CRM at the Speed of Light: CRM 2.0 Strategies, Tools and Techniques for Engaging your Customers (4th ed)

Paul Greenberg

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8 out of 10

This is one of those books with all the right credentials to make for a bona fide smash.

The title says it all, literally by spelling out the content, which, given the combination of author (i.e. Paul Greenberg, CRM Guru), hot buzzword topic (i.e. social CRM) and no less than a fourth edition provenance, leaves one in no doubt about the tremendous appetite for this topic.

The subtitle promises strategies, tools and techniques for engaging customers with social CRM. All round, a very compelling proposition.

This mouth-watering collection of thought leadership and real-life experience from Mr. Greenberg and several high-profile collaborators make this a must-read for any business person interested in understanding the real impact of social media, network effect and other emerging trends on their customers behaviours and interaction with the enterprise.

The book is divided into three parts that respectively address: the social revolution, customer collaboration and the evolution of CRM to meet these opportunities and challenges.

The last section is the crown jewel of this work in my opinion, not because of its length (over 350 pages), but because it delves under the cover of what social CRM should de doing to address the many challenges facing enterprises from their newly empowered social consumers.

This includes basic operational considerations in sales, marketing and customer service plus relevant strategy, process and implementation approaches, as well as how to leverage other hot topic / buzzword phenomena such as real-time predictive analytics, SOA and cloud.

Some minor irritations that let down this work, in my opinion, include the prevalence of research, statistics and predictions from around 2008 and 2009, which seem a bit dated for a recently published work in such a fast moving topic space area.

Also, the overall length of the book makes it tough to read from cover to cover without getting a little tired of the sometimes hip and ‘down-with-the-kids’ jocular style, undoubtedly aimed at breaking up what otherwise might be a somewhat difficult topic to grasp.

Despite the above niggles, I consider this to be a masterful work on a genuinely hot topic, which demands no less than complete mind shift from the established and traditional approaches to CRM, as previously covered by the author in three prior editions of this work. I give this an overall rating of 8 out of 10.

Further Information: McGraw-Hill

November 2011