World News – US – On CRM: Salesforce Has Finally Solved Your CRM User Adoption Problem


We sell a very good onsite customer relationship management software called GoldMine which has great analytics – the software literally records the number of keystrokes a user makes each day Why is this important ?

When I get a complaint from a GoldMine customer that they are disappointed with the software, the first thing I do is look at all of their users’ keystrokes And what do I usually find? Often not a lot of typing activity! Which leads me to wonder how do you complain about a product when it’s not really being used?

It’s not just a GoldMine problem It’s a CRM problem Over the years that my company has implemented CRM systems, especially for our small and mid-sized clients, without a doubt the number one problem has been user adoption

This is because a CRM system is not an accounting system Or an order entry or inventory management system You don’t necessarily need to use the system for essential business processes such as sending invoices or paying invoices But a great CRM system offers many other advantages, which is why the management of countless customers has struggled to persuade their employees to make better use of their applicationsThey invest in training They hire special administrators They cajole, threaten and even advocate Some succeed But many never get the adoption they hoped for and many of them are disappointed with the ultimate return on investment of the system

So how do you solve this adoption problem? Salesforce has the answer: the company doesn’t secretly monitor its customers

“We work on a lot of data science,” Meredith Schmidt, executive vice president of Salesforce, told me in a recent podcast I did for the Paychex Business Series “Currently we have a adoption team We can go through the reports and say « hey, this client isn’t adopting, let’s try to help them » « 

Scary? Maybe But is it scarier than Facebook making content suggestions based on your tastes or Google showing ads from your previous searches? Of course not You don’t want to take full advantage of the benefits of your CRM application? Of course you do

My best CRM clients maybe use 30-40% of what the software does and unfortunately a sizable number of clients are just using it as a glorified rolodex These are the clients who end up throwing their hands in frustration, blame the software and ultimately blame me for recommending it But the more the vendor can get involved, identify issues and make suggestions for better use, the higher the chances of adoption and the happier the customer will be

It’s not that hard A cloud-based CRM provider has the data They can identify a customer where the business is below normal Salesforce, for example, has data from hundreds of thousands of customers and can exploit this information through artificial intelligence to make recommendations for better use of the system These recommendations, according to Schmidt (who assures me that privacy is maintained), can come as a suggestion through the software or through human communication through their adoption and customer service team.

Different from on-premise software like GoldMine, which monitors keystrokes after the fact, Salesforce uses its cloud platform to better immediately monitor user activity. « Product engagement is our goal because it is in real time « , says Schmidt » He looks at what you do and how you do things and tries to bring you more benefits If you do these things your return on investment should increase « 

Schmidt says her Salesforce team doesn’t know the customer’s name, but they can always help. « What I can do is start suggesting things, like, ‘hey, customers your size have also purchased this product « or » customers who wanted to increase their leads by 30% did all three things and you haven’t set it up yet, «  » she says

Rest assured, Salesforce isn’t the only CRM vendor doing this Other CRM vendors are also starting to recognize that monitoring user activity and making recommendations can fix the persistent problem and long-standing adoption of CRM Finally, vendors are leveraging AI to help customers use their products more and better It’ll make customers happier, which means paying customers And it’s already happening

I was a former senior executive at KPMG and since 1994 owner of Marks Group PC, an externally based 10 person customer relationship management consultancy

I was a former senior executive at KPMG and since 1994 owner of Marks Group PC, a 10-person customer relationship management consultancy based outside of Philadelphia I have written six books on running small businesses, including the latest « The Book of Manufacturer’s Lists » and « In God We Trust Everyone Pays In Cash: Simple Lessons From Smart Business People » Besides Forbes I wrote for The Washington Post and The New York Times and now I write regularly for The Guardian, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Inc, Magazine, Entrepreneur Magazine, and Fox Business I don’t make any compensation for how many people read this that I write

Salesforce, customer relationship management, cloud computing

World News – United States – On CRM: Salesforce Has Finally Solved Your CRM User Adoption Problem



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