The Power of Social Media Customer Service: Are You Doing Enough?
Social media customer service has caught a lot of traction these days. It’s a one-of-a-kind strategy that wasn’t pushed by the companies but by the consumers. Consumers vehemently wanted the brands to take cognizance of their brand interaction and preferred to do so for more than one reason. We take a look at this new disruption in the world of customer service and try to understand what has led to such an upsurge of this trend.
According to Harvard Business Review, 86% of Fortune 500 companies are on Twitter, 87% are on Facebook and 97% are on LinkedIn. Whether small, medium, or big, all companies have started incorporating social media for branding these days. The whole world is going digital and it’s an obvious strategy to mark your presence in this digital world.
Provide Service Where Your Customers Are
Online product launches, social media posts, company blogs are some of the most common digital strategies used by organizations. They usually position their brands on social media to gain visibility. But they seem to overlook its potential to provide prompt customer service. Instead of using social media just for promotions, they must leverage its potential as a channel for two-way communication between consumers and brands. About 90% of the consumers surveyed by the Q2 2016 Sprout Social Index Report, have interacted with brands on social media and prefer to do so. Hence, it’s clear as glass that consumers want customer service verticals to adopt new-age social media platforms.
Though there are very few organizations who realize this there are also the likes of Domino’s who have gone a step further and introduced service features such as ‘Tweet-to-order’ wherein customers can tweet their orders to Domino’s. Not only will this strategy reduce the time taken to place an order but will also help in getting more business, consequently, as constant order tweets will reinforce the brand and entice customers to order from Domino’s.
It definitely makes sense to provide services on platforms where your customers are most active instead of dragging them to old and conventional methods such as phone and email, website pages, etc.
It’s A Necessity, Not A Choice
Whether you use social media to strike a dialogue with your consumers or not, consumers are going to talk about your brand unabashedly. Therefore, it makes much more sense to communicate with them and gauge their needs and queries. Nowadays, silence on any subject on social media is taken in a bad light, especially, when you are liable to answer. Hence, providing social media customer service is not an option anymore it’s a need and a critical business strategy.
‘Amazon Help’ on Twitter is a great example of social media customer service done right. They have a Twitter handle called ‘Amazon Help’ which acts as a live complaint redressal system on Twitter. Consumers find it incredibly convenient to write a Facebook post or tweet instead of going to the website to register and write a complaint/query or write an elaborate mail for the same.
A Gold Mine Of Data And Consumer Behavior Patterns
By data, we don’t mean extracting it the Facebook way but a deliberate observation of consumer demands, frequent queries and complaints can give you insights about your product/service pain points, consumer needs, and demands and general feedback about your product/service. By keeping a track of these patterns, you can mine deep insights which could be used further to improvise your product and consumer service.
There are many FMCG brands that conduct insight mining just to study the trends for their future references. Imagine having real-time data from so many consumers with little cost and moderation! Taking insights from online consumer behavior is going to be incredibly important as it’ll help you to get an insider view of your consumer’s preferences.
It’s More Than Answering Complaints & Queries
Social media customer service is more than just addressing complaints. It involves a wide array of activities wherein consumers seek information about various features of a product or service or just want to know the value addition quotient. Most of you must be aware of Facebook messenger bots deployed by KAYAK, a fare aggregator, and travel search engine website. KAYAK.com is using Facebook messenger to communicate with their clients and answer their queries.
Bank of America is another such elite name in this list of organizations using Facebook messenger bot. Bank of America has been engaging with its consumers via Facebook messenger to communicate real-time alerts about new products and other financial information.
Social media has changed our lives more than we could have imagined a decade ago and there’s no doubt that it’s going to change it even more. Social media has revolutionized the branding arena. From personification of brands to talking against social issues brands have been sailing in new waters fearlessly. It’s time that they also shift their customer service verticals from the phone, email, a website to social media platforms and keep up with incessantly evolving consumer dynamics.