Just a few years ago, the idea of social customer service was not really on anyone's radar. However, as more consumers consider social media to be a research tool for products and services, the number of brands that are using social media as a customer service outlet have dramatically increased.
In fact, according to recent research conducted by the Aberdeen Group, nearly 60 percent of brands use social media as a customer service channel, and this figure is projected to grow to 80 percent by the end of 2016.
Considering the huge growth in companies offering social care, there's a very good chance that you're already using social media to address customer questions and concerns. Most businesses would consider their social care strategies to be successful in helping them to retain and acquire new customers.
However, if you're not getting results from your social customer care program, you may be making these 3 big mistakes:
1. You don't have a dedicated person to address social care on each social media platform.
When customers are turning to social media to have their questions addressed, they are doing so because they want a prompt response. Most customers expect a response from brands via social media within 60 minutes. If you don't have a dedicated person to be monitoring your various social media channels for customer care questions, you could easily overlook a customer's pressing issue.
While you want to respond quickly, you also want to make sure that the issue is properly resolved. 88 percent of consumers said they would not buy from a brand that left a customer service issue unresolved on social media. Instead, by responding promptly and professionally, your social customer care program provides you with a powerful way to build credibility for your brand.
2. Your approval process is not optimized.
Often, when a customer is reaching out to a brand's customer service department, they are requesting something that may require approval from higher up (a refund, for example). And, depending on the size of your organization, there may be several departments that would need to be involved in this approval process.
As a best practice, consider implementing an internal social management system that will automatically notify the appropriate departments if approval is needed. This can help to streamline the process and prevent the customer for waiting for several days (or longer) for an answer.
3. Connect social customer service with paid social activities.
If you don't integrate your paid social activities with your social customer service program, you run the risk of serving an ad on social media to an angry customer. This can quickly blow up in your face.
Make it a priority to integrate your social customer care program with all of your paid, owned, and earned social media efforts to prevent anyone that has expressed complaints with your brand from being targeted with social ads.
All in all, the ways that brands are delivering customer service is continuing to improve each year, and social media is becoming a critical vehicle in this arena. The more you can connect your social media efforts to the enhancing the customer experience, the more successful your business will be.