MyCRM Weekly News Roundup

In our latest series of the MyCRM News roundup we have a number of interesting articles from the various news feeds and the world of CRM.
1.Microsoft launches its Social Listening tool
2.Big data, small world
3.NatWest using Microsoft Dynamics CRM
4.When a company really needs CRM
Microsoft launches its Social Listening tool
At Microsoft’s Dynamics Convergence conference the software giant announced Microsoft Social Listening, a new tool that is to be a free add-on for professionals already paying a licence fee.
Kirill Tatarinov, the executive vice president of Microsoft Business Solutions, went so far as to call the feature “revolutionary.” It will form a part of the Dynamics CRM platform within a few weeks.
This initiative arose as a direct result of Microsoft’s buyout of Netbreeze in Q4 of 2012. The monitoring and social analytics software platform used by Netbreeze has been utilised by Microsoft to create its Social Listening software.
Tatarinov told the media at the conference: “Netbreeze have done something revolutionary. It listens in to a broad range of [social] channels, and Microsoft can give them access to even more. They build listening technology that can generate sentiments by listening to innate languages, of which it supports 28." 
Microsoft obviously hopes that businesses will welcome this new software, as it is sophisticated enough to measure sentiment in social conversations. This will allow fast responses to changing situations.
Overall the tool will assist users to monitor events in real time relating to brands, products, and other elements relating to online business. This should lead to a better understanding of customers’ wants and opinions.
The big question is, does business really want this tool? It is clear that some major UK retailers are less than convinced that social analytics is worth the bother. To assess likely demand could be the reason Microsoft are initially offering use of the tool free of charge 
Big data, small world

Information, information, information.  It’s coming out of our ears and seems to be everywhere we look.  Big Data is like the Big Bang of information and can be just as dazzling, but is it just too big and unwieldy for the small to medium size businesses?
The plethora of data gathered from the internet can be overwhelming, but it can be put to good use whatever size marketing budget your company has.  Javier Aldrete, director of product management at sales software provider Zilliant, explains: “The benefits of the Big Data movement has more to do with driving action and value out of data by applying algorithms and predictive models to solve specific business problems.”
Even small businesses can tap into this data explosion by using certain types of business applications, CRM (Customer Relationship Management) being the prime example.
CRM is a system used by businesses to manage their relationships with current and prospective customers, usually with CRM software.  The software can provide a place to store and organise customer information.
As they have developed, CRM systems have gained the ability to track the health of accounts and sales pipelines.  CRM can benefit small businesses by helping them obtain sales and develop closer relationships with customers.  It gives businesses a “bird’s eye view” of which industries, company sizes and other types of targets are most profitable so they can focus their energies on the most efficient course of action.
The amount of information to be deduced from CRM systems is invaluable.  In this world of Big Data, even small businesses can benefit from streamlined information gathering.
NatWest using Microsoft Dynamics CRM
NatWest bank decided to replace its out of date CRM facility with a Microsoft Dynamics CRM system during 2013.
The bank’s old system was under some strain and was not providing the functionality required by the major high street bank. It became apparent to the bank that to keep up with the demands of customers, particularly business clients, change was badly needed. The bank considered other suppliers and systems but decided that the Microsoft option was best for the organisation.
NatWest is of course owned by Royal Bank of Scotland and the head of CRM for the business and commercial arm of RBS, David Russell stated that, “a consolidated view of all customer touch points” was required. The overall objective is to streamline processes to release employee time to maintain a fuller relationship with clients. He also stated: "We also sought powerful analytics capabilities that would allow us to further improve those customer relationships while driving cross-selling opportunities through value-added customer interactions." He went on: "CRM helps us to deliver a personalised service, which supports customers in achieving their ambitions."
One of the main concerns of the bank was that staff would be able to quickly adapt to a new CRM system; it had to be easy to use and quick to learn. The new system had to be seen as part of the solution the employees already had. 
Another feature that attracted the bank to the Microsoft Dynamics CRM system was the on-premise option offered. Not all systems are available with this feature that NatWest saw as being essential for its needs.
This move by a big-player like NatWest further highlights the importance and the need for an effective CRM system for all businesses that regard customer care as being of major importance to the success of the organisation. 

When a company really needs CRM

When a business first starts operating time and money can be short and all hands really do need to be on deck. In those early days, things often get done any way they can, but how long can that effectively last?
A Customer Relationship Management (CRM) application can really make a difference in managing critical customer information and streamlining everything.  
Here are a few signs that a company really needs to consider CRM.
•Multiple information sources. Having information in multiple systems and a general air of disorganisation can impact customer service and employee productivity. Everyone should have the same single view of customer history.
•Tedious reporting. Getting business data and pulling reports is never fun, but it shouldn’t be painful. With CRM, it becomes a lot easier to see sales forecasts, business data and performance reports.
•Data loss. If there isn’t a single source of information, then there is no question that data is being lost.  This can cost time and money. Make sure that data is kept safe and secure, no matter who is working.
•One-size-fits-all approach to customers. Not all customers are created equal. Targeted marketing and savvy sales approaches can drastically improve the bottom line. A good CRM platform can help to ensure this happens.
•Hardly any visibility. As the company grows, it can become more difficult to gain insight into customer interactions and outcomes. It is important to understand exactly how the team is performing.
A good CRM application really is necessary for any growing business. It helps to maintain critical customer information and provides a more detailed and insightful look at the business as a whole.


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About MyCRM 

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