Have you spent time recently trying to learn about CRM software online? Many clients have had frustrating, if not downright confusing, experiences trying to find the right CRM online. CRM is such a big and interesting world, but online information often annoys me. And that is because, generally, someone is trying to sell you something.

At this point, you might be wondering if I am a bit naïve! I know that good content is not generally created for fun. Of course, I hope everyone reading this will become part of my world and seek my (paid) expertise if they need it, but not so I can promote some specific software or service.

The problem is that when people write about software, particularly CRM software, almost no one writes from a truly independent perspective. The software providers are writing about what CRM can do for you, not so that you’ll buy someone else’s software but to promote their own. They will tell you what they can do… and skim past what others do better.

Similarly, most people in the services space make money from implementation. That means their advice will be influenced by the products they know and have the skills to work with. Good people will tell you if their product is not right for you – they don’t want the damage to their reputation from a failed implementation. In the end, though, they are also trying to sell you on the product that they work with, and if that is not right for you, the help ends there.

Who is out there saying, “The product you are looking at is great, but you will only use 10% of the capability, and you will still be paying for product and implementation knowledge for the 100%. Maybe we should look for another solution?”

I have clients who I wish had received that advice before they put many dollars and years of effort into a CRM that would never give them the return on investment they needed. We worked together to find a simpler, more affordable product that met their needs. The client never looked back, even though their initial product was one that they had happily used in their corporate career. The cost of the product wasn’t even what made the decision, it was the cost of the support team to run. This product was just way too much for a small business.

The review sites that compare software… seem to be a special sort of confusion engine, with little to no useful information and a bias for advertising. There is nothing better than an honest software review from someone using it. But those are few and far between.

There are pockets of great information, especially individual stories from the trenches. Whether they are horror stories or success stories, they help you to learn about what is out there. It is particularly great to hear about what is working for others in your industry, but even then, they may not meet your specific needs – your environment may not be like everyone else’s!

My goal over the coming months is to continue creating a body of independent knowledge and a guide for business leaders. Are there questions that you want answered? Is there something you are desperate to find out from an independent source? Please let me know, and I’ll add them to my list of upcoming topics.

In the meantime, how do you get the CRM you need rather than the one someone else wants you to buy? Are you concerned that your current CRM isn’t delivering this value? Please reach out and ask for my help – book a call with me now.