“A brand is no longer what we tell the consumer it is, it is what the consumers tell each other it is.”
For years, corporations have been focusing on building and enhancing relationship with their end-customers. ‘Customer centric organizations’ was the buzz word and millions of dollars were spent on connecting with customers on an emotional level. However, what they did not focus on were the relationships of customers with each other.. In an increasingly networked world, consumers not only impact each other more than ever, but our ability to understand and leverage that process grows as well. Influence isn’t just having a lot of followers, but it’s driven mainly by expertise and credibility on subject matter and the relationship between the influencer and his or her followers.
Having a ‘social strategy’ can no longer be about maintaining a Twitter account and counting Facebook likes. The social strategy of tomorrow includes understanding the customer-to-customer (C2C) relationship, collecting the right data on it and influencing the right people.
Spotting this ‘social value‘ allows you to acquire the best customers, retain the ones worth more than you realize, and learn what approaches will generate extra dollars as you influence the influencers. The savvy CRM of tomorrow includes an understanding of how promotions do and do not impact C2C. It will include a data-driven approach to piggy-backing on the right relationships in a virtuous circle where customers become closer while embracing your products.
According to a McKinsey Study, marketing-inspired word-of-mouth generates more than twice the sales of paid advertising, and these customers have a 37% higher retention rate.
The science shows that this C2C factor drives between 10 percent and 40 percent of all consumer spending, and that therefore it must be taken seriously. What should you be doing now? Begin collecting the data you need today so that you’re in a position to make it actionable tomorrow. If you don’t know what a Facebook Auth- Token is, you’re behind. If you think that the person who Tweets a lot is your most valuable customer, you’re shooting in the dark.
There are few indicators which are being used by social marketers to identify the potential of these social influencers. The data models and data sciences are gearing up to decipher these for marketers.
1. Customer Influence Value – Customer Influence Value is the NPV of the future profits associates with purchases generated by a customer’s social media influence on other customers and on prospects
2. Customer Knowledge Value – Value attributed to a customer’s knowledge/feedback of a company’s products/services and market potential of unmet needs he help the companies realize.
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