Published on septiembre 12th, 2009 | by admin0
The Next Evolution in Sales & Customer Service: Twitter in CRM.
Early this week Salesforce.com announced that they have added Twitter functionality to the latest iteration of their product, Service Cloud 2. This is intriguing news for enterprises and represents some forward thinking by the Salesforce team. Enterprises have been dabbling with Twitter for the last couple of years but it’s been hit or miss as far as creating a scenario of collaboration between the enterprise and the customer.
This move by Salesforce.com is an exciting step toward a more holistic relationship between salesperson and customer/prospect.
This makes sense. After all, sales is often a relationship game. If the prospect has a rapport with the salesperson they are going to be more likely to choose that product over one from a competitor.
Twitter is all about connections and building relationships. I’m not a salesperson but I can tell you firsthand how much of a difference Twitter has made for me when I go to networking events or conferences and have people say, “I follow you on Twitter,” and boom! Instantly we have a stronger connection than if I had to get to know them from scratch.
I like that they follow me and like that they care about what I’m saying (even if I don’t really know that may be true). The reverse is true as well. Those relationships continue on Twitter after the conference. I pay more attention to that person’s tweets and vice versa. I am more likely to buy or recommend their products or services. The relationship has been formed and extended through the power of social media.
The new features in Salesforce.com allow reps to monitor conversations, respond to customer complaints on Twitter (by easily logging support requests) and to respond directly to customers through the social media service.
To me this move by Salesforce.com demonstrates a crucial step for B2B social media communications. It legitimizes the idea that social media is not just for kids, and not just for sharing silly videos or playing games. It puts social media in the center of the sales cycle, something that will make executives sit up and take notice. It takes the idea of using new media technologies beyond the realms of PR and marketing and takes advantage of the true power of social media — the building and nurturing of relationships.
Suddenly security and Web teams at corporations won’t be able to say that social media is just a way to waste time. Their resistance to new media technologies will have to give way as C-level executives see the power that the tools bring to the sales team and the bottom line. No longer is social media just a marketing trend or means of personal connection. Now it’s a way to build the pipeline and truly grow revenue.
It seems like a small thing but integration along these lines is just the first step toward drastically changing the way that we communicate with the world at large. Email is no longer the end all be all. It’s a small part of a much much larger system to bring people together.