Lesson 2: Optimize Business Processes
The reason, why many of the CRM implementations failed over the last decade, is that the underlying CRM-related business processes were not re-engineered or optimized for the CRM system.
As a result, social CRM systems became more of a drag on the employees using it. And to force them to use it, many companies resorted to a "carrot and stick" policy to force employees to enter information in the CRM system. Naturally, the word "CRM" quickly became unpopular. This could have been avoided had the underlying business processes been re-engineered or optimized before implementing the social CRM solution.
Lesson 3: Data Quality is Very, Very (and Very) Important
Any information system is only as good as the data in it. We have all heard of the phrase "Garbage in, garbage out" and this aptly describes why some of the CRM implementations failed. Not enough care was taken to ensure data quality.
Quality is critically important for both, transactional and non-transactional data. This is especially true for Social CRM as the volume of data emanating from Social Networks can be huge and as people use multiple accounts & profiles on Social Media channels. It is very important to have a data governance framework and best practices in place before implementing a Social CRM solution.
Lesson 4: Leverage Analytics
Another key lesson we can learn is to leverage analytics. Thanks to their CRM systems, organizations were able to collect a vast amount of data and have a 360-degree view of their customers, but the same data could have been used much more effectively by applying predictive analytics.
Before implementing a Social CRM solution, we should have a clear idea of how we are going to use the information collected and how we can apply advanced analytics not only to analyze the past but also to predict the future consumer behavior and fix problems before they become a crisis.
Lesson 5: Project Ownership and Leadership
In any large and complex project with multiple stakeholders, it is very important to have a clearly identified "owner" and an effective "leader" who will be responsible for the success of the social CRM project.
The absence of "clear" ownership and "effective" leadership is a recipe for disaster. This may sound common sense, but you will be surprised to learn how many organizations attempt to implement CRM solutions without first having in place a project owner and/or effective leader. This is all the more important for Social CRM as multiple stakeholders like Marketing, PR, IT, and Legal are involved. It is very important to clearly highlight roles and responsibilities, procedures and protocols for each involved department/person before implementing a Social CRM solution.