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We do exist!

I wasn’t expecting to write this blog, but after reading the blog on how Social CRM vendors don’t walk the talk, a fire was lit inside of me.  The problem started with this q blog located here which had one quote in a raw data spreadsheet.

http://www.destinationcrmblog.com/2009/12/07/exclusive-social-crm-vendors-dont-walk-the-talk-guest-blog-by-jeremiah-owyang/

The quote in question was:

“I know SAP has thriving communities for developers, but I’m not seeing it on the main product page. Does SAP CRM have customers that talk to each other?  It’s not clear.”

The problem with this quote

My problem with this quote is that it basically ignores the entire SAP CRM BPX community, because it is not linked to the SAP.COM CRM product page.  However if you googled the SAP CRM solution, our community shows up in the results list.  The quote makes it look like we don’t exist, when it fact we do.  

I’m personally passionate about this community as it has allowed me to be successful in supporting a SAP CRM solution as a SAP customer with no other CRM resources on site.  You may point out that I don’t ask a lot of questions and answer more than what I ask, but I read almost 100% of what is posted in two of the CRM forums(CRM General and Framework and CRM Webclient UI).  In addition a lot of the questions I answer are problems that I sometimes face in my day to day work.  We together as a community are the reason why it is successful.  

Stay tuned for the next episode

As this story unfolds, I will let you know how my conversation with the author of the study unfolds.   In the meanwhile I think I need to get back to that wiki project that I want to finish up by the end of this year.

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11 Comments

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  1. Harshit Kumar
    Stephen,

    The problem lies somewhere in the notion that SAP is all about ERP. This probably is still ingrained in the mindset of many…rather too many. So it will take some more time before CRM is given it’s due recognition, even i am fighting for the same cause.

    I do read most of the Blogs posted on CRM, even i do post answers to some of the problems i faced and share it with others, i find this as a way to interact with the larger sea of SAP CRM Professional across the continents.

    We do more then just Exists!

    Regards,
    Harshit

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  2. Mark Finnern
    Hi Stephen,

    thanks for rallying the vibrant SAP CRM community. The article does come across as if there is none.

    What we from SAP need to do is a better job integrating that community goodness into our main CRM product page.

    A prospect should get the vibrancy of the community the minute he lays eyes on our CRM page: Oh, wow such active forums, blogs, wiki area. I will be taken good care off. My probability of success implementing CrM just went through the roof. (We should do a study of the correlation of implementations success to the level of activity in the community.)

    Better integration is for me a valuable take away from Jeremiah’s analysis.

    All the best, Mark.

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  3. Carsten Kasper
    I was a little surprised to see a study on Social CRM and its elements.
    I often do complain myself about SAP’s website structure and the information resources available. Having done some trainings on SAP CRM WebClient by now I always recieve the same responses from the audience when I show the path to the resources that are available on the net.

    Most people know about the forums and a lot about the blogs as they are clearly visible on the SDN page. Both are elements of “social”. The same goes, at least in my opinion, for the BPX and the load of articles written by partners and SAP’s staff.
    All done by a community.

    I had a look at the linked Google spreadsheet. For “Community and Integration” SAP recieves a total of 0 points. The criteria is defined as having a community with extra points for showing it on the main page. In the spreadsheet the author states the quote Stephen has given before. So he knows about the communities, but gives no points?
    Next thing is the Twitter part “and any Twitter accounts they may have.” I have been following about 2-3 twitter accounts that have been specifically about SAP CRM. Though I do not know if they are “official” that show a nice SAP logo beside the name…

    One last thing: For this study, correct me if I am wrong, were exactly two researchers. I could find two people that would swear an oath that there is a man living in the moon.

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  4. Vijay Vijayasankar
    I am not sure how many people actually go to a home page anymore and start from there, even if you are familiar with that site. Most people google what they want and start from there. If CRM community is known to google, it should be treated as it is known to the world.

    Of course, integrations could always be better between SAP sites, and I really wish to be able to navigate from an SAP screen or error message to an SCN query result page that shows me associated content. But till then, I trust google will guide me.

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  5. Anne Fish
    Hi Stephen,

    I too was taken back by Jeremiah blog. After further investigation, I found that he did not see the flashing banner on our sap.com/CRM product page linking to SCN.
    We are in process of making sure that it is clear on both pages that CRM@BPX has a direct link to our Vibrant Community!

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  6. Stephen Johannes Post author
    I have not responded yet to everyone’s comment’s because I wanted to get the community reaction first rather try to argue for my position in the blog.

    To be fair I’m still awaiting response back to this post and in the background my e-mail sent.  However this has been more a scheduling/techonology conflict rather than a lack of interest.  So please don’t shoot the original messenger yet.

    Take care,

    Stephen

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  7. Gregory Misiorek
    is Jeremiah trying to be the next (Gideon) Gartner (Group)? maybe, he will be some day, but for now, i wouldn’t worry about his blog, but i do applaud SAP for linking to SAP communities right off the main sap.com web page. it just needs to be moderated very closely, not to create unnecessary liability for the host, ie SAP AG.
    just comparing with the rest of MISO, i can only see Oracle having the community link more prominent than SAP. i couldn’t find any community links at eitherIBM or Microsoft, but i have a strong feeling that their legal departments had something to do with it.
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    1. Stephen Johannes Post author
      The cool part is that if you sap.com/crm and then on the right hand side there is a box that says:
      “Connect, Collaborate, & Co-Innovate”, which directly links to the SAP CRM BPX page.

      That was actually fixed as direct result of the article, this blog and community feedback. 

      Take care,

      Stephen

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      1. Gregory Misiorek
        Stephen,

        i’m happy for you, but would like to see IFRS or at least BPX, too when i enter sap.com/ifrs or sap.com/bpx, but i think one vote may actually not be enough.

        rgds,

        greg

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