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Showing posts from 2020

Why Salesreps hate their CRM - and how to improve this

Many CRM systems are still well in the past. They do not do what their users, especially sales people want them to do. They do not see them as helpful. Why not? What can be done to improve the situation? The CRMKonvos team discusses with Denis Pombriant of Beagle Research. Why do salespersons rather clean the bathroom than use their CRM? Do you know why a CRM system cannot be "sexy"? You will not be surprised to learn that technology is only one aspect in this picture. It’s not just the bathroom. A study that was conducted by Beagle Research found a long list of things salespeople would rather do than work with their CRM systems. For instance, waiting in line at the motor vehicles office, having a fight with your significant other, going to the dentist -- you get the idea--are all ahead of CRM. The question is why? And Denis simple answer is that all the other things are finite and have an endpoint but CRM seems to be forever or at least more long term. That says a lot. Still

Digitization, Digitalization, Digital Transformation - A Stake in the Ground

Since about February or March of Anno Domini 2020 we regularly hear about how the Covid crisis is driving “digital transformation”. You now might ask yourself why I put this term into quotes. Bear with me for a minute, it’ll be explained … For sure, this crisis is forcing many a company into enabling its employees to work remotely. It also forced some companies to at least temporarily close physical doors as supply chains and/or delivery of products and services are severely inhibited or even broken. We also see a lot of companies implement interesting hybrid strategies that bring what we thought of being decidedly offline experiences into the online world. A good example for this trend are wineries that lost an important lead generation and sales channel with their temporary inability to host wine tastings in their cellars. Till now the opinion was that nothing can beat the experience of being down there in a wine cellar, surrounded by barrels of ageing wine, musty air, like-minded pe

How to improve collaboration with Fastcall CTI

Since February or March of Anno Domini 2020, the Corona pandemic is making the headlines and is driving digital transformation, or at least the digitalization of businesses. For sure, this crisis has forced and is continuing to force many a company into enabling its employees to work remotely. This has accelerated an already ongoing fundamental change of the way people work. It has also had an impact on work culture. People can no more just drop by a colleague to ask a question, but need to pick up a phone. Meetings do not happen in the meeting room around the corner anymore but by utilizing technology – virtual meeting rooms – voice and video. Salespeople can no more travel to their customers for face-to-face meetings. Instead they were forced to adopt and master virtual meetings, something they didn’t believe they could possibly do in 2019. It seemed far too alien. Many of us have learned that this change is rather an opportunity than a threat. We needed to, and did adapt, on a busin

How to add more Punk to CX

With our guest Adrian Swinscoe the CRMKonvos team walked the line between Punk and CX, discuss what they have in common. Adrian is the author of Punk CX , a book that he is not ashamed to admit was conceived after having a drink or two. Punk is a reaction to the attempt at perfection and an obsession towards technical skill that are a hallmark of Prog Rock. Prog Rock simply appeared overblown. Punk, in contrast, is not about perfection. Instead it is about doing, getting started, with corners and edges. In this sense, Adrian is a punk of CX, and his book is absolutely readable, with quite some food for thought. It is DiY style, just as punk is. But how does this apply to CX? Find out punk style. Watch this great CRMKonvos episode. Of course, we didn't just stick to this but also looked into what are similarities and differences between CX in the US and Europe, and so much more, including the future and microphone latency.

Salesforce, Slack, Facebook, Kustomer - the big epiphany

In the last few days two really interesting acquisitions caught my eye. The obvious one that hardly could be missed, is S lack being acquired by Salesforce for a whopping $27.7 bn, which, to put it into perspective, is $2.2 bn more than Salesforce forecasts as its revenue for the upcoming fiscal year.  The other interesting acquisition is social network behemoth Facebook plucking up Kustomer , a five-year-old company with origins in customer service. What is interesting about Kustomer is that the company promotes managing customer service from the customer (hence the name) angle and not coming from the ticket as the main entity. Kustomer has since positioned itself more into the CRM area, but still with a focus on service “CRM for customer service” and also implemented an AI to help with routing and the end-to-end handling of (simple) cases by chat bots. Digging a little further, one can find that Snapchat also recently acquired , another tech company that specializes in servi

This is the way of SugarCRM - a CRMKonvo

In this conversation we had the pleasure of talking to Clint Oram, chief strategy officer and one of the founders of SugarCRM. We discussed 2021 trends to find out which ones Cllint does see and, of course, which path SugarCRM is following on its trajectory to becoming a platform player and participating in the #ClashOfTitans. This couldn't be covered without discussing the reasons for SugarCRM leaving the initially highly successful path of using Open Source Software (hint: there have been very good reasons) and what it entails to become - and stay - successful. Clint related a very valuable personal story here to make his point: It is not only about having the right idea. There is so much more to it - but watch it in the CRMKonvo.  It being the season, we also asked him about which trends he sees and what customers are asking for. Good answers here. The worst word of the year? "New normal". Well, I cannot but agree here ... although ... something has changed, hasn't

CX, communications platforms and what's great next year

This time, we welcomed Michael Fauscette in our virtual, distributed studio.  With him we discussed what will become 2021 trends, looked at his views on the best and worst buzzwords on the market, the role of CDPs and what an actually usable AI could be. Michael is a renowned analyst and author, with more than 20 years of experience in and around the CRM industry. He is the Chief Research Officer at G2 , an analyst firm that bases that serves companies small to enterprise and that is unique in a sense that its analyses are based on customer feedback. Given that, our discussion of course touched his upcoming book (which sounds like it will be very readable) and the role of analysts — whether they are serving their purpose well and what could be improved. Us being all about CX, the meaning of CX cannot be forgotten. Did you always want to know what a business communications platform is and never dared to ask? Well, Michael has a good answer for you. And then there is photography. As usu

SugarCRM picks up speed and takes on the market

A bit more than one year ago I asked whether SugarCRM is getting its mojo back after the company shed its open source roots in 2014 and got acquired by Accel-KKR in August 2018. End of July 2019 the company published its renewed vision under CEO Craig Charlton. The vision is “to create a world where companies cultivate customers for life by anticipating and fulfilling needs before customers realize they have them”. It revolves around the three topics Intelligent Customer Experience platform and the underlying ‘time-aware’ data model No-Touch Information Management with the idea of enabling users to spend less time entering and searching for data in favor of spending more time with their customers Continuous Cloud Innovation to provide a modern and future proof cloud-based software platform Since then quite some things happened to implement this vision. In addition, SugarCRM held a four-hour virtual analyst summit on November 16, 2020. The Analyst Summit The summit itself was fully

The Value of Focus in A Platform World

Smaller enterprise software vendors today operate in a world where their fortunes may rise and fall on their ability to integrate with one or more cloud computing platforms. In many cases, having a connector or API for multiple platforms is a great means to survive and thrive. But it’s not the only way. Versatility has always been one of the watch words of cloud computing. The ease of adding and updating functions, or of moving to a new platform entirely, created an incentive for vendors to embrace that versatility. The CEO or CFO who is looking out for their company’s future would thus rarely be faulted for trusting vendors whose products work on as many platforms as possible. The CTO, on the other hand, might not share that view. While that role has to allow for future moves their company might make, they are also the person who is most responsible for choosing the best tools for the job and making sure they keep working. For the CTO, a vendor’s ability to serve across multiple platf

CRMKonvo - Customer Experience and how to do it right

This episode starred Nicole France . Nicole is VP and Principal Analyst at Constellation Research. She focuses on digital marketing, sales effectiveness and customer experience. We planned to talk with her about platforms and their role in the ecosystem; eventually we got there after talking shop about the larger challenge of enabling and embracing customer experience. How can a customer have an experience? What does it take for companies? Are they properly set up to deliver? What is the role of culture? We covered lots of questions before even going into techncology, which is a good thing, as customer experience first of all is about people with technology only being an enabler. Only then questions like: Why have platforms become important (again)? What is necessary to make them a success? Are there winning players? What is the role of a CDP in this, if any? Is there a difference between a suite and a platform, and which (hint: there is)? become important. How to make sense of the buz

Salesforce in Acquistion Talks with Slack - Good News or not?

The News Today various media outlets broke the news that Salesforce is in advanced talks with Slack Technologies about a possible acquisition. The news had two effects: Slack stock went up nearly 40 per cent during trading hours while Salesforce stock loses out by 5 percent, which basically says that Salesforce investors are not so convinced about this acquisition being a good thing, whereas Slack investors clearly are. Slack and Salesforce share an integration, which is listed on AppExchange since 2019. There have been speculations on Slack being a good target for Salesforce that date back till August 2016 , basically ever since the integration between Salesforce and Slack got announced. The Bigger Picture There are several aspects to this news. Salesforce already has Chatter, a tool that often gets negative feedback. The company also owns Quip, which is essentially a solution for the collaborative creation of documents and spreadsheets.   And Salesforce has created , as a

Fastcall drives cooperation of Salesforce users with Intercall and solves Covid challenge

  The News Fastcall , a renowned developer of CTI solutions that are exclusively dedicated to Salesforce, recently announced the release of its Intercall solution. Intercall helps teams to communicate and interact internally from within Salesforce. The app allows phone and video communication. Using Intercall, an employee can call coworkers via their Salesforce user profile instead of using a particular phone number, making it unnecessary to know the current location of the coworker or to perform repeat calls due to unavailability. It is a first-of-its-kind Salesforce app and offers video and screen sharing within an integrated Salesforce phone application by leveraging Salesforce and Twilio. Intercall is the latest addition to Fastcall’s suite of applications and is designed to enhance work-from-home productivity for Salesforce users. Phone applications found in the Salesforce AppExchange today, including Fastcall’s namesake application, enable companies to increase productivity by e