Microsoft, Say It Loud: “I’m Hosted and I’m Proud!”


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As many of you know, I’ve generally been a Microsoft booster, rather than one of their silly “evil empire” detractors. When it comes to their new CRM initiative, I’m rather impressed.

In fact, I really like the idea of the single code base that Microsoft CRM Live is going to use, which is literally the only way a hybrid model could possibly work.

But that’s not why I’m writing this.

I’m writing this because I think Microsoft is making a mistake right now that they need to rectify quickly if they want to compete in the on demand market at all.

I attended the Worldwide Partner conference and was treated incredibly well by Microsoft, had some excellent meetings, though am waiting on a couple of followups still, and was generally excited by what I saw, and so were the partners. Brad Wilson did a great job of the announcement of Microsoft CRM Live and there was a TON of press coverage for the product at the time, much of it positive and the buzz was actually there – which was something to really get going and build on.

Building on that buzz and maintaining presence and momentum over the ensuing months was very important, because the actual product/service wasn’t being released until 2008 so making sure that humming in the foreground continued was something that needed to be taken care of.

It hasn’t been done at all.

Since that Denver conference (BTW, if in Denver, hang out on the 16th St. Mall. Its awesome), the amount of bee-sound has been just a bit lower than zero and there has been very little visibility for Microsoft CRM Live at all.

That is a BIG mistake.

This isn’t the same world it was when Microsoft easily dominated because of superior products and determined sales people and Bill Gates.

For every day they don’t do something, their rivals at, NetSuite, RightNow and any other on demand service out there are getting the attention of those that Microsoft needs to be waving frantically at.

At some point, they reach a stage where they just won’t get much attention – though they may market like crazy.

They should be out there maintaining the momentum they started to build in June at the conference. They should NOT forget this is a product we are not going to be seeing for months yet.


Yet, Phil Wainwright’s ZDNet column “Microsoft CRM Live Is A Dud” is what comes up third on a Google search of “Microsoft CRM Live.”

That’s THIRD, number 3, trois, tres, trei, two further down from the top, on the front google search result page in a prominent way, as in VERY VISIBLE WHEN THERE IS NOTHING NEW FROM MICROSOFT VISIBLE.

Microsoft, think about that. That is just shameful.

Get on the stick over there if you want to actually compete. You’re making a mistake by letting the momentum die. If the Microsoft CRM Live momentum were Catholic, it would be time for last rites.


Paul Greenberg
The 56 Group, LLC
Paul Greenberg, the president of the 56 Group, LLC, is the author of the best-selling CRM at the Speed of Light: Essential Customer Strategies for the 21st Century, 3rd edition. Greenberg is co-chairman of Rutgers University's CRM Research Center and executive vice president of the CRM Association. His blog PGreenblog won both of the only two awards ever given to CRM blogs.


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