In my last post, I wrote about the “other” form of CRM – Cause Related Marketing, but I thought that it would be beneficial to explain what the other “CRM” – customer relationship management is.
Most marketers will already be aware of what a customer relationship management, or CRM consists of, but there has been a revolution in the industry as social media becomes the main vehicle through which brands communicate with their consumers.
Generally, it is easier to retain current customers, than seek out new ones; this is why it is smart for companies to put together a strategy to keep their customers happy – to retain their business. According to the Canada Business Network, CRM
“Leverages technology to create stronger relationships with former, current and prospective customers while maximizing your marketing and customer service capabilities.” With a strong CRM database, companies are able to actively manage their consumer relations in an organized and systematic manner.
Now, What Exactly is Social CRM?
As social media has gained popularity, companies have had to find different ways to engage and gather information about their fans, or consumers online. With this growing demand, came the concept of a new form of CRM – Social CRM, like the platform offered by MavenSocial. Social CRM is a database strategy that engages and retains current customers within a social context. Brands have fully jumped on board with social media, and with that they are finding new ways to engage their customers. Consumers are online, as a result of that; brands need to find new ways of understanding who their brand influencers are.
According to Paul Greenberg, author and leading authority on SCRM, stated that Social CRM is
“…designed to engage the customer in a collaborative conversation in order to provide a mutually beneficial value in a trusted and transparent business environment. It’s the company response to the customer’s owning of the relationship.”
Many times, this conversation is produced through contests or sweepstakes online. Through entering, or “opting-in” to a contest, the entrant gives the company permission to contact them in the future. A large database is build with the information you provided the company, creating a strong customer demographic database.
A social CRM is a must-have for companies because it helps aggregate consumer information in a social context. Social CRM gathers data information such as consumer profiles, sentiment, demographics, and brand influence scores. As a result of this information, companies are able to separate their consumers into specifics niches based off of their demographics and expressed interests.
The information gathered in a social CRM also helps companies build accurate intent to purchase models that segregate people based off of their likelihood to purchase based off of their life-stage such as pregnancy, newly married, new home, etc. By analyzing the data, you can:
- Identify your best customers
- Enrich and customize the way you communicate with your customers
- Manage marketing campaigns
- Reduce customer response times
- Serve wider geographical regions
Something old is being made new again with the integration of CRM in a social context. Social CRM will help brands gain deeper insight into who their customers truly are, and how they make purchasing decisions on a daily basis.
by Brienne Torley is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 Canada License.