It must be the holiday shopping season for CRM right now because it seems like everyone is lining up outside the local CRM shopping mall waiting to dash in and take advantage of the deals. I have been invited to present / demo Sage SalesLogix non-stop for the last few weeks and I’m scheduled out through the end of June. With this flurry of activity and interest – do I put my product on the first display case with bright, shiny descriptions of what my product can do? Maybe I could even include some graphics of super cool charts and graphs.
On the other hand, anyone can do that. Is marketing the way to sell CRM? Or is CRM much more to an organization than just the sex appeal of the user interface? Isn’t the key driver for a CRM implementation to solve a business issue? To provide value that outweighs the costs of purchasing and maintaining the software / hosting fees? I believe it is. This brings me to my point…
Too often I see sales people selling features and functionality and not focusing in on how the feature can solve the business needs of the customer. Too often I see prospects making buying decisions based on the look and feel of a demo and not based on how the functions being shown will really help them sell more or service their customer’s needs better.
So as a concerned advocate of CRM success everywhere, I challenge sales people to demonstrate value during their presentations. I challenge prospects to demand their sales people understand their business and their unique needs. And – prove to them that the solution they are presenting will in fact meet their needs now and in the future. Trust me – whether you are paying per user per month or you own your software, the investment you make needs to have a return or you will be shopping again next season for the next great thing.