Support is the new pre-sales

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[br][br]Good article from David Taber in CIO. These are excerpts. You can read the whole thing here.

  • More than 25 years ago, customer support and service organizations pioneered CRM. Today almost all companies adopt some level of automation in service and support functions.
  • Simple systems capture the basic information of companies, contacts, and cases, and help manage the flow of customer requests across the organization. This is cool; you'll be able to lower costs and improve metrics for customer response time. If you view customer support and service as a simple cost center, that may be enough for you. In that case, it may be hard to justify more.
  • However, in those simple CRM systems, you can improve only costs, not business outcomes.
  • Think about it: Your customer support people may be on the phone with a customer more often than your sales reps. If you can move a frustrated customer into an enthusiastic supporter you get two effects—a powerful marketing asset and one of those aforementioned repeat customers that drive up profitability.
  • To make that happen, your service and support system must be thoroughly integrated with the sales side of the house. It also needs to project itself into your user community via customer and service partner portals, links to your online forums and social media outlets.
  • Of course, the system needs to be integrated with your phone system and chat mechanisms to capture the data and metadata of every customer conversation.

About David

The suits have taken over (or have they?) For Customer Experience, "Just OK" Is Not OK

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