8 Additional Answers
(Director, Client Services, Raybec Communications)
Interesting question. I would not necessarily agree that we have 'failed' at CRM, but would concede that CRM has not reached it potential and we risk having the same experience with 'social CRM' - whatever that is - if we do not learn from our experience with CRM.
The issue with both CRM and social CRM is the emphasis on the technology - selection, implementation and upgrades. CRM and scial CRM are not about technology. Certainly both of these concepts are enabled by technology. And that technology is becoming increasingly powerful. But at their core CRM and social CRM are business strategies - not materially different than Marketing, Sales, Product Development or any other area of business strategy.
As with those strategy areas there is a vast difference between development and execution. It is in the area of execution where CRM has struggled. CRM has failed to make it into the mainstream consciousness of many organizations and, as a result, has not been given the consistent, ongoing attention it needs to remain relevant and become fully realized.
Unless and until the strategy underlying CRM and social CRM become part of how organizations operate and are, therefore, subject to ongoing review and evaluation they will continue to lag more mainstream functional areas. This means that organizational leadership must participate in the development of crm/social CRM strategy and actively support systems which reward successful execution of same.
Michael A Brown
From DM News in 2003: “A survey of nearly 700 companies conducted by research firm Gartner indicates that 42% of enterprises that purchased CRM software licenses have yet to install them.”
From B-to-B magazine in 2006: “A large majority of b-to-b marketers (87%) have little confidence in their customer data, according to an on-site survey of attendees at (a DMA event.) Fifty-four percent of those surveyed by Extraprise said the lack of collaboration between sales and marketing is their biggest challenge. (Only) fifty-two percent said they integrate sales and marketing systems. Fifty nine percent said customer data reside in at least four different internal locations … and 23% in more than ten locations.”
Now it’s 2011 and … hey wait a minute … wasn’t CRM supposed to prevent or fix all that? Haven’t businesses spent somewhere between a gazillion and a megazillion dollars on CRM? And Gartner says it still isn’t right? Wow! Tom and Larry must have laughed all the way to the bank. Failure? You be the judge.
(Account Director, Alogient)
I'd have to agree with Mr. Sovie. I also believe that introducing Social CRM into the mix may end-up complicating the remediation of the underlying problem with CRM implementation, or 'Failure' as you put it.
I would be very interested in exploring the ways people view an organisational implementation strategy for a CRM compared to that of an Intranet solution such as SharePoint. While I haven't come across any research suggesting that less time is spent on the CRM side, I would have to guess that enterprises invest more heavily in change management associated the implementation of an intranet solution.
Is it possible that CRM's are implemented under the presumption that they are easy and intuitive. In my industry, we spend weeks with clients planning change strategies, governance models and we even set up internal committees to champion and manage new enterprise technology solutions. But admittedly, when it comes to CRM's there seems to be no such planning.
And what about sales training or prospect conversion workflow? I'd be curious to know how many companies invest in scoping out a common sales methodology for achieving steady and non-cyclical sales, and then, how many of those have properly streamlined their methodologies in the enterprise CRM. If your fundamentals are wrong, how could your usage of a CRM make this problem any better?
Is it possible then that we implement CRM's thinking that they will simply repair our flimsy sales methodologies? If that's where we are at, then I think we have found the source of our problem.
(CEO, Asuret Inc.)
I found the article correctly it points out that successful CRM is not a single go-live event, but rather a process that begins when the organization first creates a customer strategy.
Usually, we think about CRM projects that have a defined start and end, which is the go-live point. From a project management perspective, of course we must create Gannt chats and similar schedules. But that approach creates the illusion that CRM ends with the go-live point.
In fact, successful CRM requires ongoing relationship with customers, which is not a one-shot deal. To me, that's the great lesson of the post.
(Problem Solver, chrysalis marketing)
yikes and thank goodness:
we hear fail and cringe. The failure I have seen, having been on of the 1st 'CRM' consultants back in the mid-'90's is that we stopped realizing that Customer Relationship Management - for the B2B practitioner, at least - is a strategy, perhaps the definitive B2B strategy.
We called for sales and marketing to be elevated to the boardroom level (cf., e.g., Adrian Slywotsky's writings) and in some ways they were. We failed to prevent CRM and now CEM from being seen as a 'packaged solution' (whether server based or cloud).
So, please forgive me for submitting the definition i like :
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a strategy based on customer focus, on customer knowledge, and on delighting the customer. CRM is real-time, actionable, customer knowledge management. The best CRM approaches are holistic, involving all facets of your business and demonstrating accountability for results. CRM becomes a guiding philosophy and framework for doing business and includes:
• differentiating and optimizing the customer experience
• building customer knowledge to provide value to both the customer and your business
• taking a portfolio management approach to customers – not every customer is worth keeping!
• using “value “ as defined by the customer - at each point in the customer’s lifecycle and with all
of your customer contacts
Loyalty with the right, core customers. Profitable loyalty:
How do you identify, acquire, and keep your most profitable customers?
How do you deliver the best customer experience?
thanks and best, ngp
There have been some great points raised by previous posters on here and I agree that there are no quick fixes with a CRM solution. It seems to me like the biggest problems arise from poor training/implementation and design issues with the product itself. We are trying to develop something that combats these problems in an innovative way. You guys are all professionals. Would you mind giving me your 2 cents on our new CRM product? http://bit.ly/qvUexd
We are happy to share our findings.
It's true. Saying that Social CRM killed CRM is like saying the automobile killed the horse. And it's like saying electric cars will kill combustion engines. Instead, just like the automobile made the horse race happier, electric cars will make combustion engines proper race cars. And Social CRM or Network CRM will be just something more to be encompassed in the CRM strategy your company needs to have. Client Relationship Management is more than just implementing a CRM System. It's about networking, sales, marketing. It's about keeping the clients happy and your prospects base properly fed.
(Partner, Stitely & Karstetter, CPAs)
CRM fails when the final objectives haven't been well defined. If you don't know what you want CRM to do, it won't do it. Buying a system and then trying to define the objectives is a sure way to experience buyer's remorse.