Mobile Customer Relationship Management (mCRM): Constraints and Challenges

Mobile Customer Relationship Management (mCRM): Constraints and Challenges

Günter Silberer (University of Mannheim, Germany) and Sebastian Schulz (University of Göttingen, Germany)
Copyright: © 2010 |Pages: 17
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-074-5.ch010
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Abstract

Customer Relationship Management is conducive to providing customer information and the correct way to deal with customers. After the advent of the world-wide-web (www), which brought an increase in customer data and intensified CRM discussions in its wake, we are now entering the age of computerized mobile communication with diverse possibilities to enlist the services of mobile people. This chapter outlines the new and latest technological developments and the resultant capabilities of mobile CRM. Looking to a future in which mobile marketing efforts may become increasingly important, the erosion of personal freedom and the threat to this freedom becomes all the more significant. The findings from reactance research do not only specify the reactance conditions but also the reactance consequences. Previous research has sometimes pointed to self-determination as an acceptance factor yet failed to analyze the reactance risk more closely. This chapter will attempt to close this gap. In this respect, the initial findings of an empirical study will be presented, revealing that the acceptance of mobile services is surprisingly low and the reactance risk for mobile services is not to be underestimated, and that reactance involves the corresponding behavior on the part of the user. The plea is to consider the acceptance risk in the mobile CRM of the future and select a customer-friendly permission policy.
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Crm As A Factor Of Success

The relationship between the supplier and his customers is crucial for the success of both the supplier and the customer. Consequently, customer relations have to be nurtured as a symbiotic relationship with mutual benefits for both parties. This transpires through good benefits and acceptable prices, as well as need-based channels of distribution and presentations and pointed communication. The mixture of these measures is vital over a longer period of time (for CRM as System cf. (Meyer, 2005; Paulissen et al, 2007)). Anyone who is looking to cultivate customer relations has to know what the customer wants, what he rejects and what he is prepared to spend. Consequently, CRM not only entails an action mix but also an analysis mix (Silberer, 2001, pp. 161-176 (especially on Data quality see (Missi, 2005)). The variety of CRM definitions in different disciplines (e.g. Information System (IS) or Marketing literature) must not belie this (Boulding et al, 2005, pp. 155-166; Ngai, 2005, pp. 582-605; Paulissen et al, 2007; Payne & Frow, 2005, pp. 167-176). Payne und Frow (2005, p. 167) also criticize the many partly contradictory or incomplete definitions. Based on an analysis of various sources (twelve different definitions in total), the authors worked out the relevant aspects and similarities and came up with the following work definition: “CRM is a strategic approach that is concerned with creating improved shareholder value through the development of appropriate […]. CRM unites the potential of relationship marketing strategies and IT to create profitable, long-term relationships […]. CRM provides enhanced opportunities to use data and information to both understand customers and cocreate value with them. This requires a cross-functional integration of processes, people, operations, and marketing capabilities that is enabled through information, technology, and applications.” (ebda). The definition reflects the current state of knowledge and the essence of CRM particularly well and will also be taken as a basis here.

This chapter focused on the adoption of CRM in mobile communication and the acceptance and reactance of mobile services. Therefore, we outline the role of CRM in the age of mobile communication in the next section. Afterwards, we specify the technical parameters of mobile CRM, before highlighting possibilities of context-aware Services. In the following, we deal with the state of acceptance and reactance within the mCRM and using mobile services. Furthermore, we present the findings of empirical concerning mobile services, acceptance and reactance. The chapter finished with a conclusion.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Permission Policy: A user-friendly permission policy seems to be a important factor to avoid reactance in mobile CRM. The reactivity risk can be contained by allowing a service provider to have his or her customers decide when, by whom and how often he or she can be contacted. For the technical implementation of a user-friendly permission policy, we need to distinguish between a pull strategy and a push strategy.

Acceptance: Acceptance is process by which something new is approved by a customer. It consists of a attitude acceptance and express itself in a behavioral acceptance of something, e.g. mobile communication.

Reactance: Reactance occurs if there is a perceived restriction of freedom of a person. The core assumptions of the reformulated reactance theory and results defined three more terms for the state of reactance: the importance of freedom, the legitimacy of the restriction felt and the possibilities of compensating for the restriction of freedom with the benefits mobile services can offer.

Technical Base Protocols: There are different protocols on which mobile services can minute. Both known Internet protocols, such as TCP, IP and UPD, and specifications (Bluetooth) and protocols from the mobile radio sector, such as WAE and WSP, play an important role in this.

Mobile Terminals: Mobile PCs, cell phones and PDAs, as well as multifunctional appliances, e.g. smart phones (cell phone and PDA) considered as mobile terminals. The hardware used on the user page influences the range of mobile service. The features relevant for the distribution of and access to mobile services are primarily the size of the display, the computing power and the memory capacity.

Mobile CRM: Mobile CRM is the implementation of CRM in mobile business. Thereby CRM is defined as “a strategic approach that is concerned with creating improved shareholder value through the development of appropriate […]. CRM unites the potential of relationship marketing strategies and IT to create profitable, long-term relationships […]. CRM provides enhanced opportunities to use data and information to both understand customers and cocreate value with them. This requires a cross-functional integration of processes, people, operations, and marketing capabilities that is enabled through information, technology, and applications. (Payne und Frow 2005, p. 167)”.

Network Technology: Mobile customers can be reached via different networks. Mobile network platforms or wide area mobile network platforms, such as GSM or UMTS networks. Mobile network platforms reach theoretical transmission rates from 14.5 Kbit/s (GSM) to 384 kBit/s (CDMA/ UMTS)..

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