Do You Need a Social Media Customer Service Plan?
It just couldn’t be any clearer, folks: customer service matters. Customer service matters so much that, according to a recent study by Accenture, American businesses are at liberty to lose nearly $1.6 trillion annually as a result of poor customer care alone.
Yup, you read that right – that’s trillion with a T.
Case in point, there’s quite a bit resting on the success of your customer service program. And ready or not, how your business uses social media as a part of that customer service program is now a determining factor in how well it stands up to the pressure.
With the popularity of social media on the rise for both personal and professional use, it’s actually no longer a question of if your business needs a social media customer service plan, but what you’ll need to know to get started.
Let’s dive in:
Social Platforms as Service Platforms
Like it or not, there’s no denying that social platforms have cemented a place for themselves in the business world.
And while it’s likely that you already have a social media marketing plan in place, there are more benefits to creating corporate profiles than just brand recognition alone.
Not all that dissimilar from traditional channels of customer service like call centers or email, social media platforms are a shiny, new avenue through which your consumer can request help, submit a complaint, and thus form an opinion about your brand. And considering just how powerful customer experience is, on the whole, it’s imperative that your business approach using social media just as it would any other type of customer service.
For example, recent reports indicate that around 150 million people message businesses via Instagram DM every day. Yet most brands only respond to half of the messages they receive online. For those very real customers attempting to find a solution or express a concern online, that’s akin to your representatives just not picking up the phone or deciding not to return to a service email.
Even worse? Sprout Social found that up to 50% of customers would flat-out boycott a brand due to a poor social response. And of that 50%, it’s safe to assume that at least a few will be upset enough to post about their frustrations with your business publicly on social media themselves.
It’s a lot to take in, we know. But the long and short of it all is this: your customers expect the same caliber of service through social media as they do any other service channel, and it’s high time you gave it to them.
Profile Care as Customer Care
Not sure where to start? There are a few easy things you can do to get the ball rolling on your social media customer service plan:
- Create a Voice, And Use It: Your social profiles are representative of your brand in the same way your service agents are. When crafting the look and feel of your social media, take the time to also establish a tone of voice, response time for each channel, answers to frequently asked questions, and protocols for what to do when things get out of hand.
- Manage Your Messages: Whether it be via a dedicated employee or with the help of a chatbot, always respond to your messages. And quickly, at that.
- Be Proactive: Don’t wait for users to reach out to you. Responding to mentions, tags, and other forms of indirect social media contact with your customers can build a rapport, and as a result, brand loyalty.
- Track Your Interactions: Customers expect a seamless experience between channels and across multiple interactions. Use customer service software or other forms of ticket tracking to ensure your agents have the information they need to connect with each user.
- Be Creative: Social platforms are constantly growing and changing. Don’t be afraid to try something new.
Social Service with a Smile
Consumers treat their social media profiles as extensions of themselves, so why wouldn’t your business follow suit?
Adopting a social media customer service plan ensures that your customers are met with the same brand they know and love, regardless of which platform they use to reach out. Doing so will not only provide you with another opportunity to resolve potential issues, but also the chance to continue building the relationships your business needs.