Listening Thorugh Social CRM Tools

I spent several years in sales and I remember being introduced to SalesForce CRM for the first time. At the time I thought I was pretty well organized with my spreadsheets, notebook, and sticky notes. Naturally when companies introduce a product like SalesForce it can be met with some resistance by employees because we want to do it the way we’ve always done it. In a lot of cases though, and SalesForce was no different for me, it actually turns out to be quite a beneficial tool. It is an excellent way to track customers, marketing campaigns, prospects, and the list goes on invariably. The impact can be felt across the board.

Now, during this social media boom, a load of Social CRM products for the enterprise have entered the marketplace. We do track our social media metrics to some degree here at The IMF but once again it is really through a spreadsheet method. The surface measurements are there, i.e. Twitter followers, LinkedIn comments, and Blog visits just to name a few. These Social CRM tools though seem to dig deeper and focus more on the customer and prospect interaction. What you see a lot of today is companies starting in on this social media craze, seeing as another way to simply push their message onto the audience, but things like Twitter and Facebook are meant to be interactive. It is at that point that they are the most effective. Social CRM tools can help promote interaction, making it easy to listen to the customer. Instead of just blasting them with messages and advertisements like companies already do through a variety of ways, take a step back and listen. Consumers will tell you what they want; it’s your job to pay attention.

How is your company tracking its social media impact? Have you invested in a social media CRM tool and has it been effective?