The next generation of CRM begins with the premise that the database starts full. It should constantly uncover everything it can about your prospects and customers. It should monitor website updates, news, public filings, posts to social networks, technology vendors, job openings and new hires. This is data you could piece together on your own, but it is far more efficient to tap into a provider that solves the problem end-to-end — everything from crawling the web, to striking data deals, to molding the huge corpus of insight into something actionable.
Just adding hundreds of additional fields to a contact record isn’t of much value. Instead it should extract insight using machine learning. Just as Waze routes the fastest path through traffic, companies need apps to tell their employees where to focus their energy. At any given time, don’t you want your CRM system to help you understand which prospects are most likely to convert? And which are going to have the biggest revenue impact?