This article discusses performance drivers of CRM projects and is particularly relevant for managers seeking to optimize their companies CRM efforts. Despite the billions of dollars that have been spent on the implementation of customer relationship management (CRM) systems, many of the adopting companies are unhappy with the results. This can be due to two reasons: first, either the CRM projects are poorly implemented and thus do not perform accordingly, or, second, companies expect too much from CRM systems. This research examines how technological and organizational implementations as well as internal support affect the objectives of CRM with regard to initiating, maintaining, and retaining customer relationships. The results indicate that internal support is an important factor for the performance of CRM implementation. Further, it helps to have a clear focus for a CRM system to specifically address diverse functions such as the acquisition, maintenance, and retention of customers and to tailor implementation effort to the needs of the major functions
Marketing budget decisions are critical and should be fact based rather than intuitive. Profit can be improved by better allocating a fixed budget across products or regions. The Excel-based decision support model presented in this article makes it possible to determine near-optimal marketing budgets and represents an innovative and feasible solution to the dynamic marketing allocation budget problem for multi-product, multi-country firms. The model accounts for marketing dynamics and a product’s growth potential as well as for trade-offs with respect to marketing effectiveness and profit contribution. It was successfully implemented at Bayer, one of the world’s largest firms in the pharmaceuticals and chemicals business. The profit improvement potential in this company was more than 50 % and worth nearly EUR 500 million in incremental discounted cash flows.