Paul Greenberg is a guy I trust, even if he likes to bust my chops every now and again. So, when he tells me things, I tend to listen. We have been having some great conversations, which will become part of a multi-part webcast series I will post on the SugarCRM site.
But anyway, Paul as giving me a hard time about SugarCRM not doing a good job of talking about how “2.0” or “social” of a company it really is. And if you don’t know Paul (check out his blog) – this is Paul’s reason d’etre. He lives and breathes this stuff. So, long story short, while Paul is impressed with our ability to harness the creative energy of 80,000 people in our community – we do a piss poor job of talking about it in the context of what’s hip and cool in the tech world.
I hate to say it – but he’s right.
SugarCRM is actually VERY “2.0” in that we do engage in conversation with our customers, in ways they want to talk to us. We listen, as well. These conversations – in our Forums, on support calls and just being “out there” drive our product direction and aid our success. We just don’t really talk about all that, since it is our manufacturing process and not our product. I mean, how many times does Ball Park Franks tell you what’s IN the hot dog, rather then what the end result is?
But maybe we should. Because really, our manufacturing process is what makes the product so good. (Unlike hot dogs – which are only made good if there happens to be some baseball being played nearby.) And as we add more and more “social” aspects to the platform in the next year, we will try to productize what is a really amazing process we have created with our community. If other firms can replicate our successful community building model in other areas (especially in B2C scenarios) we stand to have a huge amount of incremental success. We spent some time creating the platform for all of this cool stuff with the 5.x releases, now comes the fun stuff.
So, thanks Paul for helping me get all that in perspective… 😉