How important is CRM to your business?

CRM (Customer Relationship Management) is a rapidly growing area of interest within many business.  But how important is CRM to your business in the larger scheme of things.

I’ve just finished delivering a module at the University of Warwick on the subject of CRM, to the full time MSc course, which has both been enjoyable and a learning curve.  Whilst teaching students that have an understanding regards the application of CRM they have lots of questions that do make you think.

CRM has become a tool that sits at the centre of any business, as the need increases to create a Single Customer View that’s reflected across the whole organisation to enable a business to deliver;

  • Directed and highly targeted marketing
  • First Class support
  • Develop and sell products to the correct markets
  • Ensure that clients are profitable

and the list goes on.

The thought provoking questions come around the area of social CRM and reputation monitoring with regards to your social media profile.   How do you as a business begin to use social media and link to the customer relationship?

One student raised the issue of a users social media profile and the potential use of such things to categorise a person into a specific segment by whats being said and posted and how this could be used to gain an advantage in situations such as negotiation of contracts.

The following discussion reflected the argument that this may very well be happening already, and how much of what you say or do should be accessible.  The idea of creating fake profiles that present a different image could be an option, but in reality would that then present an untrue picture that is soon shown to be incorrect once you engage with a person / business.

The end point really is, make sure that as a person or a business you really understand how powerful social media and social CRM can be and ensure that what is shared, videoed, written, recorded and photographed is always presenting a non-threatening picture of you and your business to your current and potential customers.

If you live a highly volatile lifestyle then be prepared as someone out there will quickly use it to their advantage.  If you need an example look at the story in the UK regards the PCC Youth Commissioner who has now resigned for things posted to twitter previously under her name.

Always think before you speak.

Posted in CRM