How can strategies used for CRM be described?

This section will describe the different theories concerning the strategy of CRM that will be used. In order to make these strategies more easily overlooked, the view of Chen & Popovich (2003) on how a CRM process is comprised will be used to divide the theories into categories.

Customer Touch Points

Touch points are the interactions points the customer has with the organization Chen & Popovich (2003). The Interact stage of the IDIC (Identify, Differentiate, Interact, Customize) model will be used as an overview of the customer exchange since it provides a broad clear view of these touch points.

How can strategies used for CRM be described?

Davids theory regarding “touch points” is the most inclusive of the theories reviewed and is therefore used to outline how customers come in contact with the firm.

Peelen (2005) further provides a list of possible interaction points which match well with both the views of Peppers & Rogers as well as Davids, this list will be used to further dive into how customers exchange information with organizations.

  • IDIC (Peppers & Rogers. 2001)
    • Interact
  • Customer Touch Points (Davids 1999)
    • Television, Radio (Peelen 2005)
    • Website
    • E-mail
    • Telephone
    • Personal Sales & Service Employees

Front Office

 The Front office is a collective term for all firm functions that deal directly with customers (Chen & Popovich. 2003).

This section will present the theories relating specifically to the customer interaction. The Identify stage of the IDIC (Identify, Differentiate, Interact, Customize) model is used it provides a good description of the core requirements for the use of CRM in the front office. The CMAT model is then used to view the different stages a customer‟s goes through. This particular model is used as it has very comprehensive and detailed explanations of the different stages.

ThuyUyen & Nguyen express the need for digitizing the knowledge of the employees, something which other reviewed literature only hint at, they are used because they explicitly express this.

Finally Greenberg states that culture is of high importance with the implementation of a new CRM strategy, he is used as he is the most comprehensive source on the subject.

  • IDIC (Peppers & Rogers. 2001)
  • Identify Stage
    • Customer Management Life Cycle (Curry & Kkolou. 2004)
  • Further described by (QCi 2009)
    • Digitizing Knowledge (ThuyUyen & Nguyen 2007)
    • Culture (Greenberg 2004)

Back Office

 The back office contains all the functions not directly visible to the customer (Chen & Popovich. 2003).

As expressed by many authors there is a high need in the CRM process to find the value of each individual customer. The theories from Zikmund are used as they are the most detailed of the reviewed theories regarding customer value. Furthermore Xu & Walton present a unique view of customer classification using the profit cost matrix, similar theories have not been found in other literature, and it is therefore included.

The Differentiate and Customize Stages of IDIC (Identify Differentiate Interact Customize) model are also included as they provide good overview explanations on the subject of differentiating the customers and customizing the product to them.

To augment the broad customization overview of the IDIC model Mintzberg & Lampel and Zineldin are used to describe the customization as they offer detailed descriptions on the subject.

The analytical model of Xu & Walton on the areas that data needs to be attained in is the only found theories on this subject, it is therefore included as it provides unique insight into what organizations should think about when deciding what information to look for. Furthermore, Zineldin provides a better explanation of what can be done with the customer knowledge than the other reviewed authors.

He is therefore used in conjunction with Xu & Walton to provide an idea of what information to attain and what to do with it once it is found.

  • Customer Value
    • Drivers of CLV (Zikmund. 2003)
    • Profit Cost Matrix (Xu & Walton. 2005)
  • IDIC (Peppers & Rogers. 2001)
    • Differentiate
    • Customize
      • Product Customization (Mintzberg & Lampel 2003)
      • Relationship Customization (Zineldin 2006)
    • Customer Knowledge Acquisition (Xu & Walton. 2005)
      • Using the knowledge (Zineldin 2006)

CRM System / Warehousing

 This section contains the theory more specifically related to the implementation of the system. Bose‟s model of how CRM systems should be implemented is very comprehensive, however, David‟s list summarizes the steps Bose states very well, and therefore David‟s list is used as it is simpler but still contains the same key areas.

Chase also detailed the planning of the system but did not go into as much detail as Bose. He does however explain levels of integration, which no other author brings up; therefore this section of his writings is included.

  • Ten Key Points (David 1999)
  • Levels of Integration (Chase 2004)

 How can performance of CRM be measured?

In this section the chosen theory related to measuring the performance of the CRM initiative is listed. The CRM scorecard developed by Hyung-Su & Young-Gul will be used as a primary measure of performance as it is by far the most comprehensive of the theories  found.

However, since Hughes directs critique directly at the scorecard method, claiming that it is not suitable for measuring soft values such as those of CRM, his theories on measurement methods will be used alongside the scorecard to provide extra insight. His views also help to give a wider aspect of the subject.

More specifically the CRM scorecard is included even though it has critique directed at it because it is the most complete method found, it tries to measure CRM on all levels of the organization which no other found theory does, and also because Hughes is the only found author to dislike it.

Frame of Reference

 These research questions were chosen in order to try to build a complete view of the CRM initiative from implementation to an on-going process.

In the first stage the objectives of the strategy is chosen, and the purpose of the initiative is stated. In the second stage, theories relating to strategy for the initiative and how systems  can be continuously used are described.

This is followed by a systematic way of measuring performance of the system, so it can be checked if it is reaching the said objectives.