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Connected CRM: Implementing a Data-Driven, Customer-Centric Business Strategy by David S. Williams

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Chapter 5 Customer Strategy

Creating Your Competitive Advantage

cCRM's AMBITIOUS GOAL

Connected customer relationship marketing (cCRM) is about integration, and that integration centers around a common construct: the customer. More than ever, building an enterprise-wide, customer-centric strategy that is able to drive investment decisions across the organization is critical to establishing sustainable competitive advantage.

Enterprise-wide, in this context, signifies that objectives are established from the top down and permeate all functions: customer and noncustomer facing. The traditional organization has not only allowed but expected customer-facing departments to establish their own customer strategy. Often I see companies that corner themselves into inconsistent customer treatment across the organization. For example, marketing staff may establish customer treatments based on their definition of customer priorities, whereas the call center team develops a set of tactics based on yet another set of independently defined customer priorities and the website team, acting autonomously, does the same (Figure 5.1).

All of these well-intentioned individuals in different departments are doing their best to deliver on a corporate goal (typically a product-centric goal). They recognize the need for some degree of customer centricity, but the lack of a top-down customer strategy requires these individuals to (1) concentrate on filling that void by creating their own customer strategy, ...

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