By David Sims
David at firstcoffee d*t biz
The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is "The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything:"
If you're interested: Nucleus Research, a vendor of information technology research and advisory services, has released its Siebel CRM On Demand Guidebook.
Available at http://www.nucleusresearch.com/, the book "highlights the experiences of both recent and long-time customers" of Oracle's Siebel CRM On Demand, prescribing "best practices for deployment, fine-tuning and missteps to avoid in maximizing value from Siebel CRM On Demand," according to Nucleus officials.
"In our analysis of Siebel customers we found that the most successful ones saw CRM not as an application to be deployed but as a framework for how their organizations interacted with customers," said Rebecca Wettemann, Vice President of Research, Nucleus Research.
Nucleus found many Siebel CRM On Demand customers were standardizing CRM across multiple geographies and offices without the need for IT resources at each site and providing on-demand CRM as needed for departments or workgroups that don't need access to full Siebel Enterprise functionality.
The Guidebook also provides analysis on how to prevent common CRM pitfalls such as identifying internal "CRM skeptics" and removing the "old school" CRM mindset.
CRM for nonprofits vendor Kintera has announced that the American Lung Association has renewed their Kintera Sphere software as a service, for use in the organization's fundraising efforts.
The American Lung Association wants Kintera's social CRM platform, including a content management system, constituent relationship management (CRM), e-mail and communications, Web sites, events technology, and advocacy tools.
Todd Whitley, vice president of online services for the American Lung Association, said they've been using the Kintera social CRM system for years, and it has "enabled us to offer a robust Web site that provides an abundance of targeted information on lung diseases from asthma to cancer," as well as "a comprehensive view of constituent interactions and relationships.”
As the oldest voluntary health organization in the United States, the American Lung Association has over 200 chapters across the country. In 2003, the organization’s online donations skyrocketed to $960,000 from $320,000.
Guess what the world’s largest financial institution by assets is? Nope. Japan Post. Right, that would've been your second guess.
Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff has announced that his company has won a big contract to provide CRM (customer relationship management) to this the world’s largest financial institution by assets, in a deal currently covering 5,000 users.
It's easily the largest deal for salesforce.com in the Japanese market, and the company hopes it will act as a magnet for more deals in the world's second-largest national economy:
“We believe that this initial agreement with Japan Post will become a hallmark to many Japanese companies to realize that if Japan Post has made this important decision that they can make this important decision to go to on-demand computing as well,” Benioff was quoted by Indian industry journal TechWhack as saying.
First Coffee's former stomping grounds, CRMGuru.com, has changed its name to CustomerThink.com, to better "reflect the Web site's mission of helping business leaders succeed with customer-centric business strategies," according to Bob Thompson, the boyishly handsome founder of CRMGu… er, CustomerThink.
The time was ripe for change, according to Thompson, CEO of CustomerThink Corp. Although the term "CRM" has been a popular buzzword for more than a decade, and theoretically means a business strategy, it has taken on a technology slant in the market that appears unlikely to ever change, he lamented.
"While technology is an important enabling tool, and essential for managing customer information, it's only a portion of our mission," said Thompson, who has admitted to listening to Metallica on occasion.
In Thompson's view, CRM includes customer strategy, goals and metrics, people and organization, process and experience design and technology. Yet what he sees in practice are usually reflections of technology-laden CRM definitions.
His own research, conducted at the sprawling CustomerThink campus which has dominated Burlingame, California since the late 1950s, has found many people actually consider Customer Experience Management to be different from CRM. Other research has found customers evenly split between "tastes great" and "less filling," and that the fifth doctor sometimes knows what he's talking about.
Dick Lee, oenophile and founder and principal of customer-alignment consulting firm High-Yield Methods and a member of the original CRMGuru panel of experts when the site launched in 2000, lauded the move. "The name change from CRMGuru to CustomerThink descriptively clarifies the site's long-time content focus--which is on customer-centric business practices, not the CRM software that sometimes supports these practices," said Lee, who has been spotted occupying courtside seats for Minnesota Timberwolves playoff games.
Britain's Innov8 Technology, specialist supplier of CRM vendor Sage Software, has partnered with document management and imaging company Version One to deliver "paperless office" technology to Innov8’s 500 Sage 200, Sage Line 100, MMS and ‘Inn’ customers.
This new partnership enables Innov8’s customers to electronically store, deliver, retrieve and authorize business documents such as invoices, purchase orders and dispatch notes directly from their software system. With Version One’s Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology, data from incoming business documents, such as invoices, is also automatically captured, verified and then uploaded to the core finance/ERP system, reducing the time and costs associated with manual data entry.
Marketing process optimization solutions are "revolutionizing workflows, creating greater efficiencies and reducing departmental expenditures," addressing the needs of marketers "unable to be met with existing customer relationship management (CRM)," according to a new analysis from Frost & Sullivan, titled "World Marketing Process Optimization Solutions Markets."
The study reveals that the market earned revenues of $216 million in 2006 and estimates this to reach $728 million in 2013.
"The MPOS market is a value chain of product suites that provides firms the ability to execute marketing functions including planning, creation of print and digital media, budgeting key resources, collecting and archiving marketing content and digital media, distributing, workflow management and performance analysis," says Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst Aimee Roberts.
MPOS products offer ways to help with accountability of workflows, project management and measuring outcomes. The idea is that by enabling organizations to monitor and access individual and team workflows, project cycles are shortened and the company can reduce expenditures and usage of organizational resources.
"Coordination across different media channels has become more complex. The addition of new channels and calendaring channel usage across different campaigns or products proves to be a Herculean task as customers have become less receptive to direct mailings and e-mails," says Roberts.
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