Digital Customer vs Social Customer – what got wrong


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I woke up to find a new infographic on Social CRM being tweeted about. Curious, I clicked on it and found myself on’s blog with great hopes since they had featured on Esteban’s blog. And was … disappointed. So I left them a comment … and it went into moderation. And thus I am reproducing my comment here.

I am utterly disappointed in this infographic. I would rather call this a hypegraphic.

How is this an infographic on the “Evolution” of Social CRM? All I can see depicted is how it is different from CRM.

You missed out a crucial aspect about the Social Customer – the communities they form, interact with, and the collective clout (no, not Klout) these communities have over the businesses. How they help each other out.

Irony, no? I guess that’s what GetSatisfaction tries to do as a business, right? Allowing customers to create communities where they would help each others out and thus strong arm the businesses into providing service in the GS communities? And you missed that VERY VERY key aspect.

Social is not just the technology alone. What you have depicted as the Social Customer is actually, merely a Digital Customer, a Customer who wields the Digital Technologies (including the internet and the various paraphernalia on top of it) very well. The Digital Customer does NOT become a Social Customer unless they gang up together to help each other out, and if need be, use their collective voice as a major influence over the businesses.

And you also missed out the part about how the Social Customer wants to co-create, the experiences as well as the products/services.

Social is a behavioral characteristic & Co-Creation is a key aspect of this social behavior of the customer in conjunction with the business.

And PR is going to drive the change? All the best. And right after that you mention everybody in the company does/is responsible for SCRM. Not to forget your own business model. Mixed signals?

The sole section where you do try to chart out the evolution, its about what should be & what is. Nothing about how to go/it got from from the here to the there. BTW, the concept comes from Mitch Lieberman, while the design of the graphic came from Chess Media in a jointly published whitepaper. Since you have used your own graphic, I would presume the credit should go to him predominantly?

Sorry if I came out pretty hard on you, but you are a trusted source and you have an obligation towards yourselves, your customers & the community at large.

I do not know if this comment will be approved or not, but being the social customer myself, I felt obligated to share this with my community and thus I have reproduced it here irrespective of whether my comment gets approved or not.

Please do let me know what you think of the infographic & my views. 🙂

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Prem Kumar Aparanji
SCRM Evangelist @ Cognizant. Additional knowledge in BPM, QA, Innovations, Solutions, Offshoring from previous roles as developer, tester, consultant, manager. Interested in FLOSS, Social Media, Social Networks & Rice Writing. Love SF&F books. Blessed with a loving wife & a curious kid. :)


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