Social Master Data Management

The term ”Social CRM” has been around for a while. Like traditional CRM (Customer Relationship Management) is heavily dependent on proper MDM (Master Data Management) we will also see that enterprise wide social CRM will be dependent on a proper social MDM element in order to be a success.

The challenge in social MDM will be that we are not going to replace some data sources for MDM, but we are actually going to add some more sources and handle the integration of these sources with the sources for traditional CRM and MDM and other new sources coming from the cloud.

Customer Master Data sources will expand to embrace:

  • Traditional data entry from field work like a sales representative entering prospect and customer master data as part of Sales Force Automation.
  • Data feed and data integration with external reference data like using a business directory. Such integration will increasingly take place in the cloud and the trend of governments releasing public sector data will add tremendously to this activity.
  • Self registration by prospects and customers via webforms.
  • Social media master data captured during social CRM and probably harvested in more and more structured ways.

Social media master data are found as profiles in services as Facebook mainly for business-to–consumer activities, LinkedIn mainly for business-to-business activities and Twitter somewhere in between. These are only some prominent examples of such services. Where LinkedIn may be dominant for professional use in English speaking countries and countries where English is widely spoken as Scandinavia and the Netherlands other regions are far less penetrated by LinkedIn. For example for German speaking countries the similar network service called Xing is much more crowded. So, when embracing global business you will have to acknowledge the diversity found in social network services.

A good way to integrate all these sources in business processes is using mashup’s. An example will be a mashup for entering customer data. If you are entering a business entity you may want to know:

  • What is already known in internal databases about that entity – either via a centralized MDM hub or throughout disparate databases?
  • Is the visit address correct according to public sector data?
  • How is the business account related to other business entities learned from a business directory?
  • Do we recognize the business contact in social networks – maybe we did have contact before in another relation?

If you are entering a consumer entity you may want to know:

  • Does that person already exist in our internal databases – as an individual and as a household?
  • What do we know about the residence address from public sector data?
  • Can we obtain additional data from phone book directories, nixie lists and what else being available, affordable and legal in the country in question?
  • How do we connect in social media?

Of course privacy is a big issue. Norms vary between countries, so do the legal rules. Norms vary between individuals and by the individuals as a private person and a business contact. Norms vary between industries and from company to company.

If aligning people, processes and technology didn’t matter before, it will when dealing with social master data management.

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