CRM Magazine

A monthly magazine covering news, issues, profiles, and trends in the field of customer relationship management. Focuses on the integration of technology and organizational strategy to develop and maximize the potential of the relationships between organizations and their customers.

Articles from Vol. 12, No. 6, June

All Talk: Unified Communications Has the Potential to Drastically Alter the Business Landscape-Assuming Vendors Really Can Get Their Collective Act (and Your Communications) Together
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] When Robert Fort is sick with the flu, that violin you hear weeping in the background isn't a sign of sympathy--it's a sign of success. With a computer on his lap and a pillow under his head, Fort, the vice president of Internet...
Awana Hears a SaaS Sermon: An International Youth Ministry Gets the CRM It Needs, Integrated with the Enteprise Resource Planning System It Knows
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Some might be offended to hear religion described as a competitive business, but there are certainly competitive aspects--something the missionaries of Awana discovered in late 2006. The Chicago-area nonprofit agency, which...
Believe the Hype about Hosted Contact Centers: After Years of Build-Up, How Much Longer Should We Wait for the Market to Mature?
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] HYPE CAN TAKE ON MANY FORMS--like, say, the word-of-mouth hype that can sweep through a fifth-grade math class. The 21st-century home for hype is clearly the Internet, where blogs spring up debating anything from the "right"...
Best Practices for Killer E-Tailing
What do you really know about your ecommerce customers? Who buys what? Who leaves your site before they buy what they were looking for and why did they do this? Can you see all of the relevant information about each customer in one place? Today's top...
Continuous Customer Dialogues: Strategies for Growth and Loyalty in Multi-Channel Customer-Oriented Organizations
You read about customer-centric growth strategies and hear about them everyday. Articles, websites, industry presentations and speeches are all filled with content and business intelligence that address the challenges and opportunities which lie ahead...
CRM: In the Public Interest: Government's Technological Future Is Beginning with Service Sites and Outreach Programs to Serve Constituents
One of the first words that comes to mind when thinking about government is big--likely followed by slow, inefficient, and other less complimentary ones. To combat this negative image--and to serve citizens while doing so--governments ranging in size...
CRM Magazine Best Practices Series: CRM & eCommerce
CUSTOMER RELATIONSHIP MANAGEMENT AND E-COMMERCE--could there be a more natural combination? In many ways, e-commerce applications, such as the online storefront, are great examples of CRM theory put into practice. Your storefront is like a laboratory,...
Doing More with Less in Contact Centers: Strategies and Best Practices
Customer service has emerged as one of the few sustainable differentiators in today's hyper-competitive markets. The companies winning in this environment are those who provide "standout" customer service, while controlling costs. eGain has been...
Fix the Problem, Not the Symptom
WHAT'S LIKELY to make a customer loyal? One might justifiably argue that customers will continue to pay for a product or service as long as it provides them with more value than what competitors offer. One CRM consultant took this a step further at...
"Houston, We Have a Problem": Simple Customer Management Shouldn't Be Rocket Science
EVERYBODY HAS A STORY about The One That Got Away. In my case The One is Space Shuttle Endeavour. (If I wanted to be accurate, the headline to this article should involve Florida's Kennedy Space Center and not Houston--but I'll take a grabby cliche...
Innovation Can Be Scaled: Game-Changing Evolutionary Insight May Be Sitting Right under Your Nose
IN TODAY'S challenging economic climate, creating a process to scale up innovation offers each sales organization the opportunity to be a critical driver of competitive advantage, particularly in B2B markets. The trick is to find the innovations, select...
Is SaaS Ready for Its Contact Center Close-Up? Software-as-a-Service Continues to Catch on, but Observers Differ on Whether the Not-So-New Business Model Is Right for Contact Centers
As the CRM market warms to on-demand software, providers have begun pushing to make software-as-a-service (SaaS) more palatable for the contact center. Recently, LiveOps, a California-based virtual contact center company, launched a SaaS offering that...
Jazzing Up Online Loyalty: A Basketball Team Uses MyLifeBrand to Create Social Networking That Sparks Loyalty, Ups Revenue, and Increases Sales
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] * Tell us a little bit about the Utah Jazz online. Being a franchise, the Utah Jazz is required to have an online presence, with some requirements from the NBA on what to have on the site. Before Jazzbots.com, the Jazz had...
Let's Hear It for the Customers!
Customers are forging their own place in the online world and businesses had better start tracking them down. From blogs to Facebook, consumers are talking to the world and the world is listening, creating a community of information that has an impact...
Lollipop Loyalty: As Rewards Programs Proliferate, Your Best Customers Want-And Deserve-More Consideration
CUSTOMERS are spoiled--and they have every right to be. Most of them have very little allegiance to just one store or brand, especially when prices are so comparable. As a result, companies are turning to loyalty programs to keep customers coming back....
Making Mashup Masterpieces: Business Just Got a Little More Hands On-And a Lot More Interesting
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] It's rare that a day goes by without a consumer turning to technology to make her life a bit easier. Business leaders also depend on technology to do their jobs; the problem is actually getting that technology to do what they...
Performance Management Requires Process Improvement: Contact Center Performance Management Isn't about Measuring Flaws-It's about Fixing Them
CONTACT center performance management (CCPM) is the most misunderstood application in the market. When used properly (see Figure 1, below), it is a highly valuable tool that assists managers in achieving strategic and tactical goals. As contact centers...
Re:Tooling
Business Problem: Integrating essential marketing analytics across campaigns. Tech Solution: Multichannel marketing tools It's difficult enough to accumulate all the necessary statistics and demographics needed to put together a targeted marketing...
Sell Them; Serve Them; Support Them. Connecting the Dots in B2B Sales and Marketing
Consider AcmePro, Inc. AcmePro (a fictitious company) is a manufacturing company with consumer and industrial products, highly-regarded brands, and multi-channel distribution. Over the past four years, the company deployed multiple applications...
So Hot It's Cool: Ice Energy Pumps Up Sales with the Heat of Email Marketing
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Ice Energy, a provider of ground-source heat pumps in the United Kingdom, aims to deliver its products for the best value. Still, heat pumps aren't exactly an impulse buy, ranging from the equivalent of $10,000 to $30,000...
The Customer Module: After Years of Trying, CRM Still Hasn't Got a Single Place to Capture and Analyze Relevant Customer Data
IS IT TIME to add a customer module to CRM? The concept would provide companies with something they don't yet have: a single place within the CRM system to capture and analyze relevant customer data. We seem to be iterating in that direction. CRM 2.0...
The Risky Risk Business: PGAC Assures Better-And More Effective-Service with Upstream Works
The contact center is all about solving problems--even more so in the auto-insurance industry: No one who's had an accident wants to wait to know what's covered and what needs to be paid out of pocket. Enter Permanent General Assurance Corporation...
The Second Coming of 2.0: "Web 2.0" Has Been the Subject of Much Buzz-Especially in CRM. What's beyond That Buzz, and How Can You Make It Work for You?
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] It probably started with the debut of Business 2.0 in 1998. With a nod to how software developers name product updates, that magazine's title referred to a newer way of operating an enterprise. Ever since, people trying to...
Trouble in the Air: With Chaos in the Airline Industry, Is It Any Wonder Customers Find Their Faith Anything but Sky-High?
The airline industry may adore the sensibility behind the old Sinatra tune "Come Fly With Me"--but frequent flyers can be forgiven for finding the invitation a little hollow lately, if not downright bittersweet. On April 8, American Airlines announced...
Using Online Communities to Gain Feedback
Online communities offer a huge potential for building respondent panels that can be an invaluable source of feedback to customers, employees, partners, and other stakeholders. Such panels can provide a source for deliberate, consistent, and regular...
We Are What We Expect: Shifts in Customer Satisfaction Need to Take into Account Shifts in Customer Expectations
IN FEBRUARY of this year, a brief flurry of news stories covered the second consecutive quarterly decline of something called the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI). The ACSI is an economic indicator, based on modeling of customer evaluations...