CRI Framework Library

 

triangle1 We collaborate with your in-house team to map and track the customer experience.

triangle1 Together, we tap B2B relationship power and create a process that captures

      all relevant relationship interactions.

triangle1 We help you predict and develop long lasting, mutually-rewarding customer relationships.

 

What’s Happening:

Are your B2B relationships getting stronger or weaker?

Get ready for a game changer: A real-time Customer Relationship Value Score!     For more

 

2017

BMANorcal Presentation January 12, 2017: Customer Relationship Intelligence (CRI)

In the global economy of the 21st century, products have become commodities. Global companies can match the features and prices of almost any product in any industry. What then can companies do to differentiate their offering and add customer value? Linda Sharp, CEO of Religence recommends focusing on and quantifying the customer relationship, based on what people DO. It’s as simple and as hard as that.

Come join us to learn about how to quantify relationships and map value creation to:

  • Take the next operational step beyond customer journey maps and CES (Customer Effort Score), which qualify relationships based on what people SAY
  • Quantify how easy or how hard it is for a customer to deal with the company and what impact, positively or negatively, this has on customer value
  • Calculate costs to the customer in extra time and effort…and costs to the company
  • Balance the value provided to the customer for the price paid, and the revenue value received versus the variable costs expended by the company
  • Identify how to improve profit while at the same time improving on what customers value

Watch for blog post in early January 2017 with details on the Silicon Valley event. If you miss this opportunity, invite us in for a workshop. See CX Performance Management. The workshop series.

 

And What Happened.

2016

GAN Events for Customer REI (Relationship, Engagement, Insights) and Predictive Analytics and Big Data in March, two Customer Analytics and Insights Workshops by Religence CEO Linda Sharp. Part 1 Customer Relationship Intelligence: NEW methods to quantity and strengthen customer relationships and Part 2 Value Creation Mapping: Measure what the customer experiences for mutual success.

 Marketing Operations Partners and their Marketing Future Forum invited Religence CEO Linda Sharp to do a podcast in June. To listen: www.blogtalkradio.com/marketing-future/2016/06/03/how-are-you-driving-positive-and-profitable-customer-relationships

Welcome to Enterprise Marketing – The Future which focuses on how the future of marketing is about performing real-time—being an agile organization to make the most of evolving opportunities to impact customers & profit.

I’m your host Helene Eichler. Join us to stay up on trends and best practices from marketing thought leaders that fuel organizations’ current and future marketing effectiveness.

We’re excited to have Linda Sharp, Customer Relationship Intelligence thought leader and CEO of Religence to discuss why you need more than traditional customer loyalty metrics to track customer success.

How well do you understand the process your customers go through when making a buying decision? Aligning with why and what drives this often non-linear journey is essential to providing a positive customer experience. So how do you map your customers’ interactions with your brand to provide customer value and yield profitable customers?

  • What do you see as the critical considerations when creating a process mapping customer success?
  • What have you found doesn’t work with the traditional ways we measuring customer value?
  • Given that relationships are the secret sauce to customer success, what are some more actionable and operational methods you recommend?
  • What are 3-4 takeaways for us to keep in mind going forward?

Relevant Religence Posts:

Improve on traditional methods for measuring value

Why we need Relationship Value, the missing metric…

Customer Success at all costs? We say, “No!”

Contribution Margin for Marketers

Profitability Focus Checklist

Named Religence Advisor Eric Hansen. Learn about this forward thinking Silicon Valley executive on the Why Religence? page.


2015

Celebrate the launch of our new Why Fly Blind? blog with us. Subscribe!

Announcing out new CX Performance Management Workshop Series! The Relationship Age demands collaboration, along with cross-functional processes and analytics. Get jump-started! Bring a problem. Take away a solution. Learn more…

2014

Named Religence Advisors Mike Connor, Steven Cox, Jim Donovan, Doug Hoppe, Ian Jacobsen, and Scott Lawley, Learn about these forward thinking Silicon Valley executives on the Why Religence? page.


Women’s Radio Network’s Lisa Singer interviewed Religence CEO Linda Sharp. Take a listen @ www.wrnw1.com/archived-shows/linda-sharp-lisa-singer-july-16th-2014/. The goal of the network is to empower women and highlight women entrepreneurs. Linda encouraged all people and especially women to go for something BIG when they reached fifty. She explained that this is what she did and as a result invented Customer Relationship Intelligence. This suggestion must have resonated. Her ratings were twice what the network normally sees and close to a million people listened in. Some 87% of them stayed for the whole interview. Again twice what the network normally sees.


MIX HACK: Vision for a Sustainable Customer-Focused Enterprise posted by Religence CEO Linda Sharp and Religence Director Raymond Sheen

SUMMARY: Differentiate on relationships. Products and services are commodities.

A sustainable customer-focused enterprise has to do more than meet or exceed customer expectations with its products and services. It must also develop and maintain strong relationships with profitable customers. Relationships are unique. Products and services are just commodities—until combined with profitable relationships. Profitable customers behave differently. They want a relationship. They buy value.

Managing the relationship–with the same rigor and energy with which you manage the product and service– transforms your company into a sustainable customer-focused enterprise.

What has been missing has been the ability to proactively manage that relationship. As Peter Drucker famously said, “You cannot manage what you cannot measure.” To manage relationships, you must measure relationship development. A key relationship development metric has been missing until now. We call it Relationship Value.

When the relationship is actively measured and managed, your organization can unleash the potential of all your stakeholders, customers included.

2013

Marketing and Social Marketing SIG of the SV Forum Presentation: The MONEY is in Retention. Start There. Harvest the GOLD in the BIG Data Blizzard. Relationships drive business. Yet, no one knows who does what to whom, when, for what result in marketing, sales, and customer service. Customer retention is even more of a mystery–no one is directly in charge. But, that is where the MONEY is! To thrive in the Relationship Age start with Retention. (OPPORTUNITY for Sales and Marketing to establish a new Retention function.)

For established companies some 80% of revenue comes from repeat business and referrals. Typically, only 20% comes from new customers. And typically, 80% of revenue and 100% of profit come from 20% of customers. The relationships with those priority customers was hard to know even before the BIG Data Blizzard hit. A blizzard certainly, but one carrying with it digital relationship GOLD.

Harvest the GOLD, not by being faster at looking backwards, or more complete in looking at trends by including Social Media. Nor using even fancier tools to read the tea leaves. None of that matters unless you’re focusing on the right customers. None of that matters if the right relationship metric is missing. The right metric, Relationship Value, is the game changer. With Relationship Value you can compete on relationships. The metric is a leading indicator for profit and satisfaction. (OPPORTUNITY for Sales and Marketing to harvest the relationship GOLD. Relationship Value makes the data come alive!)

Religence CEO Linda Sharp will show you how to focus on the most profitable customers, and how to use the breakthrough metric, Relationship Value, to thrive in the Relationship Age.

Linda’s will bring a few copies of her book Customer Relationship Intelligence: A Breakthrough Way to Measure and Manage Sales and Marketing to give away in the session. Or you can get a FREE electronic copy if you check out her teams’ entries in the McKinsey-HBR Management Innovation Challenge. Their HACKs have been consistently ranked in the top 1% of over 960 innovative ideas globally. You’ll see why major Enterprise companies are paying attention.


Marketing Camp San Francisco Session on Marketing and Innovation: Submit/Vote Innovation Ideation: BIG Data Dilemma. What’s NEXT? An Innovation Community Initiative. Breakthrough innovation—an accident, an act of desperation, an afterthought? NO. Breakthrough innovation can result from a deliberate, strategic innovation community process. A leadership OPPORTUNITY for Marketing! To make the data come alive!

Peter Drucker on Marketing and Innovation: “Because the purpose of business is to create a c ustomer, the business enterprise has two—and only these two—basic functions: marketing and innovation. Marketing and innovation produce results; all the rest are costs.” YES!

Enterprises are really good at incremental change. Not so much for breakthrough innovation. Now with the new Enterprise Feedback Management tools—Social Media Monitoring tools, Voice of the Customer, and Community Ideation Collaboration– Enterprises can be even better at incremental change and involve more people. A critical problem with the new tools is that the Enterprises are overwhelmed with the ideas flowing to them. So much so that good ideas are overlooked. And the narrow way these tools are generally used is not adequate for breakthrough innovation—it wastes their potential value. Even more of a problem is that three more great opportunities are also wasted—for relationship development, repeatable process, and continuous improvement, and the ability to correlate engagement to business results—revenue, profit, referrals, adoption, up-sells. A dilemma!

Make that an OPPORTUNITY! Religence CEO Linda Sharp, whose passion is community building and whose track record in community engagement is 3X the accepted norm, is well suited to lead a discussion about how you handle the dilemma and to introduce you to a breakthrough new approach.

Linda Sharp is CEO of Religence, a customer-focused performance management consulting firm specializing in the Religence Framework for CRI (Customer Relationship Intelligence). Linda is the inventor of a breakthrough Relationship Age metric, Relationship Value, which applies to Communities as well as the Enterprise. Linda was well ahead of the movement to customer-centric thinking, having pioneered the use of Voice of the Customer research for strategic positioning to help build a billion dollar technology business from scratch, double an environmental engineering firms’ business, and grow an insurance company by 80% after years of shrinking market share.

Successes like these made her audacious and bold enough to try to quantify marketing, putting her propensity for math to work. Her goal was to get marketing—in the broadest sense of the word—some respect to take its rightful place at the management table. Community Leaders have a similar problem and opportunity. She understood early on that a company’s best potential customers were most likely its current customers. Leveraging these customer relationships in an Enterprise’s Stakeholder Community is What’s NEXT. Another leadership OPPORTUNITY, absolutely!


Community Leadership Summit Session: Submit/Vote Innovation Ideation: BIG Data Dilemma. What’s NEXT? An Innovation Community Initiative. Breakthrough innovation—an accident, an act of desperation, an afterthought? NO. Breakthrough innovation can result from a deliberate, strategic innovation community process.

Enterprises are really good at incremental change. Not so much for breakthrough innovation. Now with the new Enterprise Feedback Management tools—Social Media Monitoring tools, Voice of the Customer, and Community Ideation Collaboration– Enterprises can be even better at incremental change and involve more people. A critical problem with the new tools is that the Enterprises are overwhelmed with the ideas flowing to them. So much so that good ideas are overlooked. And the narrow way these tools are generally used is not adequate for breakthrough innovation—it wastes their potential value. Even more of a problem is that three more great opportunities are also wasted—for relationship development, repeatable process, and continuous improvement, and the ability to correlate engagement to business results—revenue, profit, referrals, adoption, up-sells. A dilemma!

Make that an OPPORTUNITY! Religence CEO Linda Sharp, whose passion is community building and whose track record in community engagement is 3X the accepted norm, is well suited to lead a discussion about how you handle the dilemma and to introduce you to a breakthrough new approach.


MIX HACK: Measure Innovation Community with CRI to Tie to Business Results posted by Religence CEO Linda Sharp and Religence Director Raymond Sheen.

SUMMARY: Breakthrough innovation—an accident, an act of desperation, an afterthought? NO.

Breakthrough innovation can result from a deliberate, strategic innovation community process.

But it will take COURAGE: courage to create an entrepreneurial culture to support it, courage to take risks, courage to place big enough bets to succeed.


MIX HACK: Measure Performance Innovation with CRI for Repeatable Success posted by Religence CEO Linda Sharp and Religence Directors Dave Pearson, Raymond Sheen, and Richard Morgan.

SUMMARY: Relationships are THE most underutilized competitive advantage there is. Innovation needs to start there with the relationship development process—to compete on relationships. All companies face the huge challenge of superior revenue growth. Yet many firms ignore the key factor in improving revenue and bottom line results–their relationships.

As the Information Age morphs into the Relationship Age, the most important thing Frontline Staff can do is develop deep relationships with customers. The most important thing their Managers can do is measure the relationship development process for repeatable success.


MIX HACK: Innovating Innovation Requires a Three-Pronged Strategy posted by Religence Director Raymond Sheen.

SUMMARY: There are at least three very different types of innovation. A monolithic “one size fits all” approach to innovation will miss the mark and ignore key innovation approaches.   Instead a coordinated and integrated set of strategies are needed at the levels of product, business, government and market structures.

2012

Marketing Camp Silicon Valley Session: Measure What Matters in the Relationship Age. Compete on Relationships. The Information Age is rapidly morphing into the Relationship Age, while business processes are still stuck in Industrial Age silos. Meanwhile, executives are clamoring to make sense of the chaotic crush of interaction data coming off the Internet, smart mobile devices, Social Media, and Communities–and tie it to business results. A dilemma!

Make that an opportunity! Religence CEO Linda Sharp, the inventor of a breakthrough Relationship Age metric, Relationship Value, looks at that data and sees pure gold–relationship gold. Here’s why:

Relationships drive business. Always have. Always will. Developing a relationship with the buyer is what Marketing, Sales, Customer Service, and Communities have in common. Measuring the development of that relationship across silos is what matters in the Relationship Age. Relationship Value not only makes sense of the data, but is a leading indicator for profit and satisfaction. Now that is pure gold! And a remarkable opportunity for Marketing to lead executives to that gold. Come talk about how.


MIX HACK: Measure Value Creation with CRI for Long-Term Success posted by Religence CEO Linda Sharp and Religence Director Raymond Sheen

SUMMARY: Capitalism is FREEDOM. Customers are FREE to choose whatever goods or services they desire and can af ford.  Companies are FREE to develop and sell whatever goods or services for which they believe there is a market. This relationship between the customer and company is the foundation of Capitalism.

But as the Information Age morphs into the Relationship Age and the balance of power shifts to the customer, the foundation is being challenged. Meanwhile, value creation business processes are still stuck in the Industrial Age!

The change in how a customer relationship is developed and managed will transform Capitalism. The challenges are also opportunities to

  • Make sense of the data—measure what matters for business results.
  • Get closer to customers—personalize and deepen the relationship.
  • Transform the Enterprise–embrace Social Business and its new form of power.

It is time to build a new CRI (Customer Relationship Intelligence) Infrastructure to thrive in the Relationship Age and transform Capitalism.


MIX HACK: Measure Strategy Execution with CRI to Compete on Relationships posted by Religence CEO Linda Sharp and Religence Director Dave Pearson.

SUMMARY: The world is not flat. Competitive advantage thrives in customer relationships, despite the leveling effect of the Internet and technology. For long-term capitalism, strategy ought to be focused on the ultimate collaboration–relationship development.

In a technologically flat world, the last bastion of true competitive advantage may be as simple, and as difficult, as paying attention to customers, developing trust, and delivering what’s promised. Most important, the resulting customer relationship advantage is sustainable and unique.

To compete on relationships, measure relationship development with CRI (Customer Relationship Intelligence) and the revolutionary metric Relationship Value.

2011

Total Customer Management, Relationship Optimization Summit Presentation: Growing Relationships through Customer Intelligence. Use customer knowledge to develop a better understanding of the true needs of your customers and enhance relationships and retention. Religence CEO Linda Sharp will show a new approach to Customer Intelligence:

  • CRI Framework for Real-Time Operational CRI (Customer Relationship Intelligence).
  • Intelligence built into customer relationship process to measure relationship cause-and-effect.
  • Relationship Value: A leading indicator for profit and a KPI for relationship development.

Institute of Management Consultants Reno Confab Presentation: Value Client Relationships. Drive Profit. And Thrive. What clients would you want more of and why? What makes a client profitable? What’s their potential for profitable growth? What do clients value? Why do clients buy, stay, or leave? How do you listen? What do you do when things go right or wrong with clients? In this session, Religence CEO Linda Sharp will share her insights and invite you to share yours on how to answer questions like these for exceptional results. Her contention is your best potential clients are most likely among those you have already–if you pay attention to some client fundamentals. Her winning advice to value client relationships, drive profit and thrive: 1) Listen to clients you’d like more of, 2) segment by profitability, and 3) do what creates value for your clients—stop doing what doesn’t. In the interactive session, Linda will show you how to apply her winning advice for success.

She is a strategic alliance pioneer and thought leader as well as a sales and marketing and customer experience innovator and integrator. She founded the Strategic Partnering Special Interest Group in the Institute of Management Consultants (IMC) in 1995 and with her colleagues wrote a 200-page practical guide to ethical and responsible practices for people working together in successful strategic alliances. For leading this effort, she was honored with a Distinguished Service award.


Metrics User Group Presentation: Highlights from the MIX HACK Measure Management 2.0 with CRI for Real-Time Management/Operational Control/Profit by Religence CEO Linda Sharp.

Relationships drive business. Within the chaotic crush of interaction data coming off the Internet, smart mobile devices, Social Media, and Communities, is pure customer relationship gold. Three CRI (Customer Relationship Intelligence) metrics distill the goldRelationship Value, the “effect” in relationship cause-and-effect; Interactions, the “cause;” and Variable Interaction Cost.

The breakthrough metric Relationship Value is the brainchild of Religence CEO Linda Sharp. Religence is San Francisco customer-focused performance management consulting firm, specializing in CRI (Customer Relationship Intelligence).

During the presentation, she’ll give highlights from the MIX HACK and tips of how to get started to achieve real-time management, real-time operational control, and real-time profit. She promises to bring along a number of copies of her book, Customer Relationship Intelligence: A Breakthrough Way to Measure and Manage Sales and Marketing, to give away.


MIX HACK: Measure Management 2.0 with CRI for Real-Time Management/ Operational Control/ Profit: posted by Religence CEO Linda Sharp.

SUMMARY: Relationships drive business. Within the chaotic crush of interaction data coming off the Internet, smart mobile devices, Social Media, and Communities, is pure customer relationship gold. Three CRI (Customer Relationship Intelligence) metrics distill the goldRelationship Value, the “effect” in relationship cause-and-effect; Interactions, the “cause;” and Variable Interaction Cost.

2010

Developed a Community Approach to Social Media to extend the CRI Framework. Strategically, the approach extends the framework’s Strategy Decision Model with a Social Tactics Model to quantify social media for value in building communities and to perform a cost/benefit analysis. Operationally, it extends the framework’s process and analytics to communities and community initiatives to map and track the Customer/Community Experience in the enterprise’s stakeholder community.

2009

Purposeful Communities Session at the Online Community unConference by Forum One Networks. Convened by Religence CEO Linda Sharp and Social Entrepreneur Bill Jacobson of Social Alliance Network. The purpose of the session

  1. Share projects that bring spiritual, ecological, economic, and social vitality to community.
  2. Discuss how to invigorate existing communities with more purpose.
  3. Explore how a community’s purpose( s) and funding sources drive the methods and tools needed to make it work.

The tables they prepared can be a useful guide for establishing the strategic importance of communities and priority for funding.

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The second edition of Customer Relationship Intelligence: A Breakthrough Way to Measure and Manage Sales and Marketing by Religence CEO Linda Sharp was published in print and eBook formats. A FREE electronic copy is available at the end of the MIX HACK: Measure Management 2.0 with CRI for Real-Time Management/ Operational Control/ Profit.

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Awarded business process Patent No. US 7,526,434 for a Network-Based System and Method of Marketing Management. This method measures and manages marketing by measuring and managing the development of relationships between a company and its customers. That is, the method measures and manages what customers experience and how value is created.

2008

The Religence Team published a series of thought leadership papers to put what we’ve pioneered in context with what we view as the next steps and suggest how to get started valuing customer relationships to drive profit.

  1. Voice of the Customer Research by CEO Linda Sharp
        Customer Focus as Business Imperative
  2. Traditional Customer Research with VoC by CEO Linda Sharp
        More Actionable, Powerful, Relevant Research
  3. Technology Innovation by Religence Director Ray Sheen
        Engineer in Positive Customer Experiences
  4. Value Creation by Religence Director Ray Sheen and CEO Linda Sharp
        Map What the Customer Experiences
  5. Profitability Segmentation by CEO Linda Sharp with Executive Consultants Bob Sabath and George Fruehan
        Focus on High-Profit Growth Potential
  6. Strategy Execution by CEO Linda Sharp with Religence Director Dave Pearson
        Operationalize Strategy to Deliver Advantage
  7. Operational Control by CEO Linda Sharp
        Relevant Intelligence about Customer Relationships

To learn more about the body of knowledge we’ve built to help companies take the next steps—and the ones after that—on the path to profiting from a customer focus, Be In Touch.

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Developed Value Creation Map (VCM) methodology to map the Customer Experience in Critical Interaction Processes. VCM relies on Customer Relationship Intelligence (CRI) principles and builds on High-Level Value Stream Mapping used in planning. It integrates tools from finance, operations, and marketing. Value Creation Maps are dynamic, accommodating the myriad possibilities an Interaction Process Flow may take in the back and forth exchange between the customer and the company and the company’s people or within a Community of company stakeholders. VCM resulted from a collaboration between Religence Director Ray Sheen and Religence CEO Linda Sharp.

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Before we helped them refocus on their core, CSE Insurance had been experiencing years of shrinking market share and revenue losses. We helped them listen to their core customers and their most profitable agents. The effort was so successful that they grew by 80% in the Great Recession, more than recovering the losses of the previous five years.

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Book Review: Customer Relationship Intelligence in SDForum news, excerpted from review by Richard Taylor, Founder of the (now SV Forum) Business Intelligence Special Interest Group:

“There is a curious thing about the organization of a typical company. While there is one Vice President in charge of Finance and one Vice President in charge of Operations, there can be up to three Vice Presidents facing the customer: a Marketing Vice President, a Sales Vice President, and a Service Vice President. On the one hand, the multiplicity of Vice Presidents and their attendant organizations is a testament to the importance of the customer. On the other hand, multiple organizations mean that no one is in charge of the customer relationship and thus no one takes responsibility for it. ….

“Having a value for a customer relationship completely changes the perspective of that relationship. It gives marketing, sales, and service an incentive to work together to build the value in the relationship rather than working at cross purposes to build their own empires. …

“For data mining, we gather a large pile of data and then use advanced mathematical algorithms to determine which parts of the pile may contain some useful nuggets of information. This is like the hunter-gather stage of information management. When we advance into the data farming stage, we know why the customer relationship metric is important and understand how to collect that data directly.”

2007

Religence CEO Linda Sharp published her book Customer Relationship Intelligence: A Breakthrough Way to Measure and Manage Sales and Marketing. Customer Relationship Intelligence brings a fresh, new perspective to sales and marketing: new relationship metrics and a breakthrough, actionable framework for real-time management, tied to profit.

It is about teamwork and collaboration. It is about executing strategy. It is about retention, profit, and competitive advantage. Now companies can realize the gold in customer relationships and overcome risk and uncertainty in sales and marketing to:

  • Unlock the sustainable competitive advantage in customer relationships.
  • Align the organization in a cohesive framework to earn high-profit revenue.
  • Operationalize strategy to manage its execution in real time.

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Treat Customers Better, Make More Money—A Vision for a Customer Focused Company Presentation at the SDForum (now SV Forum) Marketing Special Interest Group by Religence CEO Linda Sharp and Religence Executive Consultant George Fruehan.

There is a fundamental disconnect between the customer experience that companies perceive they are offering and what customers experience as being delivered. Bain and Company found that 80% of executives thought they delivered a “superior customer experience” whereas only 8% of their customers thought they actually delivered it.

Being a customer focused company requires support and commitment from all areas of a company. In addition to active participation from sales, marketing, and customer service, it is essential to involve executives, finance, and operations personnel. Sharp recommended getting started by segmenting customers by profitability, conducting primary customer research, and becoming proactive about retention.

When seen as a process and measured and managed as described in her upcoming book, Customer Relationship Intelligence: A Breakthrough Way to Measure and Manage Sales and Marketing, the end result is achieving a competitive advantage from your customer relationships, dramatically increasing high-profit revenues, and establishing the means to repeat and improve upon your success.

(Excerpted from an event review by Mark Duncan published in the SDForum news.)

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Methods our team has pioneered over the last couple of decades are now recognized as critically important today in bringing a customer focus to marketing, operations, and finance. A key method is segmenting customers for profitability and developing business rules for profitable, differentiated service delivery with our profit matrix.

Religence Executive Consultant Bob Sabath published two articles on his pioneering efforts in profitability segmentation:

“Who—and What—is Profitable?,” Supply Chain Management Review, July/August 2007, Bob Sabath with Patricia J. Daugherty, Daniel D. Mattioda, and Haozhe Chen

Profit contribution information has significant strategic value for companies. In spite of this, many companies don’t track profitability by customers or by products. Our research makes a strong case for why they should begin doing so. Having good profit information can help companies make better decisions on products and customers, spot small problems before they turn into bigger ones, and at the end of the day create closer supply chain relationships.

“Integrating Marketing and Supply Chain Management to Improve Profitability,” CSCMP Explores…, Summer 2007, Bob Sabath with Dr. Judith M. Wipple

Despite the increase in industry focus on supply chain management and its integration philosophy, Fawcett and Magnan found that most of the organizations they studied are only at the early stages of inter-company collaboration. Part of the explanation for this limited activity is that there remains a significant gap in terms of management’s ability to integrate across internal functions due to different priorities, measures, objectives, processes, and terminology of operations-focused and customer-facing activities.

2006

Future of Marketing Summit held in Toronto by the Association for the Advancement of Relationship Marketing (AARM) featured Religence CEO Linda Sharp and Religence Director Ray Sheen and other thought leaders.

Sharp stated that business leaders recognize that competitive advantage and profitability lie in customer relationships. She argued, “Most businesses have not been able to take full advantage of this insight because they lack a critical relationship metric. If you can’t measure the customer interactions, the relationship is invisible.” Sharp shared how Religence offers a metric and methodology that allows marketers to measure cause and effect across the customer lifecycle and illustrated how this enables the real-time management and resource management required for sustainable profits and growth.

Sheen provided insights into “Engineering Lifetime Value into the Customer Experience.” Sheen, an engineer and product and process innovation expert, takes the following position: “By definition, product development engineers are product-centric, and product development has become a well-honed process for delivering the next generation widget. But in most cases the product, per se, is no longer a sufficient differentiator. Marketers are increasingly concerned about customer lifetime value and see the customer experience as an essential vehicle. By working together, marketing and engineering can define a Product Relationship Road Map—a road map that engineers positive, reoccurring experiences into the use of products to continue to build customer relationships after purchase.”

AARM CEO Robert Stacey noted that all the thought leaders made the case that building strong customer relationships is a journey, not an event or campaign. He added that the goal of building customer relationships is to build customer equity, the intangible that leads to trust, commitment, and a foundation for both parties to adapt to an ever changing business climate.

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Opening Marketing’s Black Box, Overcoming risk and uncertainty in sales and marketing, a SofTech Presentation by Religence CEO Linda Sharp. Sharp gave an overview of the Religence Framework for sustainable competitive advantage and high-profit revenue. She recommended that companies

  1. Align for Success
  • Identify the easiest and most profitable ways to grow.
  • Determine the best underlying customer relationship strategy plan to realize that profit.
  1. Operationalize Strategy to Deliver Advantage
  • Build an operational tracking system to measure relationship cause-and-effect in real time—for in the moment decisions, up-to-date profit results.
  • Analyze profit and behavior patterns—to repeat success and get better and better over time.

2005

Lead a series of projects for Otis Spunkmeyer to help finance executives bring discipline and control to sales and marketing. Provided the focus on profit needed to optimize product and customer mix. Introduced new performance indexes. Projects included a study of SKU profitability taken down to EBIDTA, analyzing trade spend, a study of new product profitability over time, and more.

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Engaged by Sun Microsystems to bring a customer focus to their predictive preventive maintenance initiative. Our value model showed that the cost of an outage to the customer so dominated the customer’s decision making that resources could be directed away from the more scientific predictions of failure and efficacy towards the customer-value-perspective developed by Religence.

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Applikon, Inc. wanted to know if they could claim customer service as a competitive advantage in a fast-paced market for biotech equipment. With our Voice of the Customer interviews and analysis, they could see where they stood with customers. They could see what they needed to fix in their infrastructure, systems, and procedures to claim that advantage.

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What Marketing Metrics Matter? Not ROI. Not cost per lead, time to close a sale, time to resolution of a service issue or the percentage of “perfect” orders. None of these metrics measure the progress in improving relationships with customers. None of these tell you how likely you are to make money with a strategy or how you could do it again.

Instead, the marketing metrics that matter are profit metrics that lead to real-time management and repeatable processes, according to Religence CEO Linda Sharp, in her presentation in January to the Business Intelligence Special Interest Group of the SDForum (now SV Forum).

To measure marketing, the Religence Framework measures customer relationship development—what happens to build status, potential, and value—relationship cause and effect. And delivers on the unfulfilled promise of CRM. Sharp believes this will fundamentally change how customer-facing teams in marketing and operations are measured and managed. Until now the data to achieve profit metrics have been missing, and no amount of data mining or predictive modelling can cover for data not being collected in the first place.

In an encore presentation at the Marketing Special Interest Group in April, Sharp and her team added a practical demonstration of a strategy decision profitability model to illustrate how a software company used marketing metrics that matter. The model is one of several key models in the Religence Framework.

Sharp set the stage for the alternative strategies and action plans the software company wanted to pre-test before rolling out. Religence Executive Consultant George Fruehan and Lumina Decision Systems Founder and CEO Max Henrion showed how using the model the software company could forecast which strategy was more likely to make the most money, given a limited budget.

2004

The Religence Team started a decade-long collaborative effort to develop a cohesive Religence Framework for Customer Relationship Intelligence (CRI) to commercialize the patent. With the patent’s relationship development process and analytics at its core, the framework incorporates and synchronizes established methods cross-functionally. The framework takes these methods to a new operational level for real-time management and better operational control based on real-time operational data.

The methods include Voice of the Customer research, value stream mapping, scenario planning, profitability segmentation, Activity-Based Costing, differentiated service rules, decision analysis, Customer Lifetime Value, data mining, predictive modeling, action learning teams, and PDCA (Plan. Do. Check. Act.). To learn more about the methods and tools Be In Touch.

2003

Religence Executive Consultant Bob Sabath published an article on his practical way to look simultaneously at the profitability of both marketing and operations:

“A New Way to Maximize Contribution,” Supply Chain Management Review, May/June 2003, Bob Sabath

By adopting a “contribution focus strategy” companies can approach new level of profitability. The key is to begin viewing customer and products not by volume but rather by profitability—integrating the customer-facing and operations-focused parts of the organization accordingly. The customer/product matrix presented here is a tool that can help make it all happen.

His pioneering approach to profitability segmentation is incorporated in the Religence Framework. As he put it, his methodology opens the door for both marketing and operations to share information in a non-threatening way and act in concert. The process works well, however, it still needs the day-to-day linkage between marketing tactics and results. Enter the Religence Framework for Customer Relationship Intelligence (CRI).

CRI captures market insights directly from marketing activities and customer interactions, then evaluates the patterns, compares them to plan, and shares them with management so that marketing efforts can be readjusted. Consequently, new promises can be made, economic benefits of revised actions can be understood, and appropriate responses can be taken—by both the customer-facing and operations-focused teams. The Religence Framework gets both sides playing on the same team.

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Incorporated Religence, Inc. in Delaware to commercialize the patent-pending process and analytics. Formed a cross-functional, multi-disciplinary consulting group to collaborate on the Religence Framework for Customer Relationship Intelligence (CRI) and to implement our tailored, breakthrough concepts with clients.

2002

Filed business process Patent No. US 7,526,434 for a Network-Based System and Method of Marketing Management. This method measures and manages marketing by measuring and managing the development of relationships between a company and its customers. That is, the method measures and manages what customers experience and how value is created.