More than just made-up jargon

Reading the feature “Blinded by Science” (MW February 7) I was not surprised by the cynicism among some marketers about the effectiveness of CRM.

Often, those buying CRM solutions know little about what they are buying and how it will help them in building profitable relationships with their customers, because many CRM strategies in the market have promised so much in the past, but failed to deliver. There is a real fear among marketers of buying a very expansive white elephant.

What potential purchasers of CRM solutions must look for before investing is delivery of customer knowledge, something many CRM strategies ignore. True customer insight is only delivered through customer knowledge management (CKM): CRM might create the infrastructure to communicate with consumers, but to build a profitable relationship you truly need to understand who these people are. CKM is the next stage of CRM – providing the insight through business intelligence to deliver an understanding about who your customers are, what their profile is, their habits and a picture of how they like to communicate.

CKM allows you to really get under the skin of consumers, to put a value on your relationship with them and deliver a relationship that is profitable.

So when thinking of CRM remember CKM for maximum return on investment.

Paul Hughes

Head of marketing

Prophit Share

Cheltenham

Gloucestershire

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