Customer relationship marketing was supposed to be a “new paradigm,” yielding more loyal customers and much more profit for companies. It hasn’t. What should managers do?
It seems that for most companies, no matter how much they invest in customer relationship management, neither the quality of their customer relationships nor the profitability of their business has increased commensurately. Of course, it was not supposed to turn out this way; relationship marketing was a “new paradigm” that would herald a golden age of marketing–more loyal and satisfied customers, and much more profit for companies. The authors’ evidence indicates that it is neither the quality of the CRM solutions nor their implementation that is to blame. Simply, companies have failed to prepare the ground adequately in advance of major CRM investments. Without development of the right capabilities, new technology fails to improve marketing practice. As a consequence, customer relationships are neither better nor more profitable. The authors’ research reveals how operational managers can develop relationship marketing capabilities commensurate with the implementation of CRM to help make better investment decisions and exploit the opportunities profitably.