In the past week or so we covered a few interesting topics with easy to understand visuals (we hope).  We looked at the difference between CRM and Social CRM (for those that are new here CRM = customer relationship management) and also explored the evolution of CRM to Social CRM.  Today I want to talk about a process that Chess Media Group and Mitch Lieberman developed aptly called ARM or; the Action, Reaction, Management, Process.  As quoted in the Guide to Understanding Social CRM:

“The ARM process is a straightforward protocol by which all inbound interactions can be judged, analyzed, responses evaluated, chosen, and implemented.  This is not about automation yet as each business will need to decide which segments require human evaluation.  It breaks down the essential elements into discrete components, and allows a business to evaluate each component first in isolation, then together as part of the whole (first decentralized, then centralized).”

The process might look a bit different for your organization but it should guide you in the right direction in going from “what was said” to an “action.”

Let’s quickly break down the elements.

What was said or done

This comes from the “customer” in the image but in the whitepaper we explain that this doesn’t have to come from the customer it can pretty much come from anyone.  This piece should be pretty self explanatory.

Where it was said

We’re talking about the specific channel here, was it on a blog, in person, via email, etc.  It’s important to know where “it” was said so that you will know how and where to respond.


Crucial yet difficult to understand.  Essentially this deals with trying to figure out why the person said what they said, this will never be perfect as it deals with emotions.

What I know

This is the data/information piece that asks the organization “what do you know about your customer?”  It’s verified factual data that should not be up to interpretation.  This also includes social data.

Once you have all these pieces in place or at least have an understanding about them then you can move onto the next piece.

Business rules

The rules essentially govern what the response is going to look like.  Every organization will have its own set of business rules that will govern what the next steps should look like.


Finally we are left with “action,” as in, now what?  Now that you have all of this information and you have gone through your business rules what do you do (or not do)?  This can be broken down into two areas, internal or external (and oftentimes both).

Again, we tried to keep this simple as possible and hopefully it makes sense.

I covered this from a very high level, if you want more in depth information on the ARM process and on Social CRM then please download (and share!) our free whitepaper on Understanding Social CRM.