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Where Customer Service Goes to Die
July 30, 2013
Social customer service has now become a key point of contact between brands and their customers. Consumers, particularly within the Millennial demographic, take to Facebook, Twitter and other social networks when they have a problem. Sixty percent of 18-24 year olds go to social media when they have an issue, and companies have been quick to respond to this shift in customer behavior.
Experian Steps Up Its Social Engagement Push
July 25, 2013
It can be difficult enough to market to consumers through one channel, but trying to work across channels compounds that difficulty considerably. Enter Experian Marketing Services, which recently upgraded its cross-channel marketing platform with several new features. Experian regularly updates its application, said the company's Jeff Hassemer.
Adobe Puts Marketers Into More Social Situations
July 19, 2013
Adobe has pushed further into marketing automation with the launch of Adobe Social, an application that expands the company's integrations with social networking sites and pretty much gives users a 360-degree view of their customers. Integrated with Flickr, Foursquare, Instagram and LinkedIn, Social will, in essence, enable real-time monitoring across thousands of social networks.
Don't Look Now, but Mobile Privacy Regulations Are on the Way
July 09, 2013
The issue of mobile privacy has been simmering for years, and it's long been apparent that there will be some movement at the government level sooner or later. This week, sooner would probably be the better guess -- especially if the European Commission is included. In the last few days, more allegations about U.S. government spying activities have emerged.
Pipeliner 5.2 Keeps CRM in Sync
July 08, 2013
After making its beta debut back in 2009, Pipeliner CRM software recently graduated to version 5.2, bringing with it the ability to automatically sync data in near real time -- for both Mac and PC computers -- locally or through the cloud. "This is key for salespeople that work globally," said Nikolas Kimla, founder and managing partner of Pipelinersales.
Mobile Privacy Laws Are on the Horizon
June 25, 2013
This past May mobile app developers dodged a bullet when a California state court sided with Delta Airlines in a dispute over its mobile app. California's attorney general had sued Delta, alleging that the company violated the state's mobile privacy law, which requires a company to clearly state that users' personal information is being collected.
Intercom Connections Aid $6M Funding Round
June 21, 2013
Intercom, which offers businesses a tool to create personalized communications with customers, has secured some $6 million in a Series A round of funding. The Social+Capital Partnership, founded by former Facebook VP Chamath Palihapitiya, handled the fundraising. Some prominent tech players have attached their names to Intercom, including Twitter founder Biz Stone and Facebook exec Paul Adams.
Your Social Media Manager Needs to Know Your Business
June 20, 2013
We all know by now that social media is important for business success. It plays a role in sales, marketing and support. Then there's the idea of social CRM -- on a basic level, the inclusion of social media-generated data in the customer record -- which can help shift the way a business interacts with customers to a more intimate and effective level. That's common knowledge.
Thunderhead.com Smooths Out the Wrinkles in Customer Communication
June 17, 2013
Almost a year after launching its ONE Correspond for Salesforce, Thunderhead.com rolled out version 2.0. A part of the company's flagship ONE Engagement Platform, ONE Correspond for Salesforce allows users to create communications for customers. Via Salesforce's Chatter, it also has strong collaborative features that give users a way to review, edit and approve documents internally.
5 Places Customer Relationships Go to Die
June 14, 2013
Building a customer relationship -- the kind that lasts a long time -- is a not an easy thing. There are lots of occasions where things can go awry, touch points where signals can get crossed and communications that can unwittingly turn a customer off. In a lot of cases, the conclusion is triggered by something the business does that brings the relationship to a premature end.
Where CRM and BPM Meet
June 13, 2013
Pegasystems held PegaWorld in "PegOrlando" this week, and a good show it was. I have always wondered about the difference between CRM (social and otherwise) and BPM, or business process management, so I was happy to attend. Both CRM and BPM deal with the interaction between the vendor and customer, and each is involved in doing the things that make customers come back.
InsideView Provides New Insights Into Sales Leads
May 17, 2013
InsideView earlier this month debuted a new marketing offering housed on its InsideView CRM Intelligence Platform. This first iteration of InsideView for Marketing focuses on automated lead enrichment capabilities, said Marc Perramond, VP of product. It was built with an eye to enhancing a company's lead records with social, media and financial information.
Sorry, the CRM Niche Is Full at the Moment
May 15, 2013
There are two questions that emerging companies in the CRM space hear when they face the analysts: When are you going public? Why don't you build out a full CRM capability? The first question is easily and deftly handled by most executives, and it must be. An IPO has its own cadence, and the Securities and Exchange Commission is very keen to protect its turf.
Salesforce Communities Pick Up Where Portals Left Off
May 03, 2013
Salesforce has announced that a product it first unveiled last summer, Salesforce Communities, will go live this summer. Since its original debut, Communities has been tweaked to take into account user views and feedback. Salesforce's user community got a taste of similar functionality last month with the company's rollout of Chatter Topics and Expertise.
New Tools Play Up Twitter Games, Polls for CRM
May 02, 2013
Fan Appz provided more tools for digital marketers Wednesday when it added a suite of Twitter features to its real-time customer feedback platform. The new features help brands interact with followers by running polls, hashtag games and loyalty-based reward activities on the social network. Those interactions can help build a brand's database.
The Hidden Risks of Mobile CRM, Part 2
April 19, 2013
Mobile marketing may just be in its infancy, but it already has ushered in a world of new risks -- or rather, existing risks that have been repackaged. They range from running afoul of still-developing regulations to security concerns, to consumers misinterpreting content. As people connect with the Internet through multiple access points, keeping a marketing message consistent is becoming more essential.
Doubling Down on Data
April 17, 2013
About ten years ago, I wrote a paper that predicted that analytics and social media would converge in CRM. I believed that for two reasons. First, I believed social media was inevitable, though I had no idea what form it would take. Facebook was not on my radar and had not officially launched, MySpace was something for kids, and Twitter had definitely not been invented yet.
Kana Adds Context, Subtracts Search
April 16, 2013
Kana Software on Tuesday debuted its next generation of Kana Enterprise, a multichannel customer service application with functionality for both the agent-based desktop and self-service. Its features include case management; Web self-service; mobile chat; co-browsing; social listening, analytics and community engagement; email, campaign and white mail management; and advanced knowledge management.
Blackbaud Gives Fundraisers New Tools, Then Gets Out of the Way
April 15, 2013
Blackbaud, a CRM vendor that specializes in the nonprofit sector, has rolled out a new release offering additional social and mobile functionality. The end goal of the various upgrades -- which range from social scoring to the ability to run on a number of different tablets -- is to allow users to be able to spend more time with donors, said Eric de Jaeger, VP of product management, enterprise CRM solutions.
The Hidden Risks of Mobile CRM, Part 1
April 12, 2013
As mobile marketing evolves, so do its risks. The Federal Trade Commission last month released its updated "Dot Com" guidelines. An update long in coming -- the first since the report was released in 2000 -- the guidelines take special note of mobile. In short, they state that the same rules that apply to ads in newspapers, radio and television apply to mobile devices -- and social media too, for that matter.

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