Based on recent research 79% of companies use social networks to reach and engage their customers, 18% do not and 3% don’t know! IBM institute Business Values
Many consider Social CRM to be the next venture for companies wanting to get closer to their customers and many businesses have enthusiastically embraced social media and created virtual communities within them.
The challenge for marketers is learning how to adapt for each channel and not use ‘a one size fits all’ approach. As the saying goes the ‘Customer is king’ and they talk about brands and experiences through social channels every day, which potential future customers can use as a reference point or as part of the purchasing research.
Marketers need to accept this and understand what their customers are posting. Responding to every post, comment, tag, tweet is just not possible, but being able to understand who is saying what can help. For example, by taking a feed from social media platforms into your Single Customer View allows you to gauge the sentiment of followers, the number of posts they make etc and how this relates to their purchase behaviour. This information can provide valuable insight for customer service teams if they know a customer is making negative or positive posts about their brand and help them provide appropriate and timely intervention.
In addition, the implementation of service bots combined with APIs into social networking sites can help quickly steer customers to key areas and answer their questions so customers stay engaged and move through the sales funnel.
Early corporate adopters into social media have seen a growing loyal fan bases who convert into purchasers. A new feature on Snapchat has effectively given some organisations, notably CNN, MTV, ESPN and many more, direct access to Snapchats entire active user database via ‘Snapchat Discover’, allowing them to push through daily content to its users in real time, thus frequently engaging with a very wide audience with real time events.
More established social media platforms notably Facebook, allow you to upload your own targeted lists of email addresses from your database to reach and engage customers. This becomes even more powerful when you mix Facebook’s Audience Manager with your own segmented first party data as it vastly improves your ability to target particular segments of your database.
As we know when combined with great creative execution it engages customers which can in turn create the so called ‘viral effect’ which expands your reach beyond that of any other marketing channel!
Recent viral tweet by KFC, creating a parody or a recent Donald Trump tweet but softly marketing their alleged superior product vs their competitor
All of this activity is in digital channels such as Facebook offers users a wealth of insight as to who is engaging and their wider influencer scores and reach. These social metrics can then be reviewed alongside the more traditional measures such as opens and clicks and, ultimately, the impact on visits and sales!
In Summary, the benefits of Social CRM are vast, but you still need to segment and target to get the best results. Too often we see the traditional mass market tactics being employed in social channels and no surprise the engagement levels are lack lustre.
A few things to consider about social media integration:
Social media users aren’t necessary your transacting customers
Not all social media platforms provide the same level of analytical data or data feeds
Privacy policies limit the amount of personal data you can obtain on a customer
Not all customers are on social media, customers receive content through various channels
At the discretion of the social media platform, you cannot incentivise sharing or forwarding posts as this negates the user experience
If you would like to find out how Acteol integrates with social media platforms to track and measure customer activity more, why not get in touch for a chat.