Posts Tagged: ‘crm’

CRMforNotes Blog

15. Mai 2014 Posted by Lutz Geschinsky

Ideal wäre es , wenn man hier auch wie in Twitter referenzieren könnte und die Einträge aus dem Blog nach Veröffentlichung direkt hier erscheinen.

[EN] Cloud growth in Germany (and Europe) to be driven by Collaboration and CRM

9. April 2013 Posted by StefanP.

IBM Gwermany Headquarter in Ehningen, where the new Smart Cloud for Social Business Data center resides

We’ve been talking about the cloud for years now. And yes, providers have done plenty to hype it too. But frankly, most customers have been very wary about it, especially in Europe. There are many reasons for that, from fear of job losses in IT to information security. People in many IT departments are far from thrilled about the cloud, of course – they are afraid it might make them obsolete. And their concerns are understandable, especially when you think of the outsourced projects of the past few years that moved more than a couple of IT departments (or parts of them) to external service providers within Europe or even outside of the continent. Cost cutting was the most common rationale. But did this always result in improved quality, better service levels, greater flexibility, and faster response times to user requests? That’s a very controversial question.

The cloud also raises information security concerns. “Where exactly is my data being stored?” is one of them. The Patriot Act has created additional uncertainty and concern, as it allows authorities in the U.S. to access the cloud data of European businesses. This worry is usually paired with the demand that cloud providers store their cloud data in Europe, out of the reach of the U.S. government. All global cloud providers have to deal with this issue, and they are all familiar with the demands for a European data center and a guarantee that data will only be processed in Europe. So it’s no wonder that IBM is opening a new data center for social business in Ehningen, Germany, headquarters of IBM Deutschland. The move is intended to dispel these security concerns.

User companies gradually seem to be changing their views on the cloud. The Analysts from Experton Group say that cloud computing has long been a fact of life, and it sees social collaboration as the critical driver of cloud growth. It forecasts that cloud spending will increase from €313.5 million to over €2.2 billion in 2017. One of the reasons for this, says Dr. Carlo Velten, a senior advisor at Experton Group, is that providers (such as IBM) are pushing social business and collaboration so much. It’s interesting to note that Experton Group predicts spending on ERP in the cloud will fall slightly. Does this mean that companies think ERP is too sensitive for the cloud?

Public cloud, private cloud, hybrid cloud – some definitions

A public cloud is where the provider makes resources available to the public over the Internet. Personal webmail services are a common example. IBM SmartCloud for Social Business is another pay service that uses the public cloud.

Private cloud services, on the other hand, are usually run by companies for their own employees only. A private cloud offers users within the company the added-value features of the cloud, such as scalable IT infrastructure or installation-free and maintenance-free IT applications, which are run over a Web browser.

A hybrid cloud is a mix of these two cloud types. It runs some services through public providers on the Internet, but other applications and data – usually confidential material – are processed within the company.

(This information is based on definitions by Fraunhofer.)

In the study “Cloud Monitor 2013” – unfortunately only available in German language – the German industry association BITKOM, KPMG, and PAC are also predicting strong cloud growth. In addition, the study sheds light on the mixed feelings and polarized attitudes that companies have about the cloud. Private clouds still enjoy greater acceptance than public clouds, but now more companies endorse public clouds and are willing to use them. The study also identifies collaboration (and customer relationship management, or CRM) as key drivers for public clouds. The advantages offered by public cloud solutions are particularly suited to these tasks, it says.

All these studies suggest that the cloud will more rapidly gain a stronger foothold in the market as time goes on. In my opinion, the first services to move to the cloud will be those where cost savings and greater efficiency make the case. E-mail is one example, and collaboration is another. The solutions will be highly standardized and will have very clearly defined functions. However, customized solutions are hard to run in a public cloud. These will continue to run inside companies or in a private cloud where it is easier to make adjustments. IBM Notes and Domino are two very good illustrations. There is no reason not to use a cloud for e-mail components and calendars. Custom-developed Domino-based solutions, on the other hand, are better off running in the company data center, in a private cloud, where they are easier to modify and maintain. The result is a hybrid structure, with one part of the IT running in a public cloud and another part running in an organization’s own infrastructure or in a private cloud. This hybrid model is probably what many companies will end up choosing.

It also looks very likely that more and more services, especially those involving social collaboration, will move to the public cloud. This will in particualr give give small and medium-sized companies the chance to use advanced social software without having to run these solutions themselves.

Quelle und Copyright: Cloud-Monitor 2013 c lo ud- c omp uting in Deutschland – Status quo und Perspektiven (Bitkom, KPMG, PAC)

The “Cloud Monitor 2013″ shows where solutions are used in a Public Cloud Dark blue represents in use, middle blue planned and light blue in discussion.

Filed under: English Tagged: Cloud, Collaboration, CRM, Germany, SocBiz

[EN] Social Selling – being a fly on the wall of your customers …

8. November 2012 Posted by StefanP.

It becomes more and more a hot topic: Social selling, how to use Social Media in your sales cycle

  • to get information on your potential customers,
  • to connect with potential customers,
  • to listen and identify opportunities
  • to influence …

This posting from Mark Fidelman and Jim Keenanon Frobes  is great. I wrote up my summary on Otto (the old-fashioned, still successful seller) and Julian (the young guy leveraging Social in his sales process) a few months ago – unfortunately in German. Perhaps I have to get it translated.

Social media is now a powerful communication platform and communication will always be at the heart of selling.

Selling through social channels (social selling) is the closest thing to being a fly on the wall in your customers, prospects and competitor’s world. Using Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and other social media – supplies information that is almost impossible to obtain through traditional means. …

The phrase; “Go where you customers are.” has always been true and now it’s truer than ever. Your customers and prospects use social media. Their employees use social media. Their fans and detractors use social media, and they are ALL talking. …

Customers are changing how they buy. They are engaging vendors much later in the sales cycle. They have access to more information than ever before. Their conversations, thoughts, frustrations and concerns are becoming increasingly more public and visible. Their customers are expressing their thoughts, frustrations, and concerns publicly. All of this is changing how sales is performed and how quota is met.

To play in this environment and to access this information means sales people need to embrace social selling. It means they need to have a Twitter account. It means they need to participate in LinkedIn groups. It means they need to comment on blogs.

via The Rise of Social Salespeople – Forbes.

Social CRM moves your business to where your customers are going

18. Oktober 2012 Posted by Lars Basche



Guest post by Chris Bucholtz


Imagine that, for some reason, your business decided to serve only customers who called you on the telephone. Walk-ups would be ignored; mail orders go directly into the circular file; emails are be deleted without ever being opened.


That would be dumb, wouldn’t it?


But that’s a little like the attitude that people who deride social CRM are bringing to their businesses.


Increasingly, customers are living their lives in social media. It’s where they talk about their lives – people, places and things. In fact, you might sell some of those things they’re talking about.


So why would you deliberately ignore those conversations? By not having a social CRM strategy, that is what you’re doing. It’s like you’re excluding potential customer information because it’s being provided in a format that’s not convenient for you.


So start taking advantage of social CRM and social media. First, start listening to what’s being said about your business, and bring technologies into play that allow you to record and organize that data. Next, start thinking about ways to use what you’re hearing to identify places where you can join into the conversation. The word “social” implies a two-way exchange of ideas; that means opportunities to identify potential new customers and to foster loyalty with the customers you already have.


This can seem like a lot of work – and it can be. But, like anything in the CRM world, the key to effectively introducing these new concepts is to match them with pain points that exist in your organization. Start gradually and expand. If your sales team is lacking data to build rapport with potential customers, use social to give them more data. If support is being criticized in social media, build a social component into your customer support organization to allow them to satisfy these customers. If marketing is searching for insight on how the company is perceived by its target customers, give them the ability to listen in to what customers are saying.


Social CRM is not a replacement for CRM – none of these capabilities can be fully utilized without a CRM solution deployed and functioning as a foundation for your efforts. But it will open up an entirely new dimension for your CRM efforts – and since it’s a dimension where your customers are dwelling more and more every day, it makes sense that you join them there.



With 17 years as a technology and business under his belt, Chris Bucholtz took over the role of editor in chief of the CRM Outsiders blog in 2011. He first focused on customer relationship management as the editor of InsideCRM, then moved to Forecasting Clouds in 2009 to continue honing his views on how the discipline of CRM can impact the entire business.

SugarCRM becomes the core of IBM’s next-generation CRM » Ovum

21. August 2012 Posted by Stefan Pfeiffer

IBM has a number of internal transformation projects under way, all of which have been brought into the CIO’s office. One very significant transformation is the move away from a traditional sales approach of micro-managing the sales representatives, toward “social selling”, which leverages a variety of technologies, social and otherwise. When IBM started developing this next-generation selling method, the team was not focused on “social” but instead on dramatically increasing the productivity of the sales team. As IBM looked at the challenges of a typical sales team member, a variety of issues surfaced that began pointing toward using social, collaboration, analytics, and other technologies and applications, not only to increase the efficiency of sales representatives, but also to enhance internal collaboration as well as external conversations. ...

Recommendations for enterprise and public sector IT

While still a nascent concept and not yet productized, enterprises and public sector organizations looking for a new approach for taking their relationships with customers and constituents to a higher level should engage IBM in conversation. The outcome in the short term would not necessarily be to buy anything, but to use the insights for long-term IT and CRM strategies and planning.

Large enterprise and public sector organizations with a CRM procurement project under way or planned should definitely include SugarCRM on the vendor long list for evaluation along with other vendors they are considering.

Very interesting view by Carter Lusher from Ovum. I am looking forwrd to use the new Social Selling-solution soon.

This video shows some of the integrations between SugarCRM and IBM Connections:


Social CRM Requires a Commitment to Becoming a Social Business – SugarCRM Sponsor des IBM Social Business JamCamp

4. Oktober 2011 Posted by Stefan Pfeiffer

Social CRM is really an additional layer on top of the CRM foundation. It requires that commitment to CRM — but it also requires a commitment to becoming a social business, one that embraces the revolution in communications and the shift in the control of the conversation from the business to the customer.

"Social" hat einen enormen Einfluss darauf, wie man als Unternehmen seine Kundenbeziehung gestaltet. Das reicht vom Kundendienst bis zur Produktentwicklung, wie Chris Bucholtz von SugarCRM in seinem Posting auf CMSwire beschreibt. Es erfordert eine neues Verständnis, eine Erweiterung des herkömmlichen CRM-Prozesses ebenso wie die Akzeptanz der neuen sozialen Kommunikationsformen, um so den Weg zu einem "Social Business" zu gehen. Ich habe es ja auch kurzem für Vertriebsmitarbeiter skizziert.

Brillant fasst Chris zusammen, dass es nicht darum geht, dass eine Reihe von Youngstern auf ihren iPhones herumspielen. Es geht um ein grundlegendes Verständnis:

A social business is one that understands the opportunities that the social media revolution presents and shifts its thinking and its information-handling processes to take advantage of those opportunities.

Your customers have all gone social. Your employees have all gone social. Your competitors are becoming social. At a certain point, you need to suck it up and recognize that this is the way the world now interacts.

Tom Schuster, Vice President and General Manager of SugarCRM Europe, wird am 19. Oktober auf dem IBM Social Business JamCamp über Social Business und Social CRM sprechen. Ich freue mich darauf und danke SugarCRM für die Unterstützung als Sponsor der Veranstaltung.