What is Customer Relationship Management?
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) by definition, is an approach to manage a company’s interaction with current and potential customers.
How Social Media Influences CRM
We all know that social media is crucial to remain competitive in many markets. But how can social CRM drive your profits? Social media can be used as a tool to maintain customer relationships and keep patrons closer to your business. Interactions through social media provides the opportunity to reach beyond the scope of your product or service, not only with frequent reminders that you exist (social posts) but also with responses to reviews, check-ins, tagged photos, etc. The engagement you have with customers through social channels, when done correctly, can give your brand more personality with humor, education, or compassion.
Why Good CRM Strategy Is Important
Any response is better than no response, and any type of response is an engagement. When you engage with your customers, social media algorithms boost your page and posts, therefore getting in front of more eyes and leading to increased follower counts, engagement rates, etc.
Notice how we said, “when done correctly” above. While a proper response can greatly improve a customer relationship, a poor response can do quite the opposite. Responses, whether they are comments or messages, must be carefully crafted with the customer’s feelings prioritized. It is important to note that not only will your response be seen by the customer who left the review or comment, but also by all of their social media followers.
As a business owner or manager who may take these critiques personally, it is often beneficial to have a third party handle these instances. As you know, the customer is always right, even when they’re wrong. You must listen to their assessment with an open mind and craft an appropriate response. If the review is more like a rant or deemed false by you, politely present your side of the story and offer a sincere apology and solution to the issue. Your response should help them understand that this was an isolated incident and the next visit would have a better outcome.
Responding to good reviews or comments
Good reviews and recommendations are extremely valuable for your business. The strongest form of advertising is word-of-mouth, and when a peer on Facebook leaves a praising recommendation, the memory is more likely to stick. Responding to good reviews can boost your customer retention, ultimately driving sales. Your engagement with the customer is an opportunity to build upon that initial interaction, adding a personal touch to an already satisfying experience. A repost or post comment from your brand’s account shows the customer that you value their opinion, appreciate their business, and look forward to seeing them again. It is always acceptable to thank your customer for their business and invite them to visit again soon.
Responding to neutral comments
This is the simplest yet most beneficial action your business can take. Oftentimes the user won’t mention the good or bad experience that they had but may check-in to your location or tag a photo featuring your brand. This user may not even be a customer yet, hence the opportunity to gain a new fan. You may respond with a simple, positive emoji or thank the user for tagging your brand, featuring your location, etc.
The Bottom Line
Knowing how to use social media to interact with your customers is a huge step. Interacting with any post or review can help solidify a good experience, mend a poor experience, and build mutual rapport, ultimately driving more transactions.
According to Yelp, users are 33% more likely to upgrade their review if you respond with a personalized message within 24 hours, therefore improving an entire experience with a simple comment or message. This can be the difference between making or breaking another sale.
Leverage bad reviews to improve your business, highlight good reviews to recognize your brand’s strengths, and reap the benefits of good CRM!