What is xRM? What’s Not Plain to “C” about CRM

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is such a hot topic! But are you struggling to understand just how such a solution could provide value to your business since you don’t actually have ‘customers’? This is when you need to think about xRM.

You do have extremely valuable relationships to manage, but in your business environment they happen to be with donors, members, students, shareholders, investors, constituents, partners, associates or any number of other terms. They aren’t “customers” in the traditional sense.

Enter the acronym xRM.

The ‘x’ replaces the ‘C’ as a variable that can represent almost any relationship that is critical for business to maintain. It’s really a shift in thinking and a focus away from the C = customer relationship to x = any relationship. Consider the table below:

                      CRM                   xRM
Used by Marketing, Sales & Customer Service teams ‘Any’ team
To Manage Customer Relationships ‘Any’ Relationship
Automates Marketing, Sales & Service Business Processes ‘Any’ relevant business process
Tracks Interactions, activities, tasks Interactions, activities and tasks of ‘x’

So, considering the value of the relationships that are critical to the success of your business, you need to make sure information is current and complete. You need accurate contact information, you want to track every communication they have with your organization, you want to direct information to them that is meaningful and you want to monitor their level of interest and interaction with your firm.  After establishing these relationships, you want to do everything possible to maintain them.

So instead of getting hung up on the software being branded to manage “customers”, focus instead on the “R” and “M” – and you will quickly see the value that CRM software can provide your company!  Indeed, Microsoft Dynamics CRM is perfectly suited to handle any kind of relationship – not just those with your customers.  Some people ask what the difference between a CRM solution and a xRM solution is, and the truth is, there isn’t one.

For ideas on how you can put Dynamics CRM to work for you, read the white paper ‘24 Wildly Creative Ways Companies Use Microsoft Dynamics CRM’.

To learn more, contact Encore Business Solutions Inc.

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