13 of the Top CRM Books You Should Be Reading

The editors at Solutions Review have compiled the best CRM books worth reading based on relevance, ratings, publish date, and ability to add value to a business.

SR Finds 106There is no shortage of CRM resources and learning tools available online (including the buyer’s guides and best practice articles here on Solutions Review). But sometimes, it’s best to do things the old-fashioned way, as few resources can match the depth and comprehensive detail of a well-written book. Solutions Review has researched for you, as we’ve carefully selected the best CRM books you and your team should check out.

You will find a library of texts from recognized leaders, experts, and technology professionals in the field. From CRM implementation to social media, these publications have something to offer even the most tenured CRM administrator.

The Top CRM Books You Should Be Reading

Beyond CRM Basics: An MVP Guide to Expand Your Knowledge and Grow Your Career

OUR TAKE: Certified Salesforce MVP and founder of the Salesforce Certification Study Group Deepa Patel has written a book for readers looking for a comprehensive guide to lasting CRM success.

Description: Salesforce MVP and founder of the Salesforce Certification Study Group Deepa Patel provides readers with a comprehensive guide for long-term CRM success. Technology is evolving rapidly, which means the CRM systems companies rely on are likely to change from year to year. To help you stay on top of emerging trends, Patel has written a book that emphasizes the importance of working with CRM experts who understand how the platform changes and can apply timely analysis to the day-to-day use of the platform. In addition, readers who finish the book can expect to understand better the people and practices they should employ to do their jobs and increase their industry value effectively.


Cracking the Sales Management Code: The Secrets to Measuring and Managing Sales Performance

OUR TAKE: Written for sales managers and executives, this book focuses on improving the way you manage a sales force and maximize productivity.

Description: In this book, writer Jason Jordan identifies and examines five of the fundamental sales processes that leaders need to improve business performance. While the book is one of the older ones on the list, the text provides timeless frameworks and practices that sales managers can (and should) adopt in their evolving sales strategies. Readers will learn how to apply these strategies to the tools and data available to them through their CRM and focus on prioritizing the three sales metrics that drive productivity and growth. This is a good resource for sales-oriented organizations and business executives.


CRM For Dummies

OUR TAKE: Writer Lars Helgeson has helped build and maintain a CRM platform that’s been used by over 3,000 clients worldwide. With his extensive experience, he can educate you on the best ways to get your CRM solutions up and running.

Description: Specifically written for small businesses looking to understand CRM functionality and adaptability better, this accessible book will help readers across industries and job titles identify what kind of solution is right for their business, learn how to define their market segments, build a solid internal structure, optimize leads, automate processes, and become familiar with the tactics and strategies that can save a company time and money. This book also explores how CRM is more than simply software; it requires team restructuring, cross-team collaboration, transparency, and more.


CRM at the Speed of Light, Fourth Edition: Social CRM 2.0 Strategies, Tools, and Techniques for Engaging Your Customers

OUR TAKE: While over 10 years old, this is one of the most well-known books on CRM out there. In its 4th edition, CRM at the Speed of Light has been printed in 9 languages and taught in over 70 universities as a primary text.

Description: This book showcases some of the best practices and techniques needed to execute a successful Social CRM implementation. Paul Greenberg explains how CRM has evolved into a synergetic discussion that depends on trust and a transparent business environment. In addition, this book provides readers with strategies for engaging with customers and expert guidance on how your organization can adopt the newest CRM trends and innovations. While another older title, the book contains reviews of CRM developments (like vertical applications and multifaceted CRM frameworks) that modern professionals can still value from analyzing.


The Customer Centricity Playbook: Implement a Winning Strategy Driven by Customer Lifetime Value

OUR TAKE: Authored by Wharton School professor Peter Fader and Wharton Interactive’s executive director Sarah Toms, this book will help readers see their customers as individuals with unique needs, desires, and motivations.

Description: It can be difficult to balance treating your customers personally without coming across as needy or overbearing. To help, Fader and Toms have written a text that can help readers understand customers as individuals and use a 360-degree analysis of the various elements that lead to customer-focused service to improve those crucial customer relationships. Of course, CRM lies at the heart of these strategies, as CRM is the technology where you will be cataloging customer information, communication, engagement, and more. This book is a must-read for organizations looking to develop lengthy, fruitful relationships with their customers.


Customer Experience 3.0: High-Profit Strategies in the Age of Techno Service

OUR TAKE: This book will walk readers through the many advantages of CRM solutions and is a great resource for companies looking to double down on their customer interactions.

Description: With the rise of social media and smartphones, customers expect more from brands before deciding to make a purchase. Inter-connectivity and recent technological advances have given organizations a variety of new marketing avenues to pursue, but a large portion of companies don’t properly manage these new resources. This text provides readers with guidance on what works and what doesn’t work. In addition to explaining the advantages of CRM and how to use it effectively, Customer Experience 3.0 provides a plethora of information regarding customer experience and customer service.


The Definitive Guide to Social CRM: Maximizing Customer Relationships with Social Media to Gain Market Insights, Customers, and Profits

OUR TAKE: Author Baron Goldenberg offers readers a four-step methodology for social CRM success and is best suited for organizations looking to expand their social media functionalities.

Description: In today’s marketing climate, social media can have a massive impact on customer relationships. This text provides readers with strategies for getting the most value out of social CRM. Goldenberg’s book provides an assessment of how social media is changing customer relationships and uses his industry expertise to identify smarter, longer-lasting ways to integrate social CRM into a business. He also provides a guideline for success and teaches readers about important aspects like customer relationship optimization, social platform engagement, and integration.


Do You CRM Me?: An Analytical Guide to Customer Relationship Management

OUR TAKE: Designed to function as an entryway into CRM analytics, Omer Lizotte’s Do You CRM Me? helps readers discover an easier way to convert numbers and analytics into actionable strategies

Description: This text will teach readers how to access and utilize large amounts of data and statistics through their CRM software solutions and use them to generate meaningful marketing strategies. Analysis and reports won’t do much good if the information isn’t utilized correctly to increase sales, though, which is why author Omer Lizotte explains that you don’t need to fully understand mathematics to utilize the information available in your CRM fully. To back this up, Lizotte covers topics like setting up a data mart, translating analysis into strategy, predictive modeling, and more.


Effective CRM Using Predictive Analysis

OUR TAKE: Antonios Chorianopoulos has used his 15 years of analytical CRM and data mining experience to compile a handbook for academics, students, and practitioners alike.

Description: This step-by-step guide bridges the gap between analytics and marketing by focusing on effective data mining techniques through CRM. Effective CRM is divided into three parts: the first part provides readers with a methodological roadmap. The second explains useful data mining algorithms that are accessible for business users without technical experience. Finally, the third part explores various case studies in the banking, retail, and telecommunications industries. This text is a great resource for CRM managers, data analysts, and statisticians looking to improve the way they use their CRM for analytical purposes.


Organization, Technology, Culture: A Playbook For Implementing and Maximizing the Value of CRM

OUR TAKE: If you’re planning on implementing, or have already implemented, a CRM solution, this book will help ensure that it raises your organization’s performance.

Description: With the rise of artificial intelligence and machine learning, data management and CRM use are becoming increasingly important. Yet even with the importance of CRM, many executives feel that their sales and marketing efforts are lackluster. This book is for readers who are planning on implementing or have already implemented a CRM. In addition to deploying new software, CRM brings change to an environment by enabling teams to change their behavior. If your organization struggles with these aspects of the sales and marketing process, this is an excellent resource.


ROI from CRM: It’s about sales process, not just technology

OUR TAKE: In this book, author Brian Gardner mines his decades of industrial sales experience for simple, effective, and repeatable strategies to help readers get the most value from their CRM solutions.

Description: This text is designed to encourage readers to approach CRM solutions to effectively share data and engage different team members in a meaningful way. It offers valuable advice regarding avoiding common mistakes, breaking out of old habits, how CRM is a revenue generator and not simply an expense, and much more. The text also addresses and highlights how to identify the critical sales time between the front and back ends of the sales cycle. This is a great read, regardless of whether you have already used CRM or not, and applies to companies of various sizes and industries.


Salesforce.com For Dummies, 6th Edition

OUR TAKE: Written by Liz Kao and Jon Paz, two experts with years of experience using, selling, implementing, and consulting on Salesforce projects, this book will help you learn the ins and outs of the Salesforce platform.

Description: Written by Salesforce insiders with years of experience, this text is focused on teaching readers how to organize their contacts, schedule business appointments, use forecasting tools, create projects based on past performance, and much more. Applicable to both Windows and Mac users, this easy-to-understand guide will quickly get readers up to speed with one of the most popular and feature-rich CRM solutions on the market. In addition, this guide will also make sure you know all the ins and outs of the Salesforce platform and are equipped with the skills needed to take advantage of its many functionalities.


The Social Customer: How Brands Can Use Social CRM to Acquire, Monetize, and Retain Fans, Friends, and Followers

OUR TAKE: Author Adam Metz has helped nearly 100 companies acquire, manage, monetize, and retain customers with the power of social CRM. In his book, he provides a resource for companies looking to tap into a deeper level of audience engagement.

Description: This book emphasizes that people who follow your company on social media are potential customers and fans. Author Adam Metz explains to his readers that social media can be a great way to get customers and companies in sync and, as a result, develop their relationship into a mutually beneficial revenue opportunity. Topics covered include how to transform your brand, how to harness the power of collaboration, how to win loyalty through individualized treatment, and more. The Social Customer also includes case studies, anecdotes, and other resources to help companies take advantage of their social CRM.


Links to READ: The Best Salesforce Training Courses on LinkedIn Learning

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William Jepma