What led us to Social CRM? Or why should you be serious about #SCRM?


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Though I have been tinkering with or thinking about Social Media/Networing/CRM/Business for more than three to four years now, I never got a complete hang of why I felt it was the right thing to do. I have been reading &/or talking to a lot of others who feel the same and I have managed to collate a few salient points here. This is a very hurried post. So please excuse me for my ‘brevity’. 🙂

A few trends lead to SCRM:

  1. Social media is a communication revolution, especially for its users (customers & employees of an organization)
  • Digital – meaning next to nill cost of production/distribution & no gatekeepers
  • Proactive – articulation & co-creation
  • Networks – explicit & implicit
  • Visible – UGC is visible to all, including ur location thanks to LBS
  • Real-time yet persistent (thanks to falling costs of broadband & memory)
  • Ubiquitous – mobiles & internet of things
  • Customers transformed from being exogenous to value creation to endogenous to it, from a firm’s perspective
  • Since Industrial revolution things progressed so:
    • Supply-Demand economy or Mass production – top brass decided what to produce & limited by availability of raw materials, human resources & supply chain – customer not considered at all – customer a passive receipient
    • Service economy or differentiation – matrix organizations created to enable innovation & thus differentiation – customer needs guessed by secondary means, rarely via direct VOC – customer gets taste of what she can demand for, still passive receipient but post purchase behavior begins to matter – value exchange still happens at single point
    • Behavioral economy or Pull platforms – open collaboration, innovation, co-creation, customer centricity raise their head from obscurity, thanks to a more aware customer enbaled by social media – customer demands, dictates & tests (co-creates) products/services & helps other customers – customer is integral to value creation – value exchange happens at multiple points – customer engagement goes beyond transaction into WOM, co-creation & complaining behavior

    It should always have been about the customer, but thanks to the industrial revolution, it was about the capabilities of the organization rather than the needs of the customer … and this led to transactions being paramount to relationships (how else would you get better capabilities than competition?).

    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. :)


    1. I don’t know whether there ever existed some kind of Prelapsarian state of customer-centric business, pre-industrial revolution. However, it’s fair to say that since the mid 19th century the means for improved production and distribution outgrew the means to communicate with the customer. It seems as if it’s taken an awfully long time to catch up. Now that it has, the possibilities are fascinating. We have to keep in mind that although the technology is now getting there, all of the business books were written in the interim – so we have to learn to engage almost afresh.

      How practices take shape over the next few years, I’m sure will depend to an extent on the foresight and of thought leaders from across both CRM and Social Media backgrounds. CRM even prior to the explosion of the Social Web and the development of sCRM, was championing the need to be collaborative and customer-centric. Meanwhile, the experience and understanding of the behavioral analysis of the Social web, by companies that have approached it from a different angle, will be invaluable in tying these threads together.


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