Five Tips for a Successful Social Media CRM Strategy

For Real Results, Don’t Forget Your CRM!

 

There is endless chatter about social media in the dealer marketing world these days and why wouldn’t there be? Over 500 million people are using one of the “Big 4”—Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, and Linked-In. In addition, of the two-thirds of Americans who now visit social networking sites, 43 percent visit them more than once a day. Significantly for the retail industry, and automotive dealers in particular, 68 percent have become a fan or friend of a product, service, company, or group on a social networking site. Without a doubt, dealers need to harness the power of social media. Most of the social media chatter and discussion, however, currently revolves around dealership Facebook pages and Twitter accounts, while almost none of it focuses on one of the most powerful tools in a dealership’s arsenal…the CRM/ILM system.

 

Yes, tapping social networking can be a little overwhelming and tricky, but if you utilize your CRM and ILM systems, along with some key best practices, you can eliminate much of the confusion and create a straightforward strategy. For example, knowing whether or not a customer belongs to a social site is helpful (and you can do that directly through your CRM/ILM system, with the right plug-ins); but seeing how many friends or contacts that customer has on each site gives you a powerful advantage. Based on the user privacy settings, you can actually go directly from the CRM tool to a customer’s social media page to gain even more information about that customer.

 

Imagine the selling opportunity with a customer that has over 200 contacts on Facebook alone. If this “influencer” has a good experience at your dealership, then recommends your dealership to his/her friends via a post on the wall, and those 200 contacts have their own friends, the customer’s experience becomes viral across all of those contacts. Your marketing efforts can grow exponentially by targeting just one prospect and then spreading the positive message by word of mouth or, in this case, “text of mouth”! And this is just one opportunity you can leverage combining the right CRM system and plug-ins, as well as the following simple best practices:

 

1.       Enhance your CRM data to include social media information for each of your customers and prospects.

 

2.       Use the enhanced data to create outbound CRM/ILM-based campaigns that target social network influencers in your database.

 

3.       Target your social media campaigns. Don’t just email the same content asking everyone to be your friend, make the request relevant to the recipient.

 

4.       Train your store to review the social media data (recent posts, friends, etc.), in addition to the customer’s history of interactions with your store, before they interact with the customer.

 

5.       Measure, measure, measure!

 

Bottom line: just as you should never forget your CRM and ILM systems when planning your email and direct mail campaigns, be sure to include these critical systems as you map out your social media plan…it is a lot easier than you think, just try it!

 

Mike Martinez is chief marketing officer at izmocars.com. For more information about izmocars and iCRM social media plug-ins, go to www.izmocars.com/solutions/icrm.html.

 

 

 

 

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