Carmakers learn to mine databases

Halliday, Jean
April 2000
Advertising Age;4/17/2000, Vol. 71 Issue 17, ps6
Trade Publication
This article focuses on the integration of customer-relationship management (CRM) into the marketing efforts of the automobile industry. CRM is a highly evolved form of database marketing that takes advantage of software technology advances to use information accumulated about a consumer to create a more effective direct-marketing effort, according to Jeff Bickerstaff, new business director of electronic commerce consultancy SilverCube. The upfront CRM investment is substantial, admit automobile executives. On the other hand, it is approximately five times more expensive to attract buyers to your brand than to keep the ones you have, says Mary Doris-Smith, EVP and director of CRM business development at InterOne Marketing Group. Mercedes-Benz USA maintains it was a CRM pioneer. Automobile experts agree the marketer was among the industry's early devotees. The first CRM-related effort at Mercedes was its Client Assistance Center, a toll-free customer service in operation 24 hours daily.


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