If you are a publisher, you may think that using a CRM is a good bet versus using an enterprise resource planner or ERP. After all, many publishers do use client relationship management software and have found they can painstakingly modify it to help them manage freelancers, vendors, sales, and more.

As a provider of a publishing CRM module ourselves, we can understand why you’d want to do so: an ERP is more expensive than a CRM; why pay more for such a platform when you can hopefully tweak a less-expensive CRM for your particular needs?

Yet, what if you could purchase a CRM that’s so robust it comes complete with ERP capabilities? Then what?

Especially if your publication is one of the larger, B2B publishing behemoths? (Think Endeavor Business Media, Gardner Business Media, HMP Global, and so on.) A regular CRM for publishers isn’t made for your extensive billing/finance/project needs.

The difference between a CRM and ERP

CRMs are designed to streamline your business operations, but with a focus on your sales needs. An ERP system is one that integrates across many departments, interconnecting the management of specific processes within your business.

CRMs work to improve relationships between you and your prospects/customers by creating a consistent and high-quality experience for them. A CRM helps you provide quality service and communications with your prospects as they move to becoming your customers, and then assists you in creating and maintaining long-term relationships with them. And that then translates into long-term revenue (and then profitability) for you.

In short, CRMs are perfect for your sales, marketing and customer service teams.

CRMs help you focus “outward.” ERPs help you “look inward.”

Basically, CRMs, are focused on bringing people to you. An ERP keeps you focused on the workings of your company’s teams and how they are keeping its operations healthy by helping you reduce costs and streamline business processes.

Used well, an ERP can help your publishing company:

  • Alert the appropriate employees about an issue not of their direct/usual concern that could affect them, thus allowing workers to plan company-wide and department-level strategies based on company-wide knowledge.
  • Update accounts, process orders (including subscriptions, ads, and vendors) and trigger automatic notices for team members to bill/fulfill orders.
  • Manage editorial, advertising, distribution, subscription chains, and more while creating alerts and records at each step.
  • Track recruiting, hiring and firing of employees as well as contractors/freelancers.
  • Manage employee timecards/freelancer invoices, payroll and benefits. An ERP also can manage personal information of employees/contractors.
  • Enter and track business process information in real-time in and across departments.
  • And so on.

MagHub’s ERP attributes

Our platform has all the bells and whistles – plus some – for your sales and marketing teams, just as any good CRM does, so we won’t discuss them at length here; however, you can certainly find what our platform does to assist those groups on this website..

Yet MagHub also:

  • Offers operational dashboards and reports that help you operate your publishing company via just one cloud-based platform.
  • Provides customizable platforms within MagHub that even allow you to provide your clients access to their order history, interact with your proposals, approve their orders digitally, make payments online and send services requests.
  • Allows production and order tracking that help you follow work requests and coordinate production teams. Your work requests can be turned into color-coded tickets that allow you to prioritize those most important.
  • Lets your editorial and design teams stay on the same page with a single workflow system. MagHub also helps you stay on track with its ability to being synced with a schedule set by issues you create. What’s more, editorial and ad content can be sent directly to your production team with work tickets and artwork attached.
  • Gives you the chance to ditch the Excel spreadsheets and outdated databases. Instead, let your subscribers sign up and pay right online with a platform module you can brand specifically for your publication.
  • Lets your distribution managers set drop off locations, create routes (and sync them with Google maps). You also can create custom portals for your subscribers that let them access their own subscriptions, allowing them to manage their renewals, schedules, address, etc.
  • Allows managers in all departments to get an overall view of your enterprise with dashboard widgets that help administrators see how your company is doing:
    • Track invoices, search AP/AR and then sync it all with QuickBooks Online (finance).
    • Watch how your workers are using their time (HR).
    • See how much revenue is coming and – and projected to come in (admin/finance).
    • Plan editorial and advertising campaigns months ahead of time (editorial and advertising).
    • And much more.

Have we piqued your interest? Good! Learn more about how MagHub can provide you with the power of an ERP at the price of a great CRM.

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