Jeremy Epstein is VP/Marketing and Social Navigator at Sprinklr.
Sprinklr enables large companies to be Social at scale (Social@Scale)
The Altimeter Group calls Sprinklr “the most capable” Social Media Management System to serve the needs of large organizations. The company is the SaaS platform of choice for over 120 global brands including Cisco, Dell, Virgin America, Hearst, and DuPont.
Full disclosure: I'm VP/Marketing @Sprinklr.
Let’s leave aside the natural question that pops into most people's minds about how accurate and credible a vendor-sponsored survey with a small sample size can actually be and just go to the key point: Josh’s argument is symptomatic of an incorrect worldview about the nature of social, its impact on business, and how brands need to adapt.
Josh is arguing that DEDICATED marketing point solutions can't help customer care teams and, by extension, dedicated customer care social solutions can't help marketing teams. He's 100% right about that.
However, by suggesting that marketing and customer care should continue to exist in silos, he is pushing brands into a dangerous position and setting up a false choice for the market.
Josh is reinforcing the exact problem that makes people hate interacting with customer care so much to begin with: disparate parts of the business don’t know what on earth is going on anywhere except right in front of them - and the customer can tell.
If we've learned anything from social, it's that customers that have bad experiences choose to amplify them at massive scale. They don't think about their experience with customer service or marketing, they think about the experience with the entire brand overall, regardless of the touchpoint.
Think about your own experiences. When you contact customer care, do you expect the enterprise to know who you are, your every purchase, and your every inquiry? Of course you do.
And, if you are engaging with a marketing team around a new product promotion, would you appreciate it if they knew that last week you had a customer care issue? Of course you would.
In other words, is it important to you when you are the customer (and to your customers when you serve them) to be viewed as one person by the entire brand, regardless of the touchpoint where you choose to engage - marketing, customer care, HR, PR, etc?
Point solutions with a view to serving the metrics and standardization of just one function fail to care at all about the experiences that a customer has when they are in someone else's silo. The door is left wide open for lousy customer experience. This is something none of us can afford in the age of the empowered and connected customer.
With all of that said, we’d still be stuck with this problem if the market hadn’t matured over the last few years. Thankfully it has.
Making a choice between point solutions is a waste of time. Why not just choose an integrated social infrastructure that serves the social best practices of every business function and doesn't reinforce existing business silos?
Without that, the customer care team doesn't have the context they desperately need to serve the customer. Point solutions alone fail to deliver that context and in the age of social that’s just not acceptable.
However, there is one thing on which Josh and I can definitely agree.
We both appreciate the advertisements of National Car Rental, an approach he used quite well in his introduction.
I've used that myself a few times.
No doubt on this one. As Peter Drucker said, "Culture eats strategy for breakfast." Thanks for the link. That was a good report.
@CL a fair point of feedback indeed. Another lesson in how importatn communication is. Thank you for clarifying. Yes, we are talking about a management platform.