The most important part is the 6 step plan -the author made at the end of the book- to increase profit. Everything came in the book were rapped up into this plan. Steps mentioned by the author are: “
- start tracking,
- analyze ratios,
- look at the process,
- talk to customers,
- start communication, and
- look at contact management software”.
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There is another key insight derived from the book in general -which he assured it implicitly and explicitly whenever it was possible- that “a software for customer relationship management (CRM) is not enough”, and humans only could implement this solution properly and effectively manage it to get best results; and without this human effort and follow up, the software will be useless. I. Conclusion Generally, the book could be great for small businesses or beginners in general. However, it is not on the same level when it comes to academic research, marketing professionals, and large corporations.
This doesn’t demean the book, it only assures that it is useful for small businesses or beginners because it really encourages and helps the reader to start implementing CRM to make a business value with its interesting writing style.
What the author left out or could have addressed more clearly?
There are some examples to what the author left out or could have addressed better such as:
- The sales part needed more elaboration if it is compared with the CRM part.
- Details mentioned in the CRM tools section are not enough to make the reader make a decision for what is the best for his business.
- Details concerning e-mail and websites are not professional or enough when it comes to the CRM concept, especially when he categorized e-mail message into three categories “the bright message, the text emails with colors –he meant the rich text format-, and the simple text (plain text)”.
Three key insights or learning you derived from the reading
This section aims at summarizing the key insights derived from the book –these insights were also mentioned in the body of the report - such as: 1. “CRM maintains or increases success it doesn’t create it”.
- The price of the product or service is not the main factor that customers take into their consideration when they make the purchasing decision.
- “Losing a customer to a competitor could be devastating”
- Customers are different from each others and a successful businessman should value each one of them in special appropriate way to achieve loyalty and to make a business value.
- Asking customers ‘dangerous question’ –such as what is missing or what he didn’t like- does “help to understand the market and their customers better”
- “Building confidence and trust from the customer at the very first interaction enhances the possibility of a sale by an enormous amount”
- A software for customer relationship management (CRM) is not enough to have a successful CRM.
Why do you recommend this book?
I do recommend this book for some reasons:
- The book inspires readers with the question and answer style that the writer created with the reader. And the idea of making the reader put himself in the customer position was perfect to inspire the reader and convince him/her with the importance of CRM,
- It shows the hidden value of customer relationship management which is ‘increasing sales and profits’,
- The book is interesting and it really does worth reading,
- The step-by-step plan will make it easy for any beginner to start implementing CRM.
- Gough, R. (2006). The Hidden Customer Value: How to increase your sales & profits.
- Alloy CRM, 2006. Retrieved November 3, 2008 from http://www. roygough. co. uk/Downloads/The%20Hidden%20Customer%20Value. pdf
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