Wednesday, February 14, 2007

New CRM from 37Signals

Someone has to create a CRM that actually helps manage business relationships in the way they work today rather than the way they worked yesterday. In general, CRMs are designed for an active sales force that needs to track outbound and inbound communications. While this is still important, it doesn't fully correspond to how leads are generated today. CRM's in general aren't designed to track the relationships between people. For example, with the majority of CRM's, tracking a series of referrals (Person A referred me to Person B who referred me to Person C) requires at best some custom programming. Why is this important? Because increasingly, at least in high value businesses, new business comes from referrals not from cold calling. And to be able to remember to a new contact how you reached them is critical. A few CRMs do this OK (GoldMine, Daylite) but others that I've tried (ACT, Salesforce, Netsuite) don't. I have high hopes for 37Signals new effort, which they announced a few days ago after a teaser announcement over a year ago. We'll see . . .
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