Social CRM Rocks

Chris Brogan Social CRM RockstarYou have to admit that we social media types really like to rock out. At the recent Rockstars of Social CRM event hosted by Chris Brogan and produced by Radian6, some of the “rockstars” of CRM were definitely in the house including Frank Eliason of @ComcastCares. What we learned, or I should say, what we were reminded of, is that customer service comes down to basics – connecting with your customers.

But now it’s called “Social CRM” which was defined by the Rock Star Panelists as a return to basics. The philosophy is good relationships = good sales.

This is not a new concept. Back in the days before Sprawlmarts, we had what some lovingly referred to as “The Mom and Pop shops” where the owner actually knew his customers and interacted with them personally. This resulted in customer loyalty and repeat business. My family has owned and operated its own party & novelty store, Ballard’s, for the past 30 years. My father still greets his customers and helps each and every one of them personally – you can’t get that at a big box store anymore.

While we are getting down to basics, the tools in which we use to do so are very different. Rather than that face-to-face interaction you might have received at a Mom and Pop shop, businesses are engaging in the same type of interaction, but using social media tools like Twitter and Facebook to make those connections – no matter where their customers are. It has revolutionized the way in which companies do customer service, and if done right, is extremely powerful. Look at Zappos. They refer to themselves as a customer service company that sells footwear and clothing. Zappos is doing customer service right and leveraging online tools to do so. Any business, large or small can do the same.

What companies do you engage with whom you feel are doing it right? And, more importantly, what is your favorite Rock Band song to rock out to?

Cross-posted from http://www.christine-major.com

Persuasive Picks for the week of 06/21/09

Facebook Marketing for Dummies5 Tips for Optimizing your Facebook Marketing
Facebook’s 200+ million users make it an increasingly attractive place to try some social marketing efforts. Paul Dunay of the Buzz Marketing for Technology blog shares five ways you can optimize those efforts.

The Forgotten Social Media Tool
With so many social networks and platforms to utilize these days, it’s easy to forget the countless bulletin board systems out there that still have incredibly active communities covering limitless niche topics. Robert Quigley brings bulletin boards back into perspective with this post on MediaBullsEye.

How to Use Social Media: An Interview with Lee Aase of Mayo Clinic
Guy Kawasaki shares this interesting interview (via Amex’s Open Forum blog) with Lee Aase of the Mayo Clinic on how they have been utilizing social media.

My Top 10 Sources of Content Inspiration
Being able to generate a continuous stream of content for blog posts comes naturally for some. For others, it can be a torturous process. Duct Tape Marketing’s John Jantsch shares 10 places where he finds inspiration for writing a plethora of great content.

Report: Companies Should Organize For Social Media in a “Hub and Spoke” model
Many companies diving into the social media space are still trying to figure out what department actually “owns” social media. Should it be part of an existing internal group or is a re-organization in order? Forrester’s Jeremiah Owyang shares three different models of company organization that can be found in his latest report.

Persuasive Picks for the week of 06/14/09

Building Your Online Brand: Five Basic Strategies
Diana Huff share five tips for building your brand online. It’s amazing how often many of these common sense strategies get overlooked.

Blogging Is Dying; Twitter Is to Blame
Crayonista, Joseph Jaffe shares an interesting perspective via MPDailyFix.com (cross-posted from JaffeJuice.com) on how Twitter might be causing blogs to fade away.

Search Engine Tools, useful resources
As I’ve mentioned in previous Picks posts, we need to continue to always teach the basics. Barry Hurd does just that by sharing a short list of useful (and free) search engine tools to use when doing keyword research.

15 Things Social Media Can Do for You Today
David Finch believes “We often get so engrossed in the ROI, measurements, and tools of social media that we forget real life examples of how social media can work.” To support that notion he shares 15 ways social media can help change the way you interact online.

Google Asks Common Man “What is a Browser?” Common Man Has No Clue [Video]
Adam Ostrow shares this entertaining “man on the street” video that demonstrates how little the general public knows about basic technology. It teaches a valuable lesson on how difficult it is to get people to adopt new technologies into their lives – something Google is currently facing with trying to get people to adopt the new Chrome browser.

Tom Foremski Takes a Closer Look at the Changing PR Industry

A while ago we wrote a post asking readers what they thought the PR industry could be doing better. I’ll be honest, I was a little dissapointed with the return – only a few readers commented. So I’m hoping now that Tom Foremski – veteran business journalist, author of Silicon Valley Watcher and host of Fridays with Foremski – is asking, more business, tech and marketing industry executives will pay attention and speak up.

Tom regularly writes on business, technology and media – including many posts about what the PR industry is doing – both right and wrong. One of his most recent PR musings, “The New Rules in PR – The Old Model is Dead,” reflects on how “the PR industry has run out of road.” This particular post caught my eye because he talks about social media – “there is no such thing as social media” – and what PR agencies are seeing change as a result.

Tom is turning this post into a series over the next couple of weeks, where he’ll taking a closer look at these changes. He says “I’m particularly interested in the extent of ‘social media’ expertise among the PR agencies. I’ll be looking to see who in the agencies is active in blogging, Twitter, FaceBook, YouTube, etc. Is it the senior people or is it junior staff? How often do they update, how much traffic do they get? What’s the quality of their content?”

So please, clients, prospects, partners, readers, industry colleagues – speak up. Let Tom know your opinion and thoughts on the changing PR industry and whether you think these types of activities are important. Are PR firms delivering good content? Do they understand how and where to promote it?  What do you expect from your agency these days? What’s going well, what’s missing? What keeps you up at night when you think about your own PR campaigns?

I’m sure he’d be happy to hear from you – and smart agencies will heed his findings. I know I’ll be paying close attention.

Persuasive Picks for the week of 06/07/09

Facebook

Coming Soon (tonight!): Facebook Usernames Coming soon really means coming this weekend. Prepare for the mad dash as like-named people around the world vie for their own Facebook “vanity URLs.”

10 steps to stop identity hijackers
Theft of brand identity on social networks is nothing new. There have been numerous accounts of it on Facebook and Twitter alone. In this post on Ragan.com, David Berkowitz shares 10 steps you can take that will help reduce the chance it might happen to your company’s brand(s).

Twitter to roll out ‘Verified Accounts’ this summer
Twitter will be rolling out a new identity verification process to help combat the aforementioned brand hijacking. This post from Leslie Katz, senior editor of CNET’s Crave, gives the lowdown.

Content Marketing Strategy with a Side of Social
As a PR agency that’s been entrenched in social media over the last few years – from training, to messaging and strategy, to digital content production and other tactics – we constantly refer back to the “basics” of how it all fits into our clients’ (and our) overall online marketing strategy. This post on TopRank’s Online Marketing blog falls nicely into that level of thinking.

Five Levels Of Social Media Responses
Continuing on the theme of social media basics, Dave Fleet shares “five levels of approach to online listening and responding” to help gauge how effective you are at true and active online engagement.