It's easy to think about Consumer Relationship Management as something very discrete, siloed, that should be managed by its own dedicated department. But, if you look at CRM closely, you'll find out that it's own true nature is tied to the product and service. In fact, the easier it is to access CRM channels for people, the nearer it is to the (product and service) experience.
Thanks to social media, CRM is today everywhere, like air. We'd better say people expect it to be everywhere and it looks absolutely natural to continue a product experience online. No silos or departments are visible or interesting to people who bought your product.
Thanks to the ease of dialogue with brands and to the activity many brands have in place, CRM today is becoming like packaging: something that's absolutely a part of the product and that can build value for / with people who bought or want to buy your product. Actually, CRM already is IN your product, not around it. It's part of an "extended brand experience", made possible by social media.
- Have a listening activity in place, to track and know what people are saying at any time
- Develop a workflow to respond to people: who can respond and when must they discuss the reply with other people before posting it?
- Design CRM for your product: when is it most important? At early phases or later on?
- Build for community: don't think about CRM as support. It can also mean creating a community around some specific characteristics of the product and connecting people
- Let your consumers be a part of your CRM program: allow them to help other, when they want and if they can
- Find out the need before it shows: by listening to conversations, you'll be able to understand some trends even before they come true. This can be a huge asset for your brand
- Spread the love: it's likely there are people who love your product. Show them your love, maybe through random (but well-aimed) acts of kindness. Show people you appreciate: they will be grateful for this and act accordingly
What do you think of the way CRM is evolving? Are you seeing it as an opportunity and acting accordingly?