How to Collaborate With the Customer for Social CRM

We know the new social customers expect to be heard — and their concerns acted upon. Even better, with Social CRM, you can collaborate with the customer to improve the experience. Some companies are known for their ability to listen and react to customer feedback. When these companies can demonstrate that to the customer, they likely have a customer for life.

Some companies have specifically developed programs to solicit customer ideas and opinions online, because customers who feel they have a hand in shaping a product will be more likely to champion and buy it.

For example, Starbucks came under fire in recent years because customers felt that the company wasn’t responsive to their needs. To fix this and demonstrate a real desire to hear from consumers, Starbucks launched My Starbucks Idea.

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The site allows customers to offer their own ideas about how to improve Starbucks products, experiences in the stores, and social involvement. According to the site, Starbucks has implemented over 200 ideas gathered there. In this way, Starbucks opened a channel for the voice of the customer to be heard.

Clearly, almost everyone who took the time to participate on the site was either interested in what Starbucks was doing in their neighborhood or with its products. This was the audience that Starbucks wanted to reach.

The real value to the company is not only the PR factor, but the opportunity to collect vast amounts of data about who these customers are, how they use the products, and what they want to see in the way of improvements. This data would be hard to collect from focus groups or surveys. Think about how you can use this to gather the information you need about your customers.

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