Most organizations already use a customer relationship management (CRM) solution, and they more than likely employ social media strategies to further their marketing efforts. But what if you combined the two with social CRM software – could you improve your company’s reach?
Traditional CRM is all about building and maintaining relationships with your customers; social CRM (SCRM) simply uses social media tools to supplement this goal. By encouraging open dialogue and communications, SCRM software allows you to integrate your social media and marketing strategies to increase customer engagement and provide better service levels.
So how does it work? SCRM can be easily assimilated into existing social media activities, and essentially automates many of the social media tracking functions currently undertaken by staff. Social CRM makes it easier to gain insight into your client base, encouraging the sharing of information between their social media accounts and your database. Activities such as industry keywords tracking, and brand and comment monitoring can all be replaced by social CRM software, which collects all of this information for you.
Start by testing the free trial versions of a few different SCRM options to decide which one has the functionalities that best suit your organizational needs. Once you have a bit of experience, choosing a social CRM software solution with the tools that you need should be relatively simple.
A few things to keep in mind as you begin to experiment with SCRM software:
- SCRM doesn’t replace your CRM, but should be used in conjunction with it. Think of your SCRM as a tool to further enhance customer relationships maintained through traditional CRM functionality. And remember – your customer is still your main focus!
- Engage your customers. Social media is a means to two-way conversations – don’t just use it as another advertising platform. Instead, create meaningful dialogue with your clients to add value.
- Choose carefully from your many SCRM options. Not all social CRM software packages are created equal, so make sure that before you buy, the software you’ve selected has all the functionality that you need.
- Be ready to run! Social media is changing quickly, and SCRM is well poised to change with it. Don’t be afraid to experiment with new functionalities and to push the boundaries of your system. At the moment SCRM in the B2B sector is experiencing tremendous growth, expected to capture 30% of the market by the end of the year.