Social CRM: Mining The Real Power of Social Influence Marketing


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The Revolution Is Beginning

There is a growing buzz around the concept of Social CRM and with good cause. CRM and Loyalty Marketing Programs have long demonstrated the power of creating a currency and then segmenting, targeting and rewarding people on the basis of preference and needs. The rise of Social Influence Media has given even more meaning to the potential inherent in the concept of one to one marketing, but thus far it is rare to see real discipline applied to the scientific management of conversations or their integration into CRM initiatives let alone broader corporate marketing efforts.

Integrating Brand Conversations

Integrating Brand conversations into customer database profiles fundamentally enhances and changes the CRM proposition. Traditional measures of brand health such as equity, awareness or loyalty and broader business metrics such as consumption or sales may now be complemented by a measure of Brand Advocacy. In a world of Social CRM it is possible to both ask and answer whether somebody who may be a light user can actually be worth more to a marketer than a heavy user by virtue of his or her Advocacy and the impact this Advocacy may have on the consumption habits of others. This equation is game changing. By better understanding how Brand conversations impact core brand and business metrics, marketers will be able to dramatically rethink their creative and media mixes and to engage and reward the right individuals as never before.

Don’t Just Listen: Tag, Integrate, Measure and Reward

Taking the monitoring of Brand conversations to the next level and integrating them into new or existing customer profiles requires an understanding of the power of the the Streamed and Unstreamed Tagging Process. Streamed Tagging occurs when a customer or prospect chooses to interact with brand content in the online space and shares some basic personal data such as that required to use Facebook Connect. These interactions and personal data are then captured and mapped against Brand conversations that this same individual may be having and integrated into the CRM database for mining and measurement. Unstreamed Tagging represents an enormous opportunity for marketers but is quite labour intensive. It occurs when a prospect or customer is overheard, usually via a Social Media monitoring tool such as Radian6 or trucast and is engaged by the Brand or Community spokesperson. After opening a direct, authentic and relevant conversation with a prospect or customer, the spokesperson can manually tag the individual for follow up or re-engagement later, offer to send them information on the product or service or, with permission, even add them to the database. Unstreamed Tagging is an enormously powerful and appealing tactic to marketer and consumer alike: just think how good you felt the last time someone responded to a comment you made online in a timely and sincere manner. (If you have not had the pleasure as yet, try it. Done well it is truly rewarding.)

Listening, measuring and rewarding the actions of your most valuable prospects and customers in a scientific yet authentic manner is a testament to the power of the coming revolution called Social CRM.

It is indeed an exciting time to be a marketer, a prospect or a customer.

Next week we will explore in greater depth the concept of rewarding prospects and customers and the relationship between Social CRM and the evolution of the the Loyalty program.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Edward Boyd
Ted Boyd is CEO and Partner at digital marketing agency 58Ninety Inc., where he has created interactive marketing strategies and solutions for a variety of Fortune 500 clients. He has 25 years marketing and sales experience, including 16 years in digital marketing. Ted is the founding President of the Interactive Advertising Bureau of Canada and currently sits on the Board of CBC/Radio-Canada and the Audit Bureau of Circulations where serves as chair of its Canadian Digital Advisory Committee.


  1. The streamed and unstreamed tagging process is an interesting one to think about, especially when considering consumer expectations about how they want to interact with a brand in one or the other. Thanks for the Radian6 shout out!

    Katie Morse
    Community Manager

  2. Thanks for the thought on Streamed and Unstreamed tagging Katie…it likely has never been easy to understand the consumer’s expectation as regards how he/she wishes to be communicated to, though Marketers did a fine job for years just telling consumers what to look for and where to look for it.

    Today it is the marketer who is playing catch up and thanks to folks like you and Radian6, our job is made considerably easier!.

    There remains a lot of work and thinking to do yet……


  3. For the missing link between CRM and social CRM I was interested to learn recently of companies such as the Rapleaf beginning to offer a “social CRM data append”.

    Note: I am neither affiliated nor have I even spoken with them yet. But I sure will because this missing link was/is the gaping big question as to whether social CRM might be a separate discipline from CRM or actually integrates into the data warehouse in any meaningful way.

    Of course, there is great responsibility for marketers to use that data responsibly, i.e. for a two-way benefit. Nothing new there for true believers in CRM / CXP.

  4. Hi Akin:

    Many thanks for the suggestion. I will definitely look into the Rapleaf append. Totally agree that it directly speaks to the missing link which we are certainly grappling with in our world.




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