Back to the future of CRM?

27th Feb 2012

You know what? It's strange but in few days I've read two really interesting posts written by well-known CRM experts Mark Tamis and Laurence Buchanan about how Social CRM topic maybe is biasing the real-life business strategies, channeling too much interest and money on a small amount of people who maybe are not worth all this efforts. Not the people itself but their weight compared to the whole potential target of customers which show different behaviours...till now.

I don't know why but each time we follow a new paradigm we also need to go sometimes back to the roots of business strategy as to remind which are the dangers correlated to a not well-focused analysis on who are our customers or prospects.

Maybe this behaviour is driven by IT market that, seen a new profitable game, try to push analysts, strategists, consultants and companies to jump on the bandwagon even if this bandwagon is running without a detailed analysis on specific needs of each company and its business.

What Mark and Laurence said, and with which I totally agree, is that every strategy must be driven as usual by a deep examination on the basin of  potential targets with their characteristics. So, using tools like customer journey map you can understand how to smartly use your budget avoiding the waste of your money only on the basis of a hype.

So what? Every word said during the last years on Social CRM and Social Business is useless? Every article written by experts and passionate (like me) on these topics is garbage?

Wait, wait. Keep calm and just think. It's absolutely true that the percentage of people, that prefer to interact with companies (directly or indirectly) through social media during their customer experience, can be relatively low compared to other more traditional modalities. But it's obvious that the adoption of social media is drastically increasing like the respective human behaviourassociated to their usage. So take a look constantly to this phenomenon in order to adjust promptly its budget share and maybe your business model.

Finally, I just want to add some personal considerations:

  • the real revolution must be found on the company awareness that people is getting more and more power through on and off line conversations, which can drastically drive their choices differently compared to company expectations. So listen to them through various conversational touchpoints (their touchpoints not only the ones you made available) and understand deeply who is your natural target and how to approach it
  • all other "social" pillars like the need of a relationship based on transparency, authenticity and a real wish to help customers with their job-to-be-done are still valid and overriding. And, most important, they bring us back to the roots of CRM as a real strategy.

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