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Other Ways to Connect? Leveraging Social Media for a Robust Customer Service

social media customer service

Other Ways to Connect? Leveraging Social Media for a Robust Customer Service

Did you know that an average person spends 2 hours and 22 minutes on social media?

Well, for an average person, this sounds alarming. You might want to stand up and take a walk or take a nap to rest those eyes and minds.

But for a business owner like you, this one sounds interesting?

Mainly because 2 hours and 22 minutes is a lot of time, it gives consumers the time to scroll on their feeds, hopefully, land on your brand’s social media account, and ultimately purchase one of your products. (fingers crossed)

There are a lot of possibilities.

But in those 2 hours and 22 minutes, consumers also have a lot of time to post a negative review against your brand that will take things to turn south for you.

In this article, we’re going to discuss the benefits of social media as one of your customer service channels and why you should give it attention and importance.

Let’s get started.

What Is Social Media Customer Service?

It’s simple; it means providing customer service through different social media platforms.

Well, that was easy, right?

Social media does make it easy for brands to interact with consumers. One customer posts a positive review of your product, you reply to it. A customer asks a question regarding your new offer, you answer it. 

But there’s always the other side of the coin.

Negative feedback will always come your way. For eCommerce, you might get complaints about delayed shipments of customers’ purchases, damaged products, and many more. You need to attend to all of these concerns to give your consumers a positive experience.

Just like how you treat your customer service in other channels, you should get your social media customer service right. The role of a social media customer service representative is not just about answering or replying to messages.

It’s about monitoring and curating your brand to have a positive social media presence. To achieve that, you should have a plan to approach social media customer service successfully. 

Here are some practices that could come in handy for your business:

Don’t ignore your customers – they want to be heard

If a customer walks into your physical store, you’d entertain them by asking what they’re looking for or entertain their questions.

It’s the same thing on social media.

In this age where everything seems to be going digital, it’s expected for brands to adapt to the trend and invest in their efforts for social care. Every post that relates to your brand is important. Your social media team must attend to them to make your customers feel heard and valued.

Respond as fast as you can 

 

A survey by The Social Habit found that among the social media users who contact a company through their social media accounts for customer service purposes, 32% expect a response within the first 30 minutes after they get in touch with the brand. To add further to that, 42% of social media users expect a response from the brand within 60 minutes.

You must be thinking, come on, our representatives need to sleep too. They can’t be on the internet 24/7. Surely customers understand that. Right?

According to the same survey by The Social Habit, 57% of social media users expect the same response time they get during normal business hours even when it’s nighttime and on the weekends. 

Whoa. That’s a lot to take in.

We know. But these statistics only show that with the changing times and all the technological advancements, customers’ expectations are also increasing. Companies must learn to use these new trends in customer service as a basis of how they can make a social media strategy that will satisfy all the consumers’ needs.

Know where to settle things – Public vs. Private

 

Some things can’t be simply fixed through a tweet with a 280 words limit. 

Sometimes, there are information or procedures best explained through other channels – a phone call or email. But you have to do it the right way. Don’t just pass the customer to another representative. They will feel that you’re not taking their concerns seriously and will eventually look for other alternative brands.

No, no. You wouldn’t want that.

Instead of making that mistake, you have to assure the customers that transferring them to another channel will make things better. They have to feel that passing them to another representative will make things right and provide them with solutions for their problems.

You have to use the same friendly and empathetic approach in resolving their issues to make them feel that you care for them. 

Tools, tools, tools

 

Let’s face it. Your representatives are not superheroes. Yes, they have their training, but it doesn’t allow them to monitor all of your brand’s social media activities with only a pair of eyes and two hands. 

But with the help of social media tools or software, they can be more efficient. Not superheroes, still representatives, but with higher chances of getting their jobs done right.

Choose the perfect tool for your company – then make the most out of it. Take advantage of these online tools to elevate your customer service on social media platforms.

Why Social Media Is an Important Customer Service Tool for Your Business

 

Now that we’ve discussed what social media customer service means and the different practices that could improve your customer service on this platform, it’s essential to know why you are doing all of these in the first place. 

Why is social media an important channel of customer service? What will you gain from it? Of course, you could just stay in your traditional ways. 

Well, let us give you a simple answer. 

There are 3.8 billion users of social media in the world.

That’s a lot of people. And for your business, that number is not just a number. These are not just people.

For your business, these are potential customers. 3.8 billion social media users mean a lot of exposure.

If you’re thinking straight and want to expand your business’s growth, it’s not even a debate on whether your company should be in the social media space or not.

You should jump into the hype train and be where your customers are. If you’re still not convinced, here are the reasons why social media is an essential tool for your customer service:

Allows you to attend to your customers’ complaints in a more efficient way

 

We’re pretty sure that you’re aware of how big of a role Social media plays in the daily lives of a lot of people. From the minute they wake up, people log in to their social media accounts to check what’s been on the news or trending page.

When they get bored, they pull out their phones to scroll down their feeds.

They have all the time to contact you, but they don’t want you to keep them waiting or, worse, ignore them. If you want to keep your customers and gain their loyalty, take care of them by providing excellent social media customer service.

Helps you to take care of your reputation

 

A 2018 study by a market research company named GlobalWebIndex found that 54% of social browsers go to social media to learn more about products. The study shows that even when these users are not actively posting on their accounts, they are still engaged in brands’ social media accounts and receptive to their products.

Another survey conducted by BrightLocal found that 88% of people trust online reviews posted by their fellow consumers. 

These statistics only show that social media is the preferred place for a lot of consumers to research products. If you’re on this platform, you have more control over your online image. If an issue about your brand comes up, you can address it immediately and assure people that you’re doing everything to fix it and make things right.

Sales, sales, sales

 

According to Bain & Company, customers spend 20% to 40% more on a brand when they take the time to respond and engage with their requests on social media.  

This one speaks for itself. It should convince you to acknowledge the importance of customer service in social media. This should motivate you to put considerable effort into providing excellent social care for your customers.

But the wide reach of the audience also has consequences. 

What happens when you fail to provide excellent customer service on social media?

First, they stop supporting your business

 

This is one of the worst nightmares of business owners. If a customer decides to stop buying from you slowly, there’s a high possibility that you will lose them if the poor customer service continues. You don’t want that to happen, and sometimes, you wish that this situation would stay just a nightmare.

But it can happen in real life. 30% of consumers are bound to go to a competitor if a brand fails to respond. Well, this is a big blow to your business. Certainly, it couldn’t get any worse than that. Right?

Second, they tell the whole world about their bad experience. Well, not the whole world, but you know what we mean

 

Oh, man. Your first nightmare could get worse. How? That one customer can influence a lot of people. And it only takes a few seconds for them to post publicly about their experience. 

A survey by Dimensional Research found that 45% of consumers take their lousy customer service experiences to social media. Gone are the days when word-of-mouth advertising is about getting brand recommendations from your mother, or your brother, or your closest friend. Today, consumers turn to online reviews to help them decide if they will go through with their purchases. 

This is why it’s essential to manage your social media presence properly. 

If one question is left ignored, it could lead to the loss of that specific customer.

One complaint is left unresolved; it could lead to the loss of a significant number of potential customers;

If a bad review is posted about your company, we think you know where this one leads.

It leads here – your online reputation is ruined

 

WAIT. But you can always rebuild it, right?

Of course. But it will take a lot of effort. It will take a consistent series of positive customer experiences for you to get back on track. 

So here’s the thing. Why not just focus on improving your customer service in social media instead of dwelling on these worst-case scenarios?

Social Media is a two-way street

 

Businesses use social media to promote their products or services. It’s a great platform as it can reach a vast number of audiences. But what most companies forget is that in social media, it should always be; give and take.

Customers treat social media as a way to communicate with their favorite brands. Social media is an important tool for your customer service because it allows you to listen to your customers. It’s as simple as that. When you listen to them, you build a personal connection with them.

With the highly competitive market landscape, you need all the connections you can get from your customers to encourage them to stay loyal to your business. 

Talk to them. 

Listen to them. 

Engage with them. 

By doing this, you’ll grow a huge customer base for your business. 

Start on taking your customer service in social media to greater heights.

 

Roland Francis Dacillo
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