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Cloud CRM: Customer Service as Marketing? Think about It.

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November 23, 2011

Cloud CRM: Customer Service as Marketing? Think about It.

By David Sims, TMCnet Contributing Editor

Soffront runs a pretty good blog dealing with cloud CRM issues, and a recent post asked a good question: Have you ever considered customer service as marketing?

No? Read on.

Don’t tell us -- you consider marketing to be more or less glorified advertising. There could be more to it than just print ads, broadcast ads, and direct mail, however.

And just because you have websites, Facebook and Twitter (News - Alert) accounts doesn’t mean you’re using them well. You do white papers? You run a blog? Great. But if you’re just reworking sales literature they’re not doing you much good either.

Soffront officials argue that customer service “may be the most important and most invisible element of your entire marketing strategy.”

They contend that public relations, advertising and spin “will not make-up for a poor customer service experience on the part of your customers.” They’re right, it won’t. Word-of-mouth is what you want, since it’s the most effective marketing tool available to any enterprise -- “and bad word-of-mouth will damage your business,” Soffront officials say, but that’s certainly a lesson painfully learned to those who’ve suffered from it.

Why is customer service so important? As the blog points out, other than the actual performance of your product, customer service is what customers will talk about -- “And if your product is a service, it is the only thing they will talk about.”

Good customer service needs not only the right attitude but excellent customer relationship management (CRM) software to help build and maintain a relationship with your customers and track the quality of service you provide. Soffront officials recommend CRM software capable of maintaining, tracking and improving the quality of your customer service.

Get in touch with them and they’ll show you what they mean. You could be doing yourself a favor.

David Sims is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of David’s articles, please visit his columnist page. He also blogs for TMCnet here.

Edited by Juliana Kenny
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