Client-tracking techniques moving from CRM to CMR

Consumers have become more engaged with the brands they are most passionate about with help from social media.

Consumers have become more engaged with the brands they are most passionate about with help from social media.

New customer relationship management (CRM) technology is making it possible for PR pros to gain insight into the identity of their most enthusiastic customers.

JuicemetrIQs, a Web-based CRM system from Juice Media Worldwide, helps companies build customer profiles from multiple sources, and track and analyze activity across blogs, text messaging, online video, and other marketing platforms.

"Too often these channels are distributed so the customer gets mixed messages," says Rick Enrico, Juice Media president and CEO. "All of these new channels need to be integrated into one platform so they're all managed."

The result, he adds, is optimization of each interaction with customers and an ability to reach them in any way they get information.

"Future systems must fuel individualized, meaningful, and automated communications that benefit the customer on a superior and personal level," writes Enrico in an e-mail. "CRM 2.0 is about the collaborative customer experience."

Young people, more than any other group, hopscotch across Web sites and platforms, making it critical for brands to keep up.

"Young people want to be in control, and now they can be," says Alan Rambam, SVP and senior partner for the Next Great Thing (NGT) youth marketing division of Fleishman-Hillard. "They want to feel their voice is heard, that it has some impact on the brand."

Rambam sees a shift from CRM to CMR, customer managed relationships. NGT has worked with some clients to create systems of online ambassadors, brand loyalists who actively take part in events and will offer feedback. Ambassadors are screened and their efforts to promote the brand can be tracked. Ultimately, those who buy the products and talk about your brand are the ones with whom you want to keep a good relationship.

"Millions of people are making videos for brands just because they want to," says Rambam. "We're just galvanizing that."

Key points:

Enhance the customer relations function by using it to track social media activity

Gathering information on consumers loyal to the brand helps to target marketing and other efforts

Customers get information in many ways, so brands must have tracking capabilities across a number of platforms

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