Salesforce claims to be the #1 service at “opening doors” and “closing deals”. What they don’t tell you is that they are selling you a frame and you supply the door. They also don’t tell you that the guy installing the door is not a carpenter, but one of the key executives at your company responsible for bringing in clients.
Stale data, inconsistent usage, and end-user skepticism are the dirty secrets of the CRM world. Whoever came up with the idea that salespeople, lawyers, bankers and senior consultants – the people that bring in the business for your firm – should be the ones to keep your contact data up-to-date, must have had it in for IT and marketing people.
For professional service firms – where the person “selling” the service is often the person “delivering” the service, there is a solution to this problem – Relationship Capital Management. This is the missing piece to CRM. It is the “door”. Relationship Capital Management takes the individual relationships of your firm and turns them into institutional relationships that can easily be leveraged for business development. It includes the most accurate global database of executive profiles in the world.
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However, having access to accurate people data only solves half the problem. The key part of Relationship Capital Management is mapping the relationships between contacts and their networks. Your CRM system should tell you who you know in the outside world (assuming your colleagues entered the data!). A CRM system does not tell you who your contacts in the outside world know and why. Relationship Capital answers this question. It tells you the relationship mapping of key executives and who they know. One of your staff may know the CEO of ACME Widget, but they won’t know that the CEO works with a board member at ABC Co.—a firm that one of your colleagues is pitching. This notion of “surrounding a relationship” is becoming a critical success factor for converting sales in today’s economy.
BoardEx is an expert in Relationship Capital Management and coined the term. The company began in 1999 and launched its service in the mid-2000’s taking in an investment from Goldman Sachs in 2008. Today, it is a secret weapon for over 100,000 users who use the relationship intelligence extracted from its profile data and algorithms to consistently win business from peer firms. Clients include the leading firms amongst consulting, investment banking, law, executive search and PE. As well, over 400 academic research papers have been written using its profile and relationship mapping data. In short, any company who targets executives and board members at middle market or large cap firms could greatly benefit from BoardEx.
BoardEx is provided as a cloud-based or server-side implementation. It is frequently integrated into Salesforce, Microsoft Dynamics, or proprietary CRM systems. Configurations range from a simple widget displaying profile and relationship data, all the way through to feeds that update profiles and relationship maps each night.
BoardEx was recently acquired by The Deal, led by its President, Michael Crosby, and has been significantly expanding its service since then. 2016 enhancements include large scale expansion of the number of profiles collected along with the integration of more in-depth profiles on each executive and improved mobile functionality. The Deal, known for generating exclusive stories on M&A, is also launching a unified workflow that will identify potential acquisition candidates and will use BoardEx to show your best relationship path into those candidate companies.