I’m about to start a guest blogging project for Sage Software, the company that brings you ACT!, Sage CRM, and SalesLogix. With their partner summit starting Monday, we figured it was a good time for me to introduce myself to the Sage user community, and here’s how I did it:
“Hi, I’m Marshall Lager, and if you read the ACT! by Sage blogs you’ll be seeing a fair bit more of that name in the coming weeks. That’s because Sage has invited me in as a guest blogger to provide my own perspective on CRM, Sage products, and customer experience. I’ll be kicking it off at Sage Summit, the annual partner conference, but I wanted to introduce myself and give you an idea of what you’ll be in for.
“You may be wondering, “Who is this guy, and why should I care?” Fair questions. I’m the founder and managing principal of Third Idea Consulting LLC, a consultancy focusing on CRM, especially social CRM and the increased power social media have given to customers. Those of you who read CRM magazine may also know me from there, where I was senior editor for four and a half excellent years. I’m the guy who wrote (and still writes) the back page column, Pint of View.
“That tells you a bit about who and what I am, but it might be just as useful to tell you who and what I am not.
- I am not a Sage implementer, employee, or partner. I am being paid formy writing, and I respect Sage’s products and am familiar enough with them to not make a fool of myself or the company. If you have specific technical questions about integration, business processes, or software capabilities, though, you’ll be better off talking to a Sage exec or ACT! Certified Consultant (ACC). I’m more of an ideas guy.
- I am not a spokesperson for anybody’s brand but my own. But maybe I can help you with yours. One of my chief contentions is that businesses don’t have the monodirectional control of their communications or their brands that they once did, and I think it’s a good thing. I’m all about customer empowerment, and how it can ultimately make businesses better. As such, I don’t really care what CRM system or techniques you use, as long as you are doing whatever it takes to keep your customers coming back with smiles on their faces, cash in their hands, and referrals in their mouths.
- I am not always serious. Writing is a pleasure for me. Thinking about CRM is also a pleasure. Combining them makes me do a little happy dance in my brain. At the same time, I realize that serious business shouldn’t always be serious, and we all need a change of perspective from time to time in order to prevent tunnel vision. Again, readers of Pint of View already know what I’m talking about. You might not always agree with me, or laugh with me, or find my comments in good taste, but they should make you think. If that’s happening, I’m doing my job.
“So, what can you expect from me? Over the next couple of months, I’ll be providing you with my perspective on the CRM industry, Sage news, and the state of customer/company dialogue in general. I’m starting with Sage Summit because it’s a big event, so you will see me all over the conference, talking to people like you about what matters to you. There will probably be some video podcasts or Q&A sessions along the way, so you can interact more directly with me.
“I’m also available for phone consultations, on-site visits, white papers, weddings, and bar mitzvahs. But you’ll have to pay me. The guest blog is entirely at your disposal. I hope you find it useful.”
There it is. If anybody’s going to be in the Atlanta area this week, look for me with notebook and Flip video in hand, trying to provide my perspective on what’s going on with Sage. I’ll be continuing the guest blog for a couple of months, and will mirror it here. I’m looking forward to the access to Sage that this will give me, as well as the chance to affect its users and partners in a (hopefully) positive way.