Data streams from social networking efforts are rapidly growing at many marketer sites. In order to manage and efficiently use this data, marketers will be looking to invest in social CRM systems. According to one industry analyst, a perfect social CRM system doesn’t exist yet but this category become the next new thing in the enterprise market.
Houston Neal, writing for Software Advice, says the need clearly exists. He breaks out current market strategies into 4 main categories. Some of the vendors operating in each of these categories are listed below:
- CRM Vendors with Social Capabilities: Salesforce, Oracle
- Social Platforms: LiveWorld, vovici
- Social Media Monitoring: Nielsen, Buzzlogic
- Social Analytics: Gist, Attensity
Currently, argues Neal, no one vendor offers all of the pieces that a specific marketer needs to appropriately manage and analyze their social media data streams. Part of the problem is that marketers have not yet defined exactly what they want to do with their data. Companies that are looking only to track what is being said about them will likely invest in a social monitoring application. Marketers that want to build a true online community will need to contract with a social platform provider. And those marketers looking to do it all will either have to develop a proprietary system which is expensive and time-consuming or contract with multiple service providers and find a way to make data compatible between vendors.
Look for a slew of services to hit the market this year and next to help businesses manage their social media efforts. Marketers will be investing in these services as they seek to find profitable uses for the social media data.[Source: Neal, Houston. Social CRM doesn’t Exist, But A Need does. Softwareadvice.com. 26 Jan. 2011. Web. 21 Feb. 2011]