Not all customer communications management (CCM) software is created equal. In fact, there’s a fairly broad spectrum of solutions, ranging from lightweight Microsoft Word and SalesForce.com (SFDC) plugins to complex and powerful (and costly) multifunctional enterprise-grade platforms. But how can you tell if a solution that lies somewhere along that continuum has the features you need to get enterprise-grade CCM outcomes for your business without unneeded complexity and expense? Here are four essential features a CCM solution would need to have to be considered enterprise-grade:
In The Need for MarTech and Business Integration, SDL CMO Peggy Chen discusses the importance of proper integration of marketing technology and the business Impact of doing so. As the number of marketing technology (martech) solutions on the market is currently in the thousands and shows no signs of slowing, technology buying decisions continue to get more complex and confusing as time goes on. Chen recommends making integrability a primary qualifier for any new technology purchases moving forward. “Before investing in new technologies, marketers should ensure they integrate and work together effectively with existing tools. This is critical for maximizing technology’s potential for having a real impact on the business,” she says. Here's where we agree with Ms. Chen.
If you’ve shopped for customer communications management (CCM) solutions in the past, you know it’s a real challenge to figure out exactly how much each solution is going to cost you. That’s because CCM deployments are complex, no two implementations are exactly the same, and the situation is compounded by vendors’ widely varying preferred pricing models. Comparing apples to apples — and weighing value versus price — in this market is therefore a daunting task.
Elizabeth Barrette, Senior Solutions Architect with Dun & Bradstreet, recently wrote an article entitled Creating a Trusted View of a Customer. Barrette explains, “The value of a trusted view of a customer is fairly well known. The trusted view often underpins a 360-degree view of the customer fully exposing the business relationship across the enterprise. With the 360-degree view, the entire customer journey operates more efficiently and often more effectively. It is as close to nirvana as you can get in the business world.”
When looking at where we expected the CCM market to be in 2020, we concluded that, while CLIENT LETTER® is still a great on-premise CCM solution, it was going to take designing and building the new solution from the beginning to “meet the market.” We needed flexible cloud deployment options, high interoperability and sharing of data and content across the digital experience infrastructure, and the ability of line-of-business users to do their work without ongoing involvement of technicians and developers. So, we decided to create a 100% cloud-based CCM solution that would offer all the power of CLIENT LETTER while bringing an easy-to-use, business-user-friendly toolset.
Blake Morgan (@BlakeMichelleM), writing for Forbes, explains the need for scalable personalization capabilities in customer communications in “This Is Why Your Customer Experience Feels Impersonal and Mechanical.” She notes that, though it’s easier and more cost-effective to provide the same customer experience to everyone, customers today demand tailored, on-demand products and experiences. So brands have to take on the challenge of “mass personalization.”