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The customer service obstacle course
The customer service obstacle course

I don't know if it's the same for you, but have you ever noticed how some companies seem to go out of their way to place obstacles between their customers and great service?...

By Aki Kalliatakis 28 May 2015 13:12

Are you ready to handle crisis and complaints in the digital age?
Are you ready to handle crisis and complaints in the digital age?

The advent and rise of social media has created a vast community of citizen journalists and has provided the consumer with easily accessible platforms on which to voice concerns and complaints...

By Noëleen Bruton 27 May 2015 14:28

I'm not a communication strategist - I am a consumer advocate
I'm not a communication strategist - I am a consumer advocate

We, as communication strategists, often get drowned by our own jargon, statistics, consumer mapping and landscapes that we forget the very essence of being an effective communication strategist...

By Mogorosi Mashilo 21 May 2015 11:05

Aki Kalliatakis
The big new risk for business... being KFC'd on social media

Getting a 'roasting' from the eye-witness consumer is a growing risk for business now that social media can broadcast even the appearance of questionable behaviour. To be more specific, a brand can be 'KFC'd'...

By Aki Kalliatakis 15 May 2015 07:30

© Dingming Zhang – 123RF.com
[Orchids & Onions] Courage and humour rev the engine for consumers

One of the trickiest things for a brand to do is to change its offering radically and then market it. Ask Coca-Cola about the New Coke fiasco in the 1980s...

By Brendan Seery 5 May 2015 06:00

Rolf Akermann
Get the basics right

Two experiences in one week prompted me to write this article. Great TV campaigns, CRM programmes, social media etc. will not help if one does not get the basics right...

By Rolf Akermann 22 Apr 2015 14:18

Build fans, not audiences
Build fans, not audiences

Gone are the days of the passive audience that is willing to receive marketing messages at the whim of the advertiser. The new, more demanding, generation of consumers, has been exposed to so much advertising...

By Richard Firth 22 Apr 2015 13:08

IABC EMENA conference tackles leadership communication
IABC EMENA conference tackles leadership communication

LONDON: The IABC EMENA, the counterpart of the Africa region of the IABC, hosted their annual conference titled "Power to the People", addressing the key trends in communication...

By Daniel Munslow 15 Apr 2015 09:08

Danette Breitenbach
Forever is a long time

Years ago, a vehicle manufacturer ran a campaign where women could test drive their vehicle. I responded and booked a test drive - not a positive experience for me...

By Danette Breitenbach 9 Apr 2015 07:20

CRM can be really magical - when it works
CRM can be really magical - when it works

Best you do everything in your power to ensure you use your CRM system properly to ensure your customers have a positive experience and leave happy...

By Aki Kalliatakis 8 Apr 2015 13:41

Brands need to make a difference
Brands need to make a difference

A defined 'purpose' should be a brand's ultimate goal, brought about through communications and through the organisation's internal culture, product development and CSR initiatives...

By Deborah Usher 7 Apr 2015 14:24

The sum of the parts: Creating value with holistic segmentation
The sum of the parts: Creating value with holistic segmentation

Over the last few years, segmentation has been down-played in some industry circles...

By Riona Naidu 2 Apr 2015 08:22

Richard Firth
Harnessing workflow and mobility

The need for connectivity, anywhere and at any time, has driven the need for organisations of all sizes to look for ways to automate business processes and ensure seamless and measured communication...

By Richard Firth 30 Mar 2015 14:20

No communication = death to CRM
No communication = death to CRM

Let's face it, CRM is now a buzzword and the space has become cluttered and somewhat over-traded. For CRM to make it to the plateau of productivity, it needs to be properly integrated into customer communication...

By Scott Cundill 19 Mar 2015 14:00

Is your call centre doing justice to your brand?
Is your call centre doing justice to your brand?

As we move further into the world of e-commerce, e-education,e-administration and even e-society, first (and second and third) impressions are increasingly made not by your sales team...

By Jed Hewson 17 Mar 2015 14:24

Evolving from multi-channel to true omni-channel experiences
Evolving from multi-channel to true omni-channel experiences

The term omni-channel is on everyone's lips today - across all sectors - yet no brand in South Africa has managed to execute on a true omni-channel strategy...

By Lynette Hundermark 16 Mar 2015 15:04

Do once customer-driven companies need to lose their customer focus?
Do once customer-driven companies need to lose their customer focus?

Looking at all companies, at some stage in their history they were fantastic with customers - and then lost their way. We need to question whether the pressure to produce profit is so forceful...

By Aki Kalliatakis 11 Mar 2015 15:11

Danette Breitenbach
Coping under fire

Janine Lazarus, founder and owner of Janine Lazarus media consultancy was a journalist for 31 years, and has worked across the board from newspapers to radio...

By Danette Breitenbach 3 Mar 2015 11:42

Chris Moerdyk
Why customer service is so bad

One of the main reasons why customer service in South Africa is pretty much atrocious is because staff attend customer service training courses...

By Chris Moerdyk 3 Mar 2015 05:02

[TrendTalk] Content is key to 'winning' Twitter
[TrendTalk] Content is key to 'winning' Twitter

We know from a personal perspective that to get more followers on social media we have to be active daily, post cool stuff, be authentic and be engaged. But is it the same for brands?...

By Louise Marsland 20 Feb 2015 10:38

Why SA companies must start focusing on social media as a service channel
Why SA companies must start focusing on social media as a service channel

A growing number of consumers are turning to social media as their first point of contact when they have a question or complaint for a brand with which they do business...

By Gordon Geldenhuys 19 Feb 2015 16:00

Embracing customer service in the digital world
Embracing customer service in the digital world

Customer service. Two words that strike fear in many companies more than load shedding, hostile takeovers, and rising costs. Customer service requires time and resources to be effective...

By Jaco Pienaar 13 Feb 2015 14:37

Malcolm McDonald
Why most companies get KAM hopelessly wrong

Ask any director of any company what their biggest challenges are and the answer will always include something about how to deal profitably with big, powerful customers...

By Malcolm McDonald, Issued by Strategic Business Services 11 Feb 2015 10:13

Chris Moerdyk
Don't think out of the marketing box - just get rid of the whole damn box

Many South African marketing and media people are still in denial. To about the same extent as Thabo Mbeki and Co were over HIV/Aids...

By Chris Moerdyk 5 Feb 2015 09:10

Marion Scher
Pulling PR costings out of a hat

I was recently asked to quote for a media consultancy job by a Cape Town company...

By Marion Scher 3 Feb 2015 07:40

Context is king in the next wave of digital marketing
Context is king in the next wave of digital marketing

I recently attended a discussion with some colleagues and key clients, WPP STREAM Africa, around how to target digital marketing messages at an elite group of wealthy consumers...

By Richard Mullins 23 Jan 2015 11:03

Sid Peimer
Satisfied customers don't mean repeat business

We ask customers how satisfied they are, because we think that satisfaction means profitability and growth. That's not necessarily true...

By Sid Peimer 13 Jan 2015 14:22

Unlocking value from customer relationships in 2015
Unlocking value from customer relationships in 2015

I recently presented a paper titled "Thriving in the Digital Age: Elevated Experiences, Interactions and Analytics" at a conference that focused on how businesses can manage relationships with their customers in the digital era...

By Joseph Neusu 9 Jan 2015 06:42

Feed your customers festive this season
Feed your customers festive this season

The build-up to the festive season takes meticulous preparation - depending on how particular you are. It also causes untold stress and is always over far too soon...

By Catherine Milward-Bridges 4 Dec 2014 11:14

Tiffany Markman
Communication lessons from The Steve & Nancy Saga: A Sorbet Story

Let me first admit two things: 1.) I'm a groomer. Big time. I polish. I wax. I whiten and straighten and tweak; 2.) I do a fair chunk of this at Sorbet salons, making me what they call a 'guest'...

By Tiffany Markman 26 Nov 2014 12:58

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