Guidance for successful implementation of social CRM

    Social customer relationship management (CRM) is a growing business strategy that uses social media platforms to help in marketing, customer service and sales. CRM solutions focus on the customer as their intent is to provide the best possible client relationship through positive experience and corporate insights.

    CRM platforms help track what customers buy, when and through what channels so agents can provide adequate support and follow-up to clients.


    Gartner's recent "Magic Quadrant for Social CRM" offers businesses an opportunity to optimize how they use the technique. The quadrants - labeled leaders, challengers, niche players and visionaries - identify where certain social CRM vendors stand in the market, which can serve as an ego boost for those included on the chart and a helpful guide for businesses looking for solutions that can meet their specific needs. On the X axis, the quadrant shows completeness of vision. On the Y, ability to execute.


    According to Gartner, the quadrant was created to show the vendors that are financially able to survive in a growing, competitive market. It helps to assess how providers fit in to the big picture of social CRM.


    What should successful CRM applications do?

    According to Gartner's report, social CRM applications should generate participation between the company and customers, prospective customers, partners as well as with the company's own employees. It should not only receive, but also share and distribute data while demonstrating a balance that benefits the companies and their customers.


    Social CRM can help a company get insight, increase sales, lower costs, build trust and much more, according to Gartner. The ideal social CRM should make customers feel more at home and more involved in their own decisions.


    According to Forbes, industry leaders such as Vala Afhsar, chief customer officer at Enterasys, and Paul Greenberg, owner of The 56 Group, are just two of many big names in the social CRM industry worth following.


    How can businesses begin?

    It's difficult for a business to begin its ascent into social CRM, which is why Business 2 Community provided a 10-step checklist for successful social CRM implementation. The list includes assembling an effective team from many departments, making sure all social media accounts are audited and training team members to understand how social CRM can positively affect customer relationships.


    It's essential that executives and employees undergo a conversion to, understanding how social CRM will increase revenue and better the business.



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