Social media is changing how businesses market to customers. Does that mean you need to have a separate social CRM for your business? Discover the answer here.
Social media continues to grow not just in popularity, but in terms of influence. In fact, it’s already paved a new way when it comes to doing business.
It’s called social commerce. And it’s the act of buying or selling any product or service on a social media platform.
A study done by The Harris Poll revealed that 73% of businesses are engaged in a form of social commerce. And 79% also expressed their intention to keep doing it in the next few years. And Insider Intelligence predicts that social commerce will cater to 97.2 million buyers from the US alone.
That means there’s a huge market and revenue potential on social media..
You need to pay attention to how these social media users are behaving so you’ll know how you can market to them. And the best way to do that is through social CRM (customer relationship management).
In this article, you’ll get to know more about social CRM. Find out why it would benefit your business to treat it differently from your traditional CRM.
What is Social CRM?
Social CRM is the use of social media to communicate and establish a relationship with customers.
While traditional CRM is focused on tracking the buyer’s journey and sales data, social CRM is all about engagement. It’s about managing relationships with your customer base through regular communication and interaction.
But it’s not just about establishing your social media presence.
Rather, it’s more focused on having real and in-depth conversations with customers through social media. Such conversations have to be done in a systematic and structured way so you can monitor how customers react to your brand or business on social media.
While conversations and engagements are harder to track compared to sales data, they hold valuable information about your customer’s buying behaviour. So, engaging and interacting with them will give you a better idea of what they really want and expect from your business.
Through social CRM, you can get several important benefits:
First, it allows you to capture a highly segmented database.
Social media exposes you to a wide market. But it also gives you the ability to identify the markets that you’ll target. Using social CRM will help you identify which market responds well to specific conversations and engagement strategies.
Second, it’s useful for data collection.
Social CRM lets you track and manage every interaction and engagement. That’s how you’ll understand how you can be of better service to your target market.
Third, immediate delivery of customer support becomes possible.
Interaction on social media happens in real-time. That means establishing your presence on social media platforms and interacting with customers regularly will make them feel that you’re always available. They can trust that you’ll attend to their concerns without delay.
Why is Social CRM a Rising Trend?
We have the growing popularity of social media to thank when it comes to the rise of social CRM.
When people started to spend more time on social media, businesses recognised the potential to market to their target market. Businesses sought ways to capture the attention of their audience online. In response, social media platforms began creating apps and features to help businesses.
Now, the growing potential of social commerce meant that doing business on social media is fast becoming saturated and highly competitive. So, how can businesses ensure that they will stand out?
They need to have a complete understanding of their market on social media. And this is where social CRM comes in.
While traditional CRM can help businesses collect data about the buying behaviour of social media users – who are known to be generally fickle-minded – it’s not enough.
It’s easy for a business to be the hot topic on social media anytime – only for its reputation to be destroyed by one post. So, you need to be very careful when you’re interacting with your customers on social media platforms.
Just as it’s easy for you to promote your brand online, it’s as easy for your customers to either promote or destroy your brand.
How can you make sure that the latter won’t happen?
Focus on building an authentic relationship and connection with your target market. And this is only possible if you have a deep understanding of who your market is.
Guess what will help you get to know your market?
Your social CRM.
To be specific, you need a CRM that has the ability to track specific behaviour. And this is something that traditional CRMs do not have.
Fortunately, a lot of social CRMs are now offering integrations with social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
Comparing Social CRM with Traditional CRM
You now know that social CRM is different from traditional CRM. But what’s the key difference?
Basically, traditional CRM focuses on collecting data that can help you improve your business strategies. Social CRM is more concerned with cultivating better relationships with customers using an innovative approach.
Let’s explore what that means.
1 – Primary Function
Traditional CRMs are focused on processes. Through the customer data that it collects, you can set up workflows to help your business function more efficiently and effectively.
Social CRM is different because its focus is on conversations. It uses social media conversations to identify the current activities and needs of the customer so processes and performances can be adjusted accordingly.
2 – Setting Tasks For The Team
Businesses use CRM to determine the tasks that teams should work on to improve the customer’s experience.
But in traditional CRMs, you rely on the quality of the customer data to identify which tasks lead to increased customer satisfaction. You can then determine which team can best deliver the right service to customers.
In social CRM, the quality of the content will determine the roles of different teams, specifically when it comes to interacting with the target audience. That’s how you can provide customers with more sophisticated engagement.
3 – Data Source and Management
When traditional CRMs collect data, it usually comes from the customer’s history. And more data gets added every time your business gets in contact with a customer. This helps you determine what makes your customers come to you. And it’ll help you create the right marketing message to get more customers.
As for social CRMs, the data is collected from the community, specifically the real-time records that the customers create themselves. For example, which posts did they like and engage with the most? These real-time records will help you plan how you can improve your conversions.
4 – Communication Specifics
Communication plays an integral part in the collection of data for CRM purposes.
Traditional CRM communication happens regularly through emails, notifications, and even newsletters. And these usually happen during business hours.
But for social CRM, the schedule is more dynamic. That’s because activities on social networking sites happen at different times.
5 – Level of Interaction
CRM is all about improving the quality of interaction that your business has with customers. And you use the data from CRMs to determine what type of interaction will happen.
With traditional CRMs, you come up with quality content based on the customer’s historical data. That means you’ll typically send the content without expecting immediate feedback. So, the content has to be timeless and evergreen. That’s how your content will make sense to your customers even if they read it at different times.
With social CRM, the interaction is sustained. You want to keep the conversation going so the interest of the customer never wavers.
And you do this by collecting data as you continue your interaction with a customer. Then, you use that data to get new themes that’ll make the conversation more interesting. That’s how you keep the customer interested in the sustained interaction with you.
6 – The End Goal
All data collected and the actions done within the traditional CRM are for the purpose of closing deals. Simply put, the goal is for revenue purposes.
For social CRMs, it’s still for revenue purposes. But the success of the CRM isn’t measured by the closed deals. Rather, it’s through worthwhile interactions that are set up to meet the demands and needs of the customer.
With social CRMs, the goal is to keep the customers happy with their experience with your business so you can turn them into loyal customers.
Do You Need a Separate Social CRM?
Based on the differences between traditional CRM and social CRM, does it mean you should set up a separate social CRM?
A separate social CRM will be costly and it might not give you a return on your investment. Besides, it’s not really clear if there’s a specific CRM meant for social media.
You can still use your current CRM, as long as it has features that’ll allow you to get customer insights on social media. So, get in touch with your CRM service provider to check if you can use your CRM to meet your social CRM needs.
With the way social CRM is rising in popularity, a lot of providers should have added this to their existing CRMs already. You can discuss with your provider what you expect to have for your business’s social CRM so they can discuss the features you can use.
In some cases, you may have to pay more to add these features. But that’ll be more cost-efficient compared to having a separate CRM for social media purposes only.
It’s Time to Get Serious with Social CRM
Social media continues to influence the buying decisions of its user. That means you’ll need to take advantage of it if you want more sales for your business.
But you can only do that if you completely understand your target market on social media.
The good news is that social CRM can help you get the data you need so you can engage with your market on social media better. And chances are, you can use your current CRM for this purpose.
Do you need help setting up your social CRM?
Our Automation Agency Heroes can help. Get in touch with our Concierge Service so we can discuss your current CRM and see how it can improve to include social CRM capabilities.