, and close more deals. Integrates with Outlook, Salesforce, Gmail, and more.|
CRM for Investor Relations Ranked
Every CRM has its own special features and things that it excels in. Here is our list of the best CRM for investor relations:
- Zoho CRM
- Nasdaq IR Insight
- HubSpot – Sales CRM
- Backstop Solutions
- Clienteer CRM
- Salesforce Sales Cloud CRM
- Freshsales – Free Sales CRM
- Affinity CRM
- Pipedrive CRM
There are numerous options for CRM platforms, but not all of them will work out best for you. You need to first organize your goals and objectives and find the platform that aligns with them. Zoho CRM is not designed specifically for investor relations, but its wide variety of features combined with cheaper costs can make the investment worth it. For CRMs made specifically for IR, Redtail is the best one since it has an extremely well automation system along with numerous integration options and a 30-day free trial period to try it all!
We hope that this post helped you in finding the best investor relations CRM for your firm.
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