Breaking Chains: Why Your Business Needs an Independent CRM

Illustration of a woman enthused because she is using an independent CRM.

If customers are the heartbeat of your business, then your CRM is its pulse.

In fact, choosing the best CRM is so central to success that we wrote an in-depth checklist to help you select the best option for your business. But we left out one underappreciated — but critical — point for you to consider: Whether to choose an independent CRM or one that’s backed by private equity.

Now, you might be skeptical if this makes a difference. And yes, since we’re not funded by an outside entity, we might be a little biased.

But reasons exist that might convince you. So, what are they?

Let’s find out.

Independent CRM Benefit #1: Ultimate Access

Try to remember the last time you had a minor problem with something you paid for with your hard-earned money.

You probably called an 800 number and talked to some employee whom you’d never met (and probably will never speak to again).

Now, imagine you have a major issue that’s affecting your bottom line that needs resolving now. You probably had to ask to speak to a supervisor. And that supervisor’s supervisor. And up the chain you go.

The truth is, big companies are as beauracratic as they come. And the real problem solvers are practically impossible to reach.

Smaller, independent CRM companies like us welcome first-hand dialogue — the good, bad and ugly — from clients. It’s how we learn what you want and what you need. Acting on your input is how our company works to get better.

“I give clients my cellphone number because I want them to use it whether they have an idea or a complaint. Growth happens through feedback.”

Justin Wilkerson
Principal & Sole-Proprietor

Independent CRM Benefit #2: Long-Term Mentality

Have you ever heard the term “planned obsolescence?” It basically means companies design a product to intentionally fail.


Because there’s not nearly as much profit if customers can buy products for life. Corners are cut regularly in terms of staffing, materials, you name it. And if you need proof of this all-too-common obsession with revenue, you can see a 110 year old lightbulb that’s still burning bright — proof they just don’t make ‘em like they used to.

So, it can be argued that CRMs owned by private equity or that are publicly traded see quantity of capital as more important than quality of their product or service.

Nothing could be further from the truth at Inline. Whereas “No.” might be the default answer at private equity firms, or workarounds are proposed instead of working towards improving the end result, we aren’t interested in making a quick buck. Quite the opposite, actually.

“It would be cheaper if we left our product ‘as is.’ But that doesn’t do our clients or us any good.”

Marcy Johnson
VP of Operations and Client Management


Independent CRM Benefit #3: We Try Harder. Statisically.

“Service” and “caring” are pleasant-sounding platitudes. Here, they’re our mantra.

That’s because we understand that while our team is small, we’re built to power titans in the extended warranty industry. And instead of feeling overwhelmed, we feel inspired because each of us know we play a crucial role in success for us and clients alike.

If we had to put a number on it, we’d say that makes us try… roughly 70% more.

And our efforts are recognized with:

  • In-office massages every other week
  • Catered holiday meals
  • Special eclipse-viewing retreats

Simply put, we feel valued. And that carries over to how we treat clients.

Independent CRM Benefit #4: Independent Thinking

Investors and shareholders hold an inordinate amount of sway at private equity firms. At best, their interests don’t align with those of clients. At worst, they can be in opposition.

And outside influences have a tendency to win too often.

Independent CRM companies like ours steer our own ship. We’re free to think however we want — and unsurprisingly, our line of thinking matches our clients’.

Integrating applications you bring to us? We’ll listen.

Uncommon asks? We’ll strongly consider each and every one.

And we’ll accomplish more, faster, because there is no red tape at our office. Just open doors.

“We pay attention to how clients use our CRM and do our best to roll out new features based on what we notice.”

Justin Wilkerson

Convinced Yet?

Hopefully so. And if not, we’d like to think you have a better understanding of why we approach our business the way we do — including free, no obligation demos of our CRM.

Give it a try. You might just free yourself from working with faceless entities.