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Blockchain reaches innovation stage on Gartner’s CRM sales hype cycle

Gartner sales hype cycle

Today Gartner revealed that blockchain has entered its 2019 hype cycle for CRM sales. Using the technology for lead generation is at the ‘Innovation Trigger’, with the firm predicting it will mature in 5 to 10 years. The announcement comes less than a month after the blockchain hype cycle release.

Gartner outlines the potential for distributed ledger technology (DLT) in sales, pointing out that it streamlines the lead generation process. A decentralized, trusted database of sources and contacts could be made possible with blockchain, allowing for traceable information and privacy protection.

Adnan Zijadic, Senior Principal Analyst at Gartner, said: “This is the first time blockchain is entering into the sales world and it has the potential to have a transformational impact on how sales organizations typically source leads and contact information.”

“Rather than source from unreliable third-party databases, users can instead partake in a network sharing system supported by blockchain infrastructure to source leads and contacts that fits their organization, while selling leads that do not match their ideal customer profile to other companies that may be in the market for such a lead or customer,” he explained.

The ‘Innovation Trigger’ is an early stage in Gartner’s hype cycle model, which occurs when an emerging technology reaches some breakthrough. This event could be a product launch or public demonstration which sparks industry attention. However, Gartner specified no particular spark, and there are few blockchain projects in CRM sales.

Zijadic agrees that it’s early days: “Despite all its potential benefits, it will take time for organizations to take notice of blockchain for lead generation due to its embryonic stage.”

He advises: “Sales leaders should seize the opportunity to learn more about blockchain’s potential use cases while preparing for an increase in the vendor landscape.”

Interestingly, this means that Gartner puts blockchain for CRM sales in the same position as for advertising. The firm’s 2019 digital marketing hype cycle was released last month. Despite blockchain projects in advertising from big names such as IBM and Unilever, as well as numerous other blockchain ad initiatives, the technology is deemed in the same early stage as in sales lead generation (we can’t think of any CRM dApps).

Perhaps that innovation spark was Salesforce’s launch of its blockchain solution in May. However, it was not aimed at lead generation specifically. The firm hopes to make the technology more accessible and utilize it for asset tracking, credentialing, and goods verification.

Image Copyright: Gartner