When we first launched social features in Zoho CRM in November 2013, our goal was to give our customers a place to listen to what people were saying about their business.

The social tab enabled businesses to perform all the actions they could from a social media tool, such as listening and responding to Tweets and Facebook page posts, monitoring search keywords and posting new content to Facebook and Twitter. In addition, they could also add CRM leads and contacts directly from listening streams.

In a nutshell, the social tab helped businesses using Zoho CRM get socially active without having to step outside their CRM.

But we didn’t want to stop there.

We wanted to take things to a whole new level by helping customers do powerful stuff that they couldn’t do with a standalone social media tool, stuff that brought the CRM context to social and the social context to CRM.

So we went back to the CRM drawing board and first wrote out this working definition of social selling:

“Social selling is about building relationships by combining inputs from social media into your interactions and making them richer.”

We realized we needed to give our customers the social media features they could use to build relationships and not just pipelines. With that goal in mind, we put on our thinking caps and set out to re-imagine our social features. The result is the following set of features which are now live in your CRM:

Listening streams automatically segregated for you: Your built-in social tab combines social media listening with the intelligence of Zoho CRM to segregate incoming social posts into these categories:

  • Customers
  • Potentials
  • Leads / Contacts
  • Unknowns

So whenever a new tweet conversation or Facebook post addressed to you shows up, it takes only one glance at the dashboard to tell whether it’s from an existing customer, a potential, a lead or contact.

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And if a post is not from one of those categories, you’ll find it in the “unknowns” column so that you decide what action you want to take. As usual, social actions such as retweets, likes and direct messages are all possible from the social tab.

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Single-click lead generation:  With the new social interface, lead-generation is simple because it only takes you a single click to convert an “unknown” into a lead. The great thing about this feature is that it also works from keyword search. So, if you’re listening to live-tweets about an event, you can directly generate leads from the search feed and follow up on those later.

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A social feed for every lead:  What if you need more CRM info about the author of a social post and your interactions with her?

We made it easy, so you don’t have to go hunting for details. All you need to do is click on the post and all relevant information from your CRM will show up right there. That means you’ll see all the interactions anyone in your company has had with the person who wrote the post.

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Context for conversations: Okay, this isn’t really a new feature, but it’s worth mentioning here because it completes the picture as far as contextual social info is concerned.

While the social feed mentioned above gives you a complete view of CRM info about a social post, this feature gives you context from the social perspective whenever you look up a contact profile. You can see the most recent social conversations that your business has had with a contact on her profile view page. Once again, this eliminates the need for you to switch back and forth between tabs since the relevant social conversations are available right here, for your reference.

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Content-sharing: The kind of content you share plays an important role in reflecting trust and credibility, and these are key components for relationship building.

With this in mind, we’ve made it much easier for you to share content from the new social interface. Also, while you use the publish feature, we ensure that the rest of the live-streams are still live and view-able in the same tab. Checking out your own live Facebook and Twitter posts is simpler too now, with just one click on the “building” icon also located in the left hand-side bar.

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With inputs for focused listening and powerful conversations, the new social features are designed to help your sales team build strong relationships with your customers and prospects. Do try them out and tell us what you think. We’d love to hear about your social selling experience.

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  1. Diego

    Meera, I think that Zoho Social is fantastic but I don´t know how I can obtein the email of my prospect of my RRSS. Do you know how I can do this ?