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. 13, No. 12, December

7 Keys to Customer Experience: Big-Picture Advice for How to Improve the Customer Experience over the Next Year
DESPITE the economic difficulties in 2009, we've seen a significant uptick in real customer experience efforts. What do I mean by real? Efforts that address systemic issues such as poorly designed interactions, broken processes, outdated business rules,...
A Light-Bulb Moment for Customer Interaction: Can a Proactive Consumer Strategy Help North America Find the Impetus It Needs to Reinvest in Customer-Facing Technology?
Jim Hackett, manager of credit and collections at PECO Energy, a Philadelphia-based electric and natural gas utility subsidiary, is no stranger to the economic realities facing his consumer base today. He knows it's harder for people to pay their utility...
Always Be Selling: Streamline and Automate How Sales Professionals Are Compensated So They Can Focus on What They Do Best: Selling
EVEN AS THE ECONOMY continues to trudge along, sales professionals are expected to not only help cross-sell and upsell existing clientele, but to bring in new accounts--and fast. The problem, ironically, is that sales professionals are spending...
Chatty-Chatty Makes a Bang-Bang Online Experience: Nationwide Talks Its Way into a More Successful Automotive Quote-and-Buying Process with nGenera CIM
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Every customer believes she's a special case, an exception--and wants to be treated accordingly, as if she's one of a kind. When it came to the auto-policy process at insurance giant Nationwide, run-of-the-mill buyers were...
EarthLink Connects to a World of Loyalty: Analyzing Churn Helped the Internet Service Provider Improve Not Just the Targeting of Its Messages, but Its Overall Customer Retention as Well
It's always cheaper to retain customers than acquire new ones, something that a tough economic climate has made increasingly clear to many companies. EarthLink, one of the largest Internet service providers (ISPs), managed to connect with this reality,...
Great Relationships Start with Good Experiences
HOW DOES customer experience management (CEM) fit into a company's overall CRM strategy? Where does CEM start and stop? I'm still a little fuzzy on what some analysts consider CEM, especially when compared to CRM. It also doesn't help that many in...
How Many Clicks Does It Take? Forget All the Bells and Whistles-Usability Reigns Supreme among CRM Users
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] A little more than half a year ago, the start-up knowledge services firm ChaCha was dancing just as fast as it could. The next step for the company, which provides answers to wide-ranging questions sent in by mobile users,...
Information Overload: Your Data Is Multiplying, Your Channels Are Extending, the Chatter Is Never-Ending. You're Already Having Trouble Keeping Up with the Stream of Information. What Happens When That Stream Becomes a Flood?
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Relaxation is a whole lot more intense than it used to be. I realized this one recent lazy Sunday afternoon: Before assuming my position on the couch, I gathered the television remote control, my smartphone, a print magazine,...
No Substitute for Experience: When the Economy (Eventually) Rebounds, Customers Will Be Swayed by Differentiators. That's Why the Smart Companies Are Investing in Customer Experience Now
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] As one of the many subsets of CRM, customer experience management (CEM) has been having an experience of its own lately: an upsurge of interest. And yet, according to recent research from Gartner and other analysis firms,...
On Your Marketing, Get Set, Go! with the Help of Brainshark's On-Demand Web Events, Corporate Visions Sees Record Sales in Its Consulting Business
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Consider this a double whammy that a company with a name like Corporate Visions wishes it saw coming: The provider of on- and offline consulting and training to sales and marketing professionals was suddenly eyeing not just...
Presence Is Accounted For: Is Unified Communications the Next Disruptive Technology for Customer Service?
EVERY ONCE IN A WHILE a technology or application emerges that has the potential to disrupt the status quo. The Internet is an example. On the other hand, CRM has been a disappointment for many organizations, often generating more problems than value....
The Integration Advantage: Unifying the Sales Process and the CRM System Is Essential
GOING BACK through my files, I found the first announcement I ever received about sales process being enabled in CRM applications--it was 10 years ago. I remember doing some investigation into these claims and, while the concept sounded very interesting,...
The Most Wonderful Time of the Year: A Quick Look at Year's-End Uncertainty and Future Possibilities
DECEMBER IS AN EVENTFUL MONTH for CRM magazine, since it's the time for cranking out the assessments of the year that's passed and predictions of the one to come. I used to enjoy that sort of thing, and I probably still would, but it's not strictly...
The New Customer Record: You Need More Than Just Transaction Data If You Want to Take Action
FOR SO LONG, the single view or 360-degree view of the customer was CRM's Holy Grail. In customer-data lingo, it's called the unified master--a complete record in a single place of all transactions (sales) and operational interactions (marketing response...
Think Again. and Again
Despite all the talk about metrics--see our feature "Mistaken Metrics," October 2009, for some of that discussion--when it comes to making smart decisions, thinking too much may hurt more than it helps. Despite the titular assertion of William Cusick's...
Trust Is the New Differentiator: Big Brands and Consumers Alike See a Newfound Value in Trust
It turns out the exchange of trust involves more than good eye contact, unwavering verbal testament, and a firm handshake. Consumers, in particular, are now pickier about who they'll trust, and as Gartner analyst Michael Maoz said at his firm's recent...
UC and a Side of Fries: Equipment Manufacturer Henny Penny Cooks Up Better Customer Service Thanks to Cisco Systems' Unified Communications Solutions
* Tell me about Henny Penny. We're a food-service-equipment manufacturer, [primarily] pressure-frying and open-frying products. We provide equipment mostly to large restaurant chains. We're in most of the large and extremely popular fast-food restaurants,...
Video, at Your Service: A Contest Turns the Customer Service Center into a Film Location
When this year's Customer Service Week began in early October, it happened to coincide with the International Customer Management Institute's (ICMI) weeklong Annual Contact Center Exhibition (ACCE), the self-proclaimed "global gathering of the contact...
Video Is More Than Viral: Forget YouTube Sensations and Wardrobe Malfunctions. after Years Spent Bound Up by Bandwidth, Video Is Finally Able to Help Your Business Become the Star of the Show
Video may have killed the radio star, but it hasn't been as lucky in its attempts to slay other marketing channels. Technology and bandwidth have been the stumbling blocks, but as the systems mature, the question can finally be asked: Can you truly...