SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGEMENT
The phenomenal rise of Social Media as a marketing tool for businesses is hardly a surprise given the widespread use of the internet from almost every corner of the globe. Platforms like Facebook and – in particular – Twitter, have become the first form of communication for many people, and the bridge between customer and business is smaller than it has ever been. Check any company where the public are their main customer, such as Domino’s or Tesco, and you’ll find dialogue between Barry from Peckham, or Janice from Scunthorpe, complaining or joking with the anonymous spokesperson behind the buttons of the Social Media accounts.
The impact this has had is huge; a brief scan of the news will contain Tweets considered press releases, Facebook posts treated as Gospel for certain subject matters from important people. Or, even more exciting, discounts on pizza orders. A complaint to an e-commerce company in this enormous form of public domain can mean a lot – which is why so many people have flocked online rather than picking up the phone to sit in a virtual queue to register their displeasure. With that being said, how does a company manage their accounts to deal with their customers in this challenging new way? And how can this be beneficial?
Right Back At Ya
It doesn’t take long for a quick negative hashtag or blog post to do damage to the public image of a company, and the public like nothing more than telling everyone how much you suck. So respond quick, and politely. Settle the dispute openly, finding a way to reimburse your customer. Slow customer service is a pain at the best of times.
Human After All
When talking directly through social media with companies, you aren’t talking to a business. You’re talking to a person. Responses to random complaints are impossible to automate, and given that people prefer to talk to a person instead of a machine (sorry, robots), the human element proves to be hugely important.
For All the World to See
There’s helping people out when they have issues, then there’s helping people out in front of everyone else. It’s hardly a grand gesture, but the long-term effects of people seeing how politely you deal with your customers reflects well on you, and what do you gain from your user base when this happens?
Yes, your customers will be returning regularly, and loyal customers spend 21% more money with your company, whilst 71% of consumers who’ve had a good social media service experience with a brand are likely to recommend it to others (source: http://blog.getambassador.com/social-customer-service-infographic/)
All There is to Know
You’d be surprised how often people find your social media channels through a google search and jump to them rather than your main website. This is why it’s important to have some key details about your company: hours of operation, phone number and email for contact, location. It also means that if a consumer wants a more personal method of communication, they don’t need to look far to get hold of you.