Friday, October 31, 2008

Economic downturn to increase the need for CRM 2.0?

With the crisis on the financial markets and the possible economic downturn in the Mid and Long-Term, I was wondering is this will also slow down the rise of CMR 2.0 or if this will even increase the need for next gen. Customer Relation Management?

Analysts still see Software as a Service (SaaS) as the next big thing on the market - which would support the fusion of traditional CRM and Web 2.0. But will companies be able to re-think their Customer Relationship Model strategy or will they prioritize this down until times get better?

I believe that the majority will see CRM 2.0 as a chance to survive the 'hard times' and come stronger out of them as aver before. Or, to see it from the other side, the economic downturn could be a chance for a business to focus on the most important parts - their customers - and get rid of some of the bad behavior that we could see in the past years of globalization, rise of technology and new markets.

Interesting times ahead of us... Will be interesting to see what the outcome will be.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Web 3.0?!

Is this really a 'major release' or shouldn't this really be Web 2.1?

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Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Analogy to the TV revolution

Brian Halligan raised a good point - isn't the current (r)evolution of Customer Relationship Management (or Customer Relationship Model) very similar to the dramatic changes in Marketing with the introduction of the television 50 years ago?

The TV completely changed the way of marketing and 1089124_tvadvertising! Some companies were able to leverage the new tool and grow dramatically (Coca Cola, P&G, etc.) while others got stuck with their traditional way of marketing and did not grow or even went out of business.

Very similar to what the Web 2.0 does with CRM! Customers discovered how to avoid the traditional advertising - i.e. one way or push communication - overload and more and more using new ways to do their purchase decision. The social networking is playing an important role in this decision.

With a good CRM 2.0 strategy, companies can leverage this development and grow with it. Staying in the old fashioned structures might not be a good idea...

Examples how CRM 2.0 could deliver benefits

 switzerlandI recently moved from Germany to Switzerland and now going through the pain of changing my address with all the companies I am dealing with...

Why can't they connect to a service like Plaxo so that I do not need to change my address with each and everyone of them?

Agreed, there is some security issues that need to be solved and Plaxo might not be the right candidate for holding a 'master address', but this example shows that there are applications of CRM 2.0 that really deliver a value to customers. Maybe they would even chose service providers based on their degree of adoption to these kind of networks...?

For example my mobile provider or insurance company could subscribe to my profile and use OpenSocial to get updates for my address and personal details. This could trigger an email that asks me if the new data is correct (e.g. new address or martial status) and provide a single link where I can confirm. This would safe me hours of my precious time calling all these firms and sending out many many letters and emails...  What a nice dream :)

But wouldn't you immediately sign up for this? Did you ever go through this pain after a move?
Wouldn't that be a criteria when we select a product or service?

Thinking further this is valuable data that can be used for up-sell and cross-sell opportunities that would otherwise potentially fall never have been discovered. Maybe I need a new insurance when I got married or moved into a new house? Need a new price plan for my mobile when I am moving to a different country? Huge potential here...

Monday, October 20, 2008

Social CRM is not a product you can buy!

When I am reading through Oracle's Vision of Social CRM ( I keep thinking that this is really missing the "social" component at all.

What defines a CRM to be "social" ?
How can a product help you achieve this ?
What is the outcome of social CRM ?

Adding some Web 2.0 collaboration tools doesn't help without a properly defined and executed (yes, I came to the conclusion that excution is AS important than strategy :) CRM 2.0 strategy.

It is all about how we leverage the existing tools to create a unique customer experience that differentiates a company from competition. There is no CRM 2.0 installer! There is no way around activating the brain and spending some thoughts of how that really works...

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

93 percent of Americans want companies to have a presence in social media...

New research from Cone LLC finds 93 percent of Americans want companies to have a presence in social media. (more)

This is an impressive number and shows the importance for a CRM 2.0 strategy. Although the study says that the demand is high, the people asked were unsure about the ways this can be achieved.

  • 43 percent say companies should use social networks to solve customer service issues;
  • 41 percent want businesses to ask for customer feedback on products and services; and
  • 37 percent believe organizations should develop new ways for customers to interact with a brand via applications and widgets.

As the "how" is not clearly defined, yet, there is a good opportunity for early adopters to utilize new Web 2.0 techniques and platforms to engage customers and get into a fruitful conversation with users and potential buyers. Being the first always helps to reach the critical mass that is so important in social networks and the Web 2.0 universe!

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Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Oracle to include social networking in their CRM offering

The solution (called Oracle Sales Prospector) does real-time recommendations based on previous buying behavior.

Not sure where the social network component will fit in there, though...

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Monday, October 13, 2008

Semantic Web

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What is the value of being able to search 124 billion web sites on cuil if I just want to have an answer to a simple question?

The Semantic Web will be the future answer to bring meaning into the fast growing information overload that the Internet delivers. It will be able to answer questions and - combined with mash-ups - show exactly the information we need rather than five thousand search results which I will never ever be able to look at.

In the context of CRM 2.0, the Semantic web will help internally to understand customers better and externally help deliver a unique experience that differentiates from competition.

..more to come...