On November 27, I’ll be hosting Social CRM 2013 (Brussels) at BIP. We’ll be hearing how the European Parliament and Telenet have implemented social CRM strategies, and have a presentation from Martin Hill-Wilson, one of Europe’s best thinkers on the topic. Philip Weiss, ZN’s chairman, will also be there to moderate a session on organizational mindset. But what’s it all about? And why should you be there?
Social CRM is often lost in the noise and fanfare that surrounds social media. This is surprising since, for most businesses, it offers much more tangible and measurable benefits than most social media marketing strategies could ever claim.
So what is it, Luke, really?
OK, well, much of the confusion around social CRM exists because it covers a range of strategies, techniques, and perspectives that can be applied differently by different departments, and with different outcomes. What is generally agreed, though, is that it’s about maximizing the benefits to everyone – the company, it’s staff, partners, and customers – of living in a connected society.
In terms of actions, this includes:
- Realigning sales, marketing, and customer service to a single customer view (also called “one agenda”)
- Combining customer data with social media listening data to enhance the customer experience
- Putting a value on the strength of customer relationships
- Enabling customers to support each other using peer-to-peer communities
- Using collaboration to streamline internal communications
- Taking advantage of existing company networks for recruitment
Delivering this kind of radical change isn’t cheap. Unsurprisingly, very few companies have really applied end-to-end social CRM (or “social business”), though some – like IBM and Burberry – claim to have come close.
Then, why bother?
The fact is, while most organizations are focused on signing up their next big customer, the primary benefit that the connected society offers businesses is, ironically, right under their noses. McKinsey estimates that between $900 billion and $1.3 trillion in value could be unlocked through the use of social technologies, most of it within the organization.
But despite this impressive prediction, most large enterprises remain internally secretive, externally dysfunctional and, according to some reports, actively customer averse.
I believe the reason for this is twofold:
- Firstly, the social CRM industry is crowded with technology solutions that offer part solutions to the challenge of social CRM* (none offer an end-to-end solution, as far as I’m aware). Each is different, but each calls itself “social CRM,” so companies are confused.
- The second is a plain fact: there are not enough successful social CRM case studies.
This is where I hope we can make a difference.
At SCRM13, alongside the European Parliament and Telenet, we’re going to be analyzing how large organizations are thinking more about the customer better informed marketing, social customer service, and customer experience analysis. We also have a session on how to use LinkedIn for social CRM and Philip Weiss from ZN will be moderating a discussion on the challenges of implementing culture change within large organizations and shifting mindsets.
I hope you can join us. Register here with discount code ZN10 to get 20% off.
About Luke Brynley-Jones, CEO, Our Social Times
Luke Brynley-Jones is one of the UK’s most experienced social media consultants. In the past 12 years, he has helped brands such as Accenture, YMCA, and Orange to develop effective social media strategies.
He has trained over 4,000 marketing and PR professionals in social media marketing, monitoring, and engagement. He writes the popular social media marketing blog, oursocialtimes.com and hosts social media conferences in the UK, US, and across Europe.