CRM: Gaining a competitive advantage by building relationships with customers 

Definition: Customer relationship management (CRM) is the optimisation of all customer touch points through the distribution and application of customer information to keep customers coming back.

The potential of any business is only as strong as it's relationship with its customers. How you understand their needs and wants and how you respond to them is what customer relationship management is all about.

CRM is a process.

It's not just another campaign or sales promotion.

It's more than database marketing.

It's about creating an experience and a relationship with customers.

Implementing a successful CRM initiative requires a technology platform but the CRM tool does not ensure success. Maintaining existing customers and finding or winning new customers requires developing and maintaining superior relationships with customers.

A CRM initiative enables you to extend the lifetime value of your customer. For such an initiative to be successful, it must have several essential elements:

  • Clear understanding of and commitment to the company's customer focus
  • Vigilant adherence to detailed goals
  • Commitment from both management and staff
  • Constant awareness of the customer's view point
  • Crystal clear business strategy
  • CRM enables you to secure the future by distinguishing how you will do business in the future compared to today:

    Which customers are you serving today versus the future?

    Through which channels do you reach customers today and how will you reach them in the future?

    Who are your competitors today... in the future?

    What's the basis for your competitive advantage today? What about the future?

    What skills or capabilities make you unique today? Will this need to change in the future?

    For over 25 years we have assisted our clients to recognise their customers, understand their needs, uncover the issues and problems and identify opportunities for growth. Optimum results can be achieved through a 4 stage process:

    1. Diagnostics - this initial phase helps determine the CRM vision, set business objectives and define project success for a customer focused strategy. What are the immediate and longer term barriers to building deep and lasting relationships with customers?

    2. Discovery - this is the stage that helps differentiate customers by values and needs through research, mapping and segmenting customers. It identifies your most valuable customers

    3. Development - here is where the strategies are created, tested and modified. How do we reach and maintain profitable customers and build meaningful relationships that deliver consistent return on investment?

    4. Deployment - implementing CRM initiatives is a cross-functional and multi-faceted task and requires buy-in from all levels within the organisation. What is the most effective method of delivering the CRM vision to stakeholders?

    The Origination CRM statement of purpose is to "Enable our clients to gain competitive advantage through the building and maintaining of relationships with their customers.

    Since the inception of Origination CRM in 1989, we have continued to deliver strategies and solutions that have helped our clients identify, attract, develop and retain customers.

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