Posted by Satesh Kumar
December 19th, 2012

“By 2015, 15 percent of organizations will have added social media data about their customers to the customer master data attributes they manage in their MDM systems” – Gartner

In my previous post on Collaborative Data Management we analyzed how data governance, quality and Master Data Management (MDM) can be leveraged to bring about a coherent data conscious environment within an organization. But is data that can provide business insights present within organization boundaries alone? Well with the explosion of Social Media the answer is a big ‘NO’.

As a known fact, traditionally the customer buying pattern was analyzed from data gathered from in-house systems and leveraged for selling opportunities. The information that these systems provided are essentially what the customers wanted to provide, in other words the intelligence was limited to the data collected at the Point of Sales. With Social MDM in place the whole approach changes. Following are the recommended action points as to how organizations need to go about with their Social MDM strategy:

  • Determine Attributes: Strategize on potential application of different Social Media and identify new attributes
  • Integrate Attributes: Linking MDM within Enterprise and Identity on Social Media followed by Enhancing the ‘Golden Copy of Customer Data
  • Build Social Intelligence: Take enterprise to the customer on Social Media

Determine Attributes:Strategize on potential application of different Social Media and identify new attributes

Different social media offers wealth of information on customers; the principle idea is to identify the right social platform and the relevant attributes that are to be associated with the customer master data:

Integrate Attributes: Linking MDM within Enterprise and Identity on Social Media followed by Enhancing the ‘Golden Copy of Customer Data

While creating Master Data within a company’s premise is in itself a challenge, creating a ‘Golden Copy’ of data by collating information across different social media is a daunting task.

Gathering the information on social profiles could be done either by asking customers to provide their social profile information or using a social media app; eBay for instance has built a Facebook app that collects social profile details (attributes) of a user. Given below is a snapshot of details collected by the eBay Facebook app:

Now that the different attributes from customer’s Social profile is available, one could use a Social MDM product for reconciling and enriching customer MDM. Informatica MDM for instance provides connectivity between Facebook apps and Enterprise MDM. The identity resolution process pretty much adheres to the processes used to create enterprise MDM – with identifiers such as Name (first, last), email, telephone, address used to identify the customer entity across social media. A snapshot of how the golden copy of data – from Social Media (Facebook) and within the enterprise (Legacy, SAP, Admin) will look is represented below:

Build Social Intelligence – Take enterprise to the customer on Social Media

Once this integrated Master Data is available, it facilitates a wide range of innovative service offerings by bringing the enterprise data to the customer’s social network. Consider the below information from eBay’s Facebook app installed by a user on his profile that links eBay’s enterprise data of the user with his social data using Social MDM. Recommended products for purchase (Products for You) are sourced from customer’s past buying activity within enterprise and Gifts for Friends and Gift Suggestions are sourced from Social Media– linked using Social MDM.

As seen through this blog Social Media MDM opens up whole new marketing and sales opportunities, few of which are:

  • Discounts based on upcoming birthdays, events, family offers (Family tree app on Facebook)
  • Identify advocates of, threats of product/service and the influence – aids in market penetration and early fixing of damage (if any)
  • Effective way of product/service promotion as opposed to email, SMS or promotional calls
  • Team offers on project completion, anniversary (app in LinkedIn)
  • Understanding customer sentiments on products, buying experience(Twitter)
  • Establish a platform for Social CRM

With Social MDM the whole concept of target marketing is now undergoing a change into personalized marketing – being a part of customer’s day-to-day activities, fostering buying decisions based on their social setup and relationships.

Thanks for reading.  Would you agree upon if your social profile is being used for promotions and advertisements? Thoughts would be appreciated!

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