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The Portland Trail Blazers has selected Microsoft Dynamics CRM 3.0 to more effectively serve an increasingly wide range of customers. The Portland Trail Blazers’ IT team expects the new system to play a critical role as the organization shifts to serving a more demographically diverse range of customers due to the recent repurchasing of the team’s home facility, the Portland Rose Garden.
The franchise chose to replace its existing Onyx CRM system with Microsoft Corp.’s premier customer relationship management system to help manage and maintain relationships with not only its core of basketball fans, but concertgoers and attendees of many other types of events as well. Integrated with Microsoft® Office Outlook®, Microsoft Dynamics CRM has the same look and feel as Outlook, overcoming user training and acceptance issues right from the start. Microsoft CRM enhances IT’s ability to put business intelligence into the hands of those responsible for sales and marketing, Microsoft Dynamics CRM beat the Onyx solution in terms of cost as well; the Onyx system cost thousands of dollars per seat and the Microsoft option came in at $1,000 per seat.
“In the end it all comes down to how much we know about our customers,” said Chris Dill, chief information officer with the Portland Trail Blazers. “And the more we know about our customers, the more we’re able to renew current customers or up-sell customers or sub-segment our sales messages to sell based on the customers’ preferences. With the valuable data that Microsoft CRM makes available to our sales teams, we can offer special promotions to fans based on their taste, from specific players to specific teams to specific musical artists and special events. We expect the system to dramatically improve the customer service and sales aspect of our business.”
Dill says one of the chief benefits of Microsoft Dynamics CRM is that the system is suited to be at the center of the “Yield Engine.” That engine consists of entities such as the ticketing system, the sponsorship inventory system, Web sites, reporting engines and various other databases. Dill expects Microsoft CRM to help the organization tie all data together to yield better results. The Yield Engine should help specific sections of the organization including inside and outside ticket sales, group ticket sales, overall customer service, and sponsorship sales and support reach their short- and long-term goals.
Web-based architecture. The Portland Trail Blazers expect the Web-based architecture of Microsoft CRM to deliver benefits in numerous ways, including the ability for sales and service representatives to walk among the crowds during events to update account information and make additional sales via handheld devices.
Microsoft partner Ascentium Corp., a leading technology and marketing consulting firm that specializes in Microsoft Dynamics CRM, is working with the Portland Trail Blazers to develop and implement the system. Ascentium’s expertise was essential in identifying the right technology to best meet the needs of the Portland Trail Blazers.
“The Portland Trail Blazers is a dynamic business with complex scenarios and technology needs,” said Michael Park, corporate vice president for the U.S. Dynamics business at Microsoft. “Microsoft Dynamics CRM has the power required to help this business rise to new heights with a new level of customer service.”