The History of CRM
Customer relationship management is a concept that became very popular during the 1990s. It offered long term changes and benefits to businesses that chose to use it. The reason for this is because it allowed companies to interact with their customers on a whole new level. While CRM is excellent in the long term, those who are looking for short term results may not see much progress.
One of the reasons for this is because it was difficult to effectively track customers and their purchases. It is also important to realize that large companies were responsible for processing tremendous amounts of data. This data needed to be updated on a consistent basis.
In the last few years, a number of changes have been made to Customer relationship management that has allowed it to advance. These capabilities have allowed CRM to become the system that was once envisioned by those who created it. However, the biggest problem with these newer systems is the price. A number of personalized Internet tools have been introduced to the market, and this have driven down the cost of competition. While this may be a bane for vendors who are selling expensive systems, it is a bonanza for small companies that would otherwise not be able to afford CRM programs. The foundation for CRM was laid during the 1980s.
During this time, it was referred to as being database marketing. The term "database marketing" was used to refer to the procedure of creating customer focus groups that could be used to speak to some of the customers of the company. The clients who were extremely valued were pivotal in communicating with the firm, but the process became quite repetitive, and the information that was collected via surveys did not give the company a great of information. Even though the company could collect data through surveys, they did not have efficient methods of processing and analyzing the information. As time went on, companies begin to realize that all they really needed was basic information. They needed to know what their customer purchased, how much they spent, and what did with the products they purchased.
The 1990s saw the introduction of a number of advances in this system. It was during this time that term Customer relationship management was introduced. Unlike previous customer relationship systems, CRM was a dual system. Instead of merely gathering information for the purpose of using for their own benefit, companies started giving back to the customers they served. Many companies would begin giving their customers gifts in the form of discounts, perks, or even money. The companies believed that doing this would allow them to build a sense of loyalty in those who brought their products.
Customer relationship management is the system that is responsible for introducing things such as frequent flyer gifts and credit card points. Before CRM, this was rarely done. Customers would simply by from the company, and little was done to maintain their relationship. Before the introduction of CRM, many companies, especially those that were in the Fortune 500 category, didn’t feel the need to cater to the company. In the minds of the executives, they have tremendous resources and could replaces customers whenever it became necessary. While this may have worked prior to the 1980s, the introduction of the Information Age allowed people to make better decisions about which companies they would buy from, and global competition made it easier for them to switch if they were not happy with the service they were getting.
Today, CRM is being used to achieve the best of both worlds. Companies want to maintain strong relationships with their clients while simultaneously increasing their profits. The CRM systems of today could be called "true" CRM systems. They have become the systems that were originally envisioned by the pioneers of this paradigm. Software companies have continued to release advanced software programs that can be customized to suit the needs of companies that compete in a variety of different industries. Instead of being static, the information processed within modern CRM systems is dynamic. This is important, because we live in a world that is constantly changing, and an organization that wants to succeed must constantly be ready to adapt to these changes.