Customers Want an Experience Through Your Brand

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There is a belief, and for most rightfully so, that Social CRM is an extension of traditional CRM. With Social CRM you’re adding new technologies and strategies to traditional CRM. As a business, this requires you to move from traditional or social channels to multi-channels, said Paul Greenberg, Principal of The 56 Group, at Zoholics, the Zoho user conference in Burlingame, California.

That makes sense if you’ve been in CRM for many years. But if you describe Social CRM to young practitioners they’ll just refer to it as CRM, said Greenberg. These supposedly “new” methods of social are traditional to them.

Customers are in control

A successful Social CRM or CRM implementation is the process of giving your customers the ability to sculpt the relationship with you where they own and control the relationship, said Greenberg.

You can do that by providing things to the customer that make them remember you well and to respond to the customer when it’s appropriate to respond. Not every engagement or call out requires a response.

Watch the video as Greenberg talks about how the line of American Girl dolls creates an experience for fathers and daughters within the American Girl stores.

Serve customers faster with Social CRM

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The biggest growth area for CRM is in the SMB space, said Marshall Lager, Managing Principal of Third Idea Consulting. At the CRM Evolution Conference in New York City, we spoke about SMBs and CRM and what are the hottest integration points for CRM.

The lack of SMBs using CRM in the past isn’t the fault of hesitation, said Lager, but rather SMBs not being aware of what they can get out of CRM. When SMBs do discover CRM, often through colleagues or just tracking their industry, they utilize it like mad, Lager said.

As for what people are integrating with CRM, Lager said the hot area is social which is the ability to connect the social sphere to your business’ workflow. Social CRM is attractive for its immediacy. The faster you can trigger workflow to customer needs, the better you’re going to serve customers and keep them, Lager said.

Key to social CRM success is simple integration of products and channels

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Integrating CRM with business processes is both a challenge
and an opportunity. Not only are we faced with a proliferation of products, but
also channels. Every day we wake up there is a new social media forum that our
customers can touch us with, said Om Kundu who is on the Editorial Advisory
Board for CRM Journal, and Director of Thought Leadership for ATP Board.

Are you taking advantage of opportunities? How aggressive
are you integrating your CRM with products and channels?

SMBs create new business models with social CRM

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CRM makes sense for optimized marketing and reputation
building, but as SMBs are discovering social CRM, they’re actually creating new
business models, explained Brent Leary, co-founder and partner of CRM Essentials and author of a recent
research paper on SMBs and social CRM.

Leary goes on to explain that we’ve had adhoc examples of
companies using Facebook and Twitter to engage with customers, but now we’re
seeing a shift to make social CRM more strategic to business development. Here
are a couple of examples Leary noted:

Community as extension of
employee base:
SMBs are consciously growing communities allowing the
participants to act as an organic service and sales force.

Extend products and services:
Using feedback from the community, SMBs are pulling in different cloud services
to create new offerings.

Three unique ways to use Social CRM to grow your business

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You’ve got tons of customer data, but often your customers
aren’t talking directly to you. They’re talking to other customers and a lot of
people who aren’t your customers. This mass of unstructured data in the social
sphere (e.g., Twitter, YouTube, Facebook) is a goldmine not just for immediate
feedback, but for a host of unique customer service and product development

At the CRM Evolutions Conference in New York, I spoke with
analyst Ray Wang of


. He offered up three unique ways companies are taking advantage of
Social CRM:

  1. Steal sales from

    – By following your category and your competitors, you can
    discover people in purchase mode you never would have found. This is the best
    time to intercept and introduce yourself into the consideration mix.

  2. New uses for your

    – Videos of people with your product may introduce new ways to use
    your product that you hadn’t considered. Feed this information back into
    product development or new ways to market your product.

  3. Triage a problem before
    it blows up

    – When a customer has a complaint, escalate that problem to
    your company’s contact and action center and close the loop quickly so as to
    solve the problem in real time.

Are you not ready for Social CRM yet? That’s quite alright,
says Wang. While you’re waiting to launch your Social CRM campaign, start collecting
Twitter handles from your users so you can connect their social activity with
your customer database.

3 Easy Steps for Embedding Zoho CRM Web Forms in Facebook Pages

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If you follow our

page, you would have noticed a “Request a Demo” link on the left hand side. Refer to the visual at the right.

This was the result of one of our experiments on how to use Zoho CRM in the social frontier. A Facebook fan page is certainly a great way to engage your prospects. It doesn’t stop there… How do you collect information from these visitors? With Zoho CRM web forms, you can!

Zoho CRM web forms
can come in handy when you want to gather information from your web page visitors. The details are automatically pushed to your CRM account on submission.

Getting the form in your web page takes almost no time. It is as simple as create > edit > save. Take a look at the below presentation. These are the steps that we followed for embedding the ‘Request a Demo’ form in our page.

A very big thank you to Kenji Saegusa, a Zoho CRM fan, who posted this query in our fan page. Your question inspired us to try this out.

If you are using Facebook for marketing, then Zoho CRM web forms can help you capture leads directly from your company’s Facebook page. Try embedding forms in your Facebook pages and tell us about your experience.

And, yes, in case you need a demo of Zoho CRM, you can always fill the form and submit. We’ll get your message!

Learn more about Zoho CRM Web Forms; here are a couple of related links.

Capture Leads from your Google Sites with Zoho CRM Web Forms
Capture Contacts from to Zoho CRM

For more such updates and to share your suggestions, do connect with Zoho CRM on