In the age of social media, businesses come directly in contact with their customers over Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, or Instagram hashtags. The way that interaction is handled, or Social Customer Care, can make or break a business. Here’s what you need to know about using social media to promote a better form of social customer service.
Why Is It Important?
Value and Engagement
Providing a quality customer experience can be the sole factor in most industries. You can use different mediums of social media to stand out and increase customer value in various ways. Customers who engage with your company through social channels are likely to spend 20-40% more than those who don’t. 43% of customers view responsive and quick feedback to their questions as the most important thing when visiting a company’s social media page. By providing a great service online, and being proactive in customer support and outreach, customers are more likely to recommend and share the value your business has to offer.
Security and Efficiency
Social customer service delivered over social channels may help reduce the overall cost of your customer support system. 70% of consumers who use social media for customer service are likely to do so again if they are satisfied with their experience, and 71% of customers who experience quick responses on their issues via social media are likely to recommend that brand to others.
Social media platforms also deliver faster avenues to address dissatisfaction and negativity surrounding your brand. A study by El Sevier, an information analytics business, found that many core social media crises were a result of poor customer experiences shared online.
New Business Opportunities
The growing opportunities in social customer support create exciting opportunities for your business. If you can develop strategies for your marketing and customer support teams to deliver responsive, high-quality customer service, you’re more likely to gain a competitive advantage in your market.
Through social channels, you can showcase information about your business – such as your latest products or upcoming updates – that can better impress new customers and help maintain the brand loyalty of your existing customers. When you deliver amazing customer service, people take note and continue doing business when they feel their needs are heard and noted.
Best Practices For Social Customer Care
Monitor Everything Your Brand Touches
Utilizing a variety of monitoring tools can get your brand on top of any touchpoint you experience with a customer. Free tools like Mention and Talkwalker can help get you started, and for more expansive teams, try a tool like Respond. These help with automation and reporting, so you don’t actually need to view your social media feeds all day, and can focus more on quality engagement.
Not every person who mentions your business tags your social profile. It’s important to monitor both tagged and untagged mentions on social media. With Google algorithms sifting through many social media feeds, it’s now easier to keep track of your social media handles, and where your audience comes in contact with your business.
Regularly check who’s been on your radar recently by entering your business name or any abbreviations associated with your company into the search bar on each social media platform. Be proactive in your reputation management to show your commitment and responsiveness to customer issues addressed on your platforms.
Focus On The Best Social Media Platforms
Figure out where your customers are most active and analyze any behaviors or patterns for those platforms. Preparing your teams based on platforms with high activity can significantly boost your customer service work. You could look at places where customers usually reach out to you, such as your blog comments, forums, and message boards. This may vary from business to business, so make sure you know who your target audience is beforehand.
Speak The Language Of The Customer
Your tone of voice and language are important factors to consider while addressing issues in customer support. Depending on your audience and the industry you are in, it’s important to display empathy and understanding when communicating over social media, so your customers know you speak their “language.”
Enforce Your Public Image…Online and Offline
Sometimes you may see negative and ugly comments on your feeds. Use social media to find and address customers with complaints. Try to resolve the matters so that the person can remove their own comments themselves, rather than deleting anything outright. When you get down to more finer details of customer complaints, take matters offline or with private messaging. Not every issue can be resolved via social, as you may need to exchange customer information that wouldn’t be fit to post publicly.
Take Advantage of Speed
Customers expect a quick reply through social media. In a survey by The Social Habit, 32% of social media users who contact a brand expect a response within 30 minutes. Responding within 24 hours is a must for any modern business, and any messages that linger any longer than that reflects poorly on a business.
Encourage faster forms of participation and communication from your audience. On any of your social media feeds with high activity, ask questions, share surveys, prompt users to share their own content or start a giveaway. You can quickly cultivate relationships with your most active users and build your customer loyalty.
Social media is not just a platform to share statuses, photos, and videos of what’s happening in the day, but a potential way to interact with customers on a more personal level and create solutions through a form of social customer service. Ultimately, this creates more loyal customers, which are the easiest way to grow your business in the long-term.