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  • CRM Strategy: Difficult but Imperative to Design

  • Amit S. Chakrapani, Ph.D - Founder & Managing Director

CRM Strategy: Difficult but Imperative to Design

crm-strategy-difficult-but-imperative-to-design

Gartner in 2001 reported about the failures of 50% CRM initiatives and programme and since then it has diverted the attention of the experts, researchers and professionals towards exploring the reasons for this failure. The report came with an admonition that an over-weight of technology on the strategic direction was responsible for many of the reasons for failure.

The same has been supplemented by Forrester in 2009 depicting that a little had changed but reported a 47% failure rate among CRM strategies and the reason for these failures also was sounded in the name of technology dictating the strategy, rather than the other way around.

Tough the CRM industry has witnessed a sea change in last 7 years but still yet to learn the lessons of the past?
As advocated, CRM is a strategic tool that empowers the human resource to get better engage with customers within the framework of a customer-centric strategy.

Andrew Brittain, MD of digital agency Advantec says that even after having a CRM programme, if it is not achieving what was expected then the absence of a strategic plan may be the reason. And even those that do have a CRM strategy would be wise to revisit it regularly to guarantee that it is relevant for motive in an era of shifting customer behaviors and new growing channels.

Starting Point:
Designing of a CRM Strategy requires a large scale of efforts and set of exercises as it needs to take concern on the historical business processes which deal with customers directly and indirectly.

The base of every strategy should commence with thought for the assortment of the potential a company has and contain each step during the development, from designing the business process till technology selection and people. The fractional approach in designing this strategy by concentrating on one or two factors of these and overlooking others can create problems further, as each element of this strategy designated to serve the customer. If one part drops down, a ripple effect is resulted across the entire chain and set of elements.

Above all, the customer should be kept at the centre of CRM strategy instead of product and service. No doubt that it will completely change the thought processes in some cases, but as an important shift the whole team will understand from the start.

Steps for building CRM strategy:

  1. Understand the issues and challenges while interacting with customer.
  2. Identify customer journey.
  3. Clear vision across the Organization.
  4. Create cultural readiness to adopt a customer-centric approach
  5. Draft an implementation plan
  6. Select appropriate people / team
  7. Prepare an effective communication plan
  8. Provide compressive Training within the Organization
  9. Fix Benchmarks for measuring success of strategic initiatives.
  10. Celebration of excellence once it is achieved

The strategy must make sure a continuing process, going on to supervise, evaluate and improve the CRM, even after the CRM solution is chosen and integrated.

Strategic Priorities:

  • CRM objectives
  • Customer Requirements
  • Customer journeys
  • Strategic Data and System plan
  • Content strategy and process
  • CRM System selection
  • Training and Development

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Amit S. Chakrapani, Ph.D - Founder & Managing Director

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Amit Chakrapani is CEO and Managing Director of CRM ACADEMY OF ASIA. He is responsible for all strategic activities for the company including membership engagement, expansions, strategic business planning, customer acquisition programs.

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