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. 16, No. 7, July

2012 Annual Buyer's Guide: Welcome to CRM Magazine's 15th Buyer's Guide!
On the following pages, you will find some of the most important solution providers in the CRM industry, and perhaps some you haven't heard of before. For more complete information on these companies, including any editorial mentions they have received...
Aquasana Dives into Social Intelligence: NetBase Helps the Water Filter Company Gain Insight into Its Customers' Needs
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] The idea for Aquasana--water filters produced by Sun Water Systems--came about when founder Charles Strand noticed his infant son was affected by the family's tap water. After testing multiple products, Strand discovered his...
A Realistic Look at Social Media and the Contact Center
Twitter and Facebook have given customers new ways to connect with businesses, get information, voice opinions--positive and negative--and generally assess and comment on companies and the products and service they provide. In enterprises wanting to...
Best Practices for CRM in the Enterprise
Thanks to disruptive consumer and business technologies, the business world has entered a new era of engagement. Mobile access, social technologies, cloud computing, advanced analytics and unified communications have taken hold in the hearts and minds...
Brainstorming Your Way to Sales Growth: Successful Sales Leaders Share Their Best Tips
All sales executives face the challenge of driving consistent sales growth--but some are far better at it than others. In their new book, Sales Growth: Five Proven Strategies from the World's Sales Leaders, three experts from financial consulting firm...
Catching Up with Your Customers: Restaurants Struggle to Reach Their Increasingly Tech-Savvy Customers
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Independently owned restaurants have a long way to go in using online marketing tools and reaching out to consumers, studies show. In a Pew Research Center survey of more than 1,000 adults, more than half of the respondents...
CRM Moves to an Outside-In Approach
THE SURGE in consumer social media activity reinforces the fact that people want to be heard. Fortunately, some CRM heavyweights made some pretty significant acquisitions recently and, as a result, are incorporating more customer listening tools--or...
Customer Service Climbs Firms' Priority Lists: Mobile and Online Experiences Also Seen as Key Business Objectives in the Immediate Future
Improving the customer experience has become a major strategic priority for just about every company this year, according to a report by Forrester Research. In the report "The State of the Customer Experience, 2012," 93 percent of businesses surveyed...
Do More with Less in Customer Service CRM: Customer Service CRM 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 enabling CRM customer service excellence for clients around the world, through its customer interaction hub platform....
Driving Customer Engagement in a Cross-Channel World: Five Key Principles for Effective Enterprise Marketing
As the world grows ever-more connected, the promise of cross-channel marketing offers endless opportunities to deliver relevant, personalized content. With these opportunities, enterprise marketing and IT teams face the challenges of delivering millions,...
Fewer Than 1 in 7 B2B Customer Relationships Are Optimal: Gallup Study Finds the Need for a Shift from Price-Focused Strategy to One of Customer Engagement
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] B2B companies looking to gain a competitive edge must look beyond product and price to create long-term customer impact and engagement. In "Creating Impact in B2B Relationships," a report by global research and performance...
For Social Success, Build a Business Use Case: Companies That Fail at Measuring ROI Say It's Too Hard, Too Early, or They Weren't Asked
Despite Gartner's prediction that the market for social CRM software licenses will total $2.1 billion this year, it's estimated that only 50 percent of Fortune 1000 companies that implement a social CRM initiative will notice a measurable return on...
Going Global: Doing Business in Multiple Countries Adds New Challenges to Social Implementations
SINCE ISM was founded in 1985, we have helped dozens of global corporations develop CRM, social CRM, and social media initiatives. We are currently working with an aluminum industry supplier, an oil manufacturer, and a hotel chain on their global CRM...
In Contact Centers, WFO's Star Is on the Rise: A Host of Innovations Are Adding New Dimensions
CONTACT CENTER workforce optimization (WFO) continues to be one of the top technology sectors in the contact center market. Vendors large and small simply get it. They continue to deliver functionally rich solutions that satisfy the needs of their...
Juniper Networks Adds Value to Customer References: Metia Enterprise Reference Manager Helps Streamline Efforts and Empower the Sales Team
You might say that a customer reference program is the secret weapon in a salesperson's arsenal. Commonly used in enterprise B2B marketing, these programs are designed to jumpstart sales cycles. A customer reference manager typically seeks out and...
Lessons from Governments Leaders Q&A with David Gergen
In his opening keynote address at the 2011 CRM Evolution conference, David Gergen, senior CNN political analyst and former adviser to four U.S. presidents, told attendees that a leader's job is to influence others to act. There is one caveat, though:...
Listening to the Voice of the Constituents: A Snapshot of the Ways Government Agencies Are Using CRM Strategies and Technology Today
Privately owned companies are not the only ones turning to new technology to improve their services and communication channels--U.S. government agencies are also taking the plunge, albeit in varying degrees. Increasingly, federal, state, and local...
Listening to the Voice of the Customer: As Companies Adopt Voice of the Customer Solutions, Customers Expect Them to Act on Their Feedback
A few years ago, when companies wanted to know what their customers were thinking, they just asked. It sounds simple enough, but it was anything but. Companies painstakingly pulled together a large random sampling of their customers and then overwhelmed...
Pint of View: Kickstart Your Business: Seeking Venture Capital Has Become a Little Easier
LONG STORY SHORT: The best way to get money to create new things is to find the people who want those things and have them give you the money first. But you don't come to this column for short, simple chunks of wisdom, so here's the long story long....
Service to Sing About: Wren Solutions Streamlines Internal Support and Eliminates Duplication with TeamSupport
For nearly 30 years, Wren Solutions has supplied retail loss prevention professionals with a wide range of physical security solutions, including enterprise-class video management software, access control systems, loss prevention and operational assessments,...
SMBs Take to the Cloud: 2012 Holds Great Potential as a Breakout Year for CRM
SMALL businesses are turning to CRM more than ever, with many focusing on cloud-based platforms. A recent study by Dell Cloud Business Apps and Techsale found that 55 percent of respondents are using a cloud-based CRM solution this year--up 61 percent...
Social Media Belongs in the Contact Center: When Marketing Works with Customer Service, Customers and Enterprise Benefit
CONTACT CENTERS (or customer service departments) should be the group responsible for handling social media interactions, not because all discussions are service-related (although a large percentage are), but because the contact center is the only...
Solve the Master Data Management Equation: Offering Personalized and Rewarding Service Requires Up-to-Date and Accurate Data Shared across the Enterprise
CUSTOMERS want personalized service and value, but all too often, efforts to give them this are hampered by inaccurate data. The problem is that data, if left unchecked, will rapidly erode at a rate of 20 percent annually, according to published reports....
The New IP: All Data May Not Be Equal, but It May Be Equally Important
BIG DATA seems to be the flavor of the month, perhaps of the year, and with good reason. We're awash in it. But there's data and then there's data, and the quantity is less important than you might think. At least sometimes. The kind of data that concerns...