Best Practices and Epic Fails in CRM

By Ken Kish, Managing Director, the Marketing Alliance

I had the pleasure of facilitating an Interactive Roundtable Discussion on "Best Practices and Epic Fails in Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Systems" at the recent TMSA Marketing & Sales Leadership Conference. The conversation centered around best practices in CRM - and how to avoid landmines. Here are highlights from the discussion:

  • Most CRM implementations fail due to lack of adoption by the sales team and executive teams. Epic CRM fails are not owned by one person within your organization. It is a joint failure, not a singular failure.
  • Any CRM implementation must have an engaged Executive Sponsor who is generally your top sales executive and is further supported by the CEO and CIO. 
  • Vet a number of CRM providers that fit the needs of your company and do your homework. You can start with a site like 
  • Once you choose a provider, best practices recommend you use a Value Added Re-Seller that can help you with the implementation, customizations and adoption. You don’t know what you don’t know.
  • Sales people need to understand the WIFM [“what’s in it for them”]. It is a CRM not a SPM (Sales Person Management) system. Such as reduction in administrative work; better sales communication between sales team and executive team; improved sales process and pipeline management; allows sales to focus on the best opportunities; and improved forecasting for sales goals.
  • Incorporate use of the CRM into your company policies to ensure adoption.

Note: The 2016 TMSA Sales & Marketing Metrics Study indicates that marketing and sales leaders within transportation and logistics companies continue to focus exhaustive attention and resources to CRM initiatives. Make sure to better understand this growing trend through the Executive Summary that is available at no cost to members (and $34.95 to non-members). Click here for more information.

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