‘Hints, Tips and Predictions’

This week Harry Lloyd, Head of CRM, takes over the blog


I appear to be inundated with advice. People I have never heard of are, very kindly, helping me steer through the forthcoming year with hints, tips and predictions. Whether it’s tips on investments (I consider simply breaking even each month a major success); tips on how to shed some weight (I have never understood how a multi-billion pound industry was created based on- eat less: exercise more); destinations I must go to before I die (I can’t afford any of them – see tips on investments); how to avoid death this year (maybe I should squeeze a destination in after all); and my personal favourite, ‘Top tips on how to seduce your boss’ (please visit and take a peek at the Finance Director – enough said!).

The point here is that I haven’t had a single relevant bit of help, and I mean no one has even come close in giving me a piece of meaningful advice. I don’t expect to see a ‘Top tips for an overworked, slightly grumpy marketeer with four kids and a mortgage the size of Africa’s debt mountain’ but it
can’t be impossible for someone to get in the right vicinity. I spend my life filling out sign-up forms – ‘tell us your views so we can personalise our service to meet your needs’ – I appear to be wasting my time. My working life, CRM, is all about relevance: the delivery of a timely, meaningful customer
experience – nothing frustrates me more than seeing so many companies gather information and then stuff it up.

I can’t predict the future. Tea leaves, sheep’s entrails, crystal balls, tarot are the tools of charlatans, tricksters and con artists. I think I’ve lived through a handful of end-of-world predictions already and thanks to Mayanism and a particularly bad film, I have 2012 to look forward to yet. I’d be willing to bet my house on surviving that year (unless of course my partner finds out about my planned boys trip to Amsterdam……).

What I can do is look back at the last year and make a solid commitment to the future. You can look to the past and ensure that success is repeated and failures avoided. Only a fool fails to learn from experience – you won’t be castigated for trying and failing in this business but I wouldn’t suggest you repeat it. We recently sent an email to our customers reminding them of how much has been done to enhance our service in the past year – once we had pulled it together it was a pleasant surprise for us to see how much we had achieved. Icebreakers, Advanced Search, Filtering, Activity feeds, Status Updates and so much more have advanced the experience our customers receive and made us the success story we are today. What I can safely predict to our partners is that there will be more developments like these this year. Others can worry about simply trying to keep up.

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