On Tuesday night, our CEO Joshua March took part in a Mashup event on The Social Customer & Social Loyalty.
Monitored by Kred CEO Andrew Grill, Josh was part of a panel that included Guy Stephens (Social Media/SCRM Consultant Cap Gemini), Warren Buckley (Managing Director of BT Retail Customer Service) and Amanda Brown (Head of PR, First Direct Bank). Warren and Amanda each spoke for a few minutes about their history with social customer service and gave insight into their expertise on the growing field.
The panel debate touched on how the whole social customer service phenomenon began, and topics and issues that are affecting social media today. The participants weighed in on where they predict the future of social customer service to be going, and if we will ever reach a point where companies will be able to link a customer’s call center experiences with their social media posts.
There were many interesting thoughts and opinions being voiced about the appropriate approach to social customer service. Various strategies, dos, and don’ts were passed around the panel. From all of this information come five key things to consider when conducting customer service through social media.
- The social environment gives a voice to its users. Customers can voice their opinions and experiences to all their followers over various social networks. For many customers, Twitter and Facebook are the perfect places for customers to raise issues publicly and finally be heard.
- Twitter responses need to be faster than Facebook ones. Research shows that 30% of Twitter users expect a response within 30 minutes, while 29% of Facebook users expect one within 2 hours.
- People are tweeting about brands from inside the store. We’ve found that 20% of customers that turn to Twitter to voice positive and negative customer service experiences will do so immediately, or while it’s going on.
- If an issue is raised on Twitter, it should continue on Twitter, and be resolved on Twitter. The same goes for Facebook. If customers chose that medium to contact a brand, why would a customer service representative refer them to another? Referring customers to call centers or the company website is simply not enough.
- The time is now. More customers than ever are turning to social media for their customer service questions. In fact, 74% think it will become a major channel in the future. These customers want to receive a direct response from a representative, to solve any issues they may have, and to give feedback on products and services.
The Social Customer & Social Loyalty Mashup event confirmed that the demand for social customer service growing rapidly, and customer expectations are rising along with it. Businesses will need to acknowledge this and take advantage of it, or they won’t be able to keep up.