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How To Identify A Social CRM Initiative

By Jacob Morgan

Hello ladies! (this is only funny if you have seen the Oldspice commercials, otherwise this is a bit awkward for all of us...) Over the past few weeks you may have seen that the Oldspice man has been responding to comments on youtube, facebook, and twitter by creating individual personalized messages for people essentially creating a type of collaborative relationship between the brand and the customer, but is the Oldspice campaign a social media campaign or a social CRM campaign?

It's a bit hard to tell just by looking at the front end piece of what's going on but based on what I have seen it looks like just a social media campaign. Why? Click here to watch the video.

It seems as though the goal of the Oldspice campaign was to build awareness and visibility,which it did quite well. Since the personalized videos have launched Oldspice has garnered hundreds of thousands of facebook fans and tens of thousands of new twitter followers (and youtube subscribers). However, as far as I can tell the campaign did not move beyond that first level of awareness. I actually had a great chat with Brent Leary about this. Brent and I agreed that a key difference between a social media and a Social CRM campaign is the deeper level of integration. Social media is great for visibility and awareness but taking it further into actual influencing purchase decisions and driving a business result is where Social CRM comes into play.

So if the Oldspice commercial was a social media campaign, what would have been needed in order to consider it a Social CRM campaign?

Customer segmentation

A breakdown of their customers and prospects by variables such as purchasing habits, demographic information, how they use the internet, etc. Something that really shows Oldspice who their customers and prospects are, where they exist online, and what they expect from brand interaction with Oldspice. I'm not sure if Oldspice did this or not but it doesn't look like it (based on the interviews/news pieces I have read)

Integrating/collecting the data (and measurement)

There were thousands of comments directed at Oldspice during the course of their campaign. Oldspice responded to some of those comments but then what? Were these interactions somehow being tracked or recorded in a CRM or database system so that Oldspice can "remember" these conversations and relationships at a later date? Again, this was not apparent from anything I have seen and in an interview with the folks from Oldspice they said they weren't sure if these ads would actually help people purchase more of their product. Does Oldspice even remember who they created videos for or the thousands of commenters are? Measurement is also important, at this point it looks like the key metrics that Oldspice is to measure success are short term such as followers, comments, and size of the network.

Customer strategy

I'm hoping Oldspice has this piece figured out although it's not very clear yet what their customer facing strategy really is. If you recall, SCRM does not replace the need for or the foundation of traditional CRM so without this foundation we can't evolve. Again, we are clearly seeing how Oldspice is changing their customer communication strategies but we need to move beyond just communication. There is a lot that can be said here but I'll leave this to the comment section.

The long term relationship

Now what? Oldspice responded to many people but how is a long term relationships going to be created between the brand and the customers, prospects, or community? It seems as though this was an ephemeral campaign designed for the front line of market awareness but again, what happens now? What does the long term relationship with the customer (or prospects) look like? After July 14th Oldspice abruptly ceased to respond to or interact with anyone. It's unclear where the customer fits into the long-term strategy of Oldspice.

I definitely think Oldspice did a fantastic job of generating awareness but I just didn't see anything that goes beyond that initial step. Social media is like the infantry in battle and Social CRM components are the drop ships, tanks, artillery, and aircraft carriers that make everything else happen.

I think it's important to be able to identify a Social CRM initiative when we see one so that we can have these case studies and stories for other interested companies and practitioners.

What do you think? Was this a social media campaign or a Social CRM campaign and why?


About the Author:
Jacob is the principal of Chess Media Group, a social business consultancy focused on developing Social CRM, Enterprise 2.0, and Social Media strategies for mid and enterprise size organizations. Jacob is also the author of Twittfaced, a social media 101 book for business. Jacob authors a top ranked blog on Social CRM and Enterprise 2.0 and can be found on Twitter @JacobM.
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