Sword Ciboodle, a provider of CRM software for contact centers, recently released Ciboodle Crowd, a social CRM product allowing agents to communicate with customers via online communities and forums. Sword Ciboodle hopes that Ciboodle Crowd will encourage peer-to-peer problem resolution as well as develop relationships between agents, consumers, and the organization utilizing the product.
Ciboodle Crowd, used in conjunction with Ciboodle One, features a familiar desktop with discussion boards, blogs, and question and answer threads. Although Ciboodle Crowd does give customers the opportunity to answer queries, all discussions and threads are monitored by agents for accuracy. Correct answers can be marked as such by agents. Questions that are not answered in customizable period of time are routed to agents. Ciboodle Crowd also provides easy access to social media, allowing agents to communicate with consumers via Twitter and Facebook.
Interactions between customers within the discussion forums are captured and placed within a customer's profile, viewable by other customers or agents.
Erika Cappaert, customer experience strategist at Sword Ciboodle, asserts that, "[The primary] strength of the Ciboodle Crowd is the strength between the contact center and the community."
In a statement to the press, Chief Executive Officer of Sword Ciboodle, Paul White, said that Ciboodle Crowd's creation came about "in recognition of the fact that traditional customer service offerings do not always fulfill the needs of new social media enthused customers." White attested that "[Sword Ciboodle's] community-based software enables the agent to contribute or add insight to the social customer's experience while, at the same time, customers can collaborate and interact with each other to share experiences and viewpoints."
According to Cappaert, Ciboodle Crowd can leverage any type of analytics, with many customizable settings regarding public or private information."[Ciboodle Crowd is] so flexible," she describes. "It can really look like anything."
Sword Ciboodle's recent partnership with SAS has influenced Ciboodle Crowd in the areas of analytical insight, data modeling, and campaign management, cross-sell and up-sell opportunities, and propensity models. Sword Ciboodle confirmed that it will continue to utilize SAS in creating future social CRM systems.
Cappaert addressed the potential PR risks of Ciboodle Crowd, concluding that unlike other social media platforms, Ciboodle Crowd provides phone numbers, email address, and other customer contact information for each customer. "You do have a lot more at your fingertips," she said, recalling the Nestle debacle in which customers lashed out on Nestle's Facebook page. "This is another way to respond a lot more quickly and effectively."
Cappart explained further, "The way that we look at it, you do have control over things but every organization is going to want to set their own standards how they might want to deal with PR issues.[Standards] will definitely differ [for] the type of organization as well as…we can give some guidance. From our perspective, [Ciboodle Crowd] is something that can give customers more of a voice and can work to benefit [an organization]."
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