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Results 41-60 of 177 for Louis Columbus
EXPERT ADVICE

Manufacturers Learn Valuable Lessons Selling Through Channels

For many manufacturers, indirect channels provide the majority of their revenue yet carry only a small percentage of their most profitable products. Instead, indirect channel partners opt to move literally tons of low-margin items, competing in the marketplace on price and availability alone. The electronic components industry is a case in point. When buyers have little opportunity to customize services or products, pricing and availability are all that matter...

OPINION

Managing Knowledge Globally: Lessons Learned on the Great Barrier Reef

Earlier this year I spent a couple weeks in Australia visiting subsidiaries. I was amazed to see how the seemingly smallest of processes Australian companies use to communicate internally have major implications globally. It's been tempting to create a maturity model that shows the wide gulf in organizations' maturity at transferring knowledge globally...

Where Companies Are Getting Search Engine Marketing Results

By definition Search Engine Marketing refers to both paid search and Search Engine Optimization (SEO). The former is based on a pay-per-click advertising model as companies bid on specific search terms or in the case of Google, AdWords, to get a more visible placement within search engine results. SEO refers to a series of Web site design processes by which companies tailor the content, keywords and messaging on a Web site to improve its rankings in search engines. SEO by nature requires a commitment on the part of companies to continually compete for top rankings in their chosen search areas. SEO is never a one-and-done proposition, but a continual re-fueling of sites with fresh content to keep its rankings up in search engines...

EXPERT ADVICE

How Marketing Is Getting Its Groove Back

In many companies, marketing is experiencing a resurgence and new relevance, a rejuvenation if you will towards aligning closer to customers than ever before. What's most encouraging about this is the fact that strategies based on dated cause-and-effect relationships with clients are -- through the use of blogs, more focused communication with customers through research, and Voice of the Customer (VoC) programs -- finding entirely new meaning in marketing departments throughout many companies, especially those in manufacturing...

OPINION

Service Oriented Architectures Get Sell-Side Religion

More and more of the companies that are either piloting or actively pursuing Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) frameworks to support their business strategies are aiming to accentuate, strengthen and streamline selling and service strategies. Cutting the costs surroundingdatabase and data warehouse consolidations, reducing integration costs by getting out of hand-built adapter hell, and getting pricing, configuration, quoting and service data to sales reps when they need it are also key goals of their strategies...

Does CRM Make Virtual Teams Work?

The recent run-up of gas prices has lead to many U.S. companies rethinking their stance on telecommuting, and in the more global context, the increasing acceptance of outsourcing is creating virtual teams at an unprecedented rate. Given the euphoria over Software-as-a-Service applications, the question of how effective they are at enabling virtual team performance is being raised more and more...

OPINION

Birth of a Salesman

When the sales team operates with urgency, the soul of a company is alive, thriving and growing. The sales department is the company's heartbeat and is absolutely necessary to create a sense of purpose and maintain a constant focus on delivering value to customers ...

OPINION

Recruiting Your Customers’ CEOs to Conferences

Customer events have replaced trade shows as the big-spend item in many software vendors' and analyst and advisory firms' marketing budgets. Implicit in this shift of spending is the precision possible for targeting CEOs and CIOs with relevant content ...

OPINION

In Australia, Pragmatism and Solutions Rule

Spending the last week traveling through Australia, visiting a manufacturer, giving presentations and talking with several other companies after my presentations has been fascinating. Before saying anything else, I have to compliment this nation and its people -- they are kind, humorous and have a ton of class ...

OPINION

Trekking AdWords’ Last Mile

Google AdWords is the most commonly used lead generation tool in many small and medium businesses. Layer in small and medium vendors ofCRM's many varieties of applications, and the dependency on precise targeting for lead generation becomes even more important, due to the highly targeted messaging each uses ...

OPINION

Strategies for Synchronizing Demand

The world's best manufacturing companies have found that through the integration of product development, sales and marketing, including channel forecasting, procurement and production, synchronization results that can strengthen sales, channel and marketing operations. Taking this a step further, it is possible to turn this synchronization into a significant financial and competitive advantage...

OPINION

Bringing the Value Back Into Value Propositions

They are everywhere -- value propositions that claim much and deliver little. The fact that so many value propositions these days are of the "boil the ocean" variety makes some thoughtful people wonder if their view of the world is overly simplistic or if they are missing something. Sure, a listing of all the features of a new software application presented as differentiators is educational. Yet it is often irrelevant to how companies actually buy software...

OPINION

Cookies Are for Closers

Now is the time for all good dads to come to the aid of their Girl Scout daughters and sell, sell, sell cookies. What is reminiscent of the sentence used by many typing teachers to teach that skill has become the battle cry throughout the suburbs of America. What has quickly replaced the length of one's SUV as a status symbol in suburbia is something so competitively pure and clear you can't help but admire it: boxes sold...

OPINION

Changing the Politics of Integration

The growing adoption of service-oriented architectures (SOAs) including SAP's NetWeaver platform and its related applications are having a significant impact on the politics of integration between manufacturers and distributors. The balance of power has already shifted in a few industries to the channel over the manufacturer, and nowhere is this more visible than in retail, with a case in point being Wal-Mart...

OPINION

Communication Hubs Are Redefining Relationships Globally

The fact that instant messaging, e-mail and chat are rising much faster as a combined approach to communicating supports the scenario of communication hubs redefining customer relationships in the next three to five years. Yahoo claims that 10 percent of all instant messaging sessions end with a telephone call. While small in total percentage, the growth rate is accelerating for this combined approach to communicating. There are many other research projects underway on this dynamic and its implications for changing how people and business relate to one another in the future...

OPINION

Honey I Shrunk the Market

While sitting through technically complex webinars and presentations this week, I felt like raising my hand and saying, "May I be excused? My brain is full." Seriously, the level of technology and adroitness of world-class demo jockeys is both impressive and intimidating. Compound this with bonding between engineers of different nationalities and platform allegiances, and you have the makings of a remix for "We Are the World" sung by programmers ignited by a common spark.

The Oracle Effect – Watch Out for CRM Sticker Shock

Pricing for licenses has stabilized -- except when an SaaS offering enters the mix, according to CRM industry expert Louis Columbus. "Prices and their erosion vary across each sector of the CRM market, yet the license pricing only takes a hit if a SaaS vendor is also in the deal," he told CRM Buyer. "Then, the licensing vendor has to drop way below their average."

OPINION

Future Satisfaction Comes From Today’s Customer References

I'm in the middle of doing a Web survey of SAP users to gauge their levels of satisfaction with theirenterprise resource planning vendor, and an interesting dynamic is starting to emerge ...

OPINION

Solution Selling With Integrity

The mantra of selling solutions has taken enterprise software by storm and nowhere is this more prevalent than CRM. Honestly, it seems like the more challenging and difficult it is to sell into specific sectors of CRM, the more "solution-selling" is being invoked. This newfound religion is truly transforming some companies away from being purely product-centric to being problem-centered on their customers' broken business processes first. The most positive aspect of solution selling's prevalence among the best-of-breed CRM community is that it is starting to make a difference...

OPINION

Users Speak Out About SAP NetWeaver

Starting around August of last year I started tracking down SAP users that were early adopters of the NetWeaver platform, and I found an interesting dynamic that led me to continue researching what was going on. What I found was that SAP was attracting entirely new customers based on the NetWeaver platform ...

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