The Competitive advantage of a Social CRM

Successful businesses are always looking for an edge against their competition. After all, as Thomas Freidman has told us the world is flat, so it isn’t unusual for Asian and European companies to compete for business in the United States. Traditional e-commerce efforts that push or pull traffic to a corporate website have proven to be the vehicle that has leveled the playing field for small / foreign businesses.  However, innovative companies are finding a way to gain an advantage in this already intensely competitive landscape with socially appended data. Stated otherwise – they are evolving their CRM into a Social CRM

Take for example LinkedIn – the most widely used social media outlet for professional purposes. A fully populated LinkedIn profile has the following data on an individual:

  • Picture
  • Location
  • Accurate Position
  • Alma Mater
  • Number of Connections
  • Alternate E-mail Address
  • Phone Number
  • Twitter Handle
  • Work History
  • Groups and Associations
  • Interests
  • Honors and Awards
  • Skills and Expertise
  • Birthdate
  • Marital Status

If I were simply preparing for a meeting – this data would give me a much better perspective and holistic view of my prospect.  I would understand how long she has been in her current position and where else they she has worked to ascertain if she has used my or my competitor’s product.  I would also know if we have any mutual connections or similar interest, honors, or associations to reference.  Lastly, I would know if my prospect asked or answered any questions on LinkedIn that related to my service.

However, the true power of social data is the strength it has en masse.  A CRM that has been appended with social data empowers businesses with additional contact information such as a twitter handle, cell phone number, and alternate e-mail address. These methods of contact are used mush less frequently for professional purposes and therefore more productive.

Imagine the power of segmenting your current CRM database by interests, groups, skills, or alma maters that would be uniquely interested in your service. What impact would wishing your customers and prospects a happy birthday or anniversary have toward brand awareness? What better prospect is there than one that has already used your product? Social data can give you that insight.

When product is commoditized and you can’t get above the noise of traditional e-commerce, Social CRM is becoming a true competitive advantage looking to gain an edge.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: