I was speaking to Andy Hanselman today about the much talked about topic of Customer Relationship Management (CRM). He has the view that this is just not enough. What we should all be looking at is Maximising Customer Relationships (or MCR). Branding has become such a wide subject now that it is far, far more than just doing logos, it’s about every single aspect of your customer interaction.
A system that maximises customer relationships seems to be a far more sensible and holistic way of dealing with your customers.
If you look at your existing customers, are you genuinely delivering them all of the available products or services you offer? Or more likely, are they using you for one or two of the things you can do for them and buying others from others?
In an article about agency survival by Alain Thys, he gives us some great pointers about what we should be doing. Perhaps the most important of these is making ourselves accountable for the work we produce and delivering a sensible ROI for our clients. He argues that many of the reward models for agencies are just wrong, because they reward overspending and not results.
At the Marketing Live conference in Leeds a few weeks ago, one of the main topics discussed was again, about agency rewards. I was the only person who held my hand up saying we had been doing this for years. As an agency, Purple Circle has always put its money where its mouth is and for the right projects will either take an investment in the company, or find a reward system that is based on results.
Duncan Bird, a long time friend of ours is at Anomaly in New York and they have built their entire business model on this idea. They not only create brilliant work, they invest in the business and take a shareholding. They are truly rewarded for their work and this is the future for an agency.