Use The CRM


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Who should use, the cloud computing platform for In a word, anyone who wants to push their CRM capabilities farther, faster.

Don’t fear custom development, especially for cloud CRM. In fact, custom development is crucial, especially at times of seismic technology change: the dawn of client/server computing (freeing us from mainframes), the birth of the Internet (freeing us from local area networks), and with cloud computing (freeing us from software installation or maintenance).

Packaged applications today — such as, in conjunction with AppExchange — are doing a great job of keeping up with the advancing state of the art. But there’s still room for game-changing custom development that helps businesses gain a competitive advantage.

On that note, here are four great ways for customers to use the platform to enhance their CRM business results:

1) Interact With Customers/Partners In News Ways

How do you support a completely new business model? That question faced Innoveer client EveryScape, which creates visual guides for local search, providing photo-realistic experiences of everything from cities and streets to the insides of hotels and restaurants. But since EveryScape’s customers are located around the world, the company needs local photographers who can capture images for each location.

Accordingly, Innoveer helped EveryScape build a application that automates numerous business processes, from signing new clients to dispatching automatic job requests to local photographers. If the photographer accepts the assignment, the system then handles dispatch and directions, marshaling the entire workflow, through to creating a live virtual world for each client.

Could EveryScape have easily and efficiently built this type of approach, without cloud CRM? No way, because there’s too much interaction between EveryScape, photographers, and clients. Furthermore, the application is so specific to the company’s business model that no suitable off-the-shelf product existed. But thanks to, the company can cost-effectively, and quickly, support its unique business model.

2) Convert More Leads To Sales

How do you enhance to support your own company’s unique approach to handling leads? That was the question facing one Innoveer client, a high-technology manufacturer with more than $1 billion in annual revenues. The company was already using, quite successfully, to support its sales and marketing processes. But the company was also throwing away a lot of good — but not good enough — leads.

Accordingly, marketing managers wanted a better way to nurture leads. In particular, after scoring each lead based on quality, they wanted to hold not-good-enough leads back in a dedicated lead-nurturing pool, and then massage the leads until they were good enough to give to salespeople. Basically, it’s purgatory for leads, with a chance at redemption.

AppExchange, however, didn’t offer a suitable lead nurturing functionality. Accordingly, Innoveer helped the high-technology firm build its own, using As a result, the company now converts many more leads into sales.

3) Tie CRM Into Social Networks

Cloud CRM today includes links to numerous social networks, including Facebook and Twitter. But some businesses choose to push the envelope farther, faster. In the wake of the Icelandic volcano explosion, for example, KLM decided that it wanted to more fully support its customers, using social media.

Accordingly, the airline used the Heroku (Ruby on Rails) development environment to tie its Service Cloud directly into Facebook. The latest version of this application, Service Cloud 3, now includes many of these capabilities, built in. But KLM has been ahead of the curve, with its understanding and successful application of cloud CRM to not only turn prospects into customers, but to support them via social networks.

4) Eliminate Redundancy can also free businesses from the tyranny of redundant business applications. Executives at one company I recently met with, for example, want to add an HR application on top of Their thinking: already stores essential information about almost every employee. Instead of adding another standalone application to support HR, which would duplicate a lot of that information, why not just build the HR application in

This is yet another example of how you can take software that’s already supporting crucial business processes, and extend it. Furthermore, this strategy works not just for adding HR, but also benefits management, expense management, or any other critical business process.

Embrace Cloud CRM Custom Development

The takeaway: When it comes to cloud CRM, if your vendor or application store — AppExchange, Apple AppStore, or otherwise — doesn’t offer the functionality you need, just build it. Because when it comes to enhancing cloud CRM, the options are endless.

Learn More

While it’s fun to talk technology, the true measure of a successful CRM program is one that delivers targeted business results. To ensure that your CRM program addresses big-picture concerns, review our “top 10 questions” for marketing, sales and service, to see how your CRM program compares to best practices and our benchmarks.

Post and thumbnail photos courtesy of Flickr user phe?nix.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Adam Honig
Adam is the Co-Founder and CEO of Spiro Technologies. He is a recognized thought-leader in sales process and effectiveness, and has previously co-founded three successful technology companies: Innoveer Solutions, C-Bridge, and Open Environment. He is best known for speaking at various conferences including Dreamforce, for pioneering the 'No Jerks' hiring model, and for flying his drone while traveling the world.


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