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How to Promote Messaging as a Support Channel

Harry Rollason
By Harry Rollason on Mar 21, 2018 6:45:00 AM

Modern consumers are flush with choices. They comparison shop, use aggregator sites like Amazon and TripAdvisor, and 54 percent of consumers prefer to shop with companies that offer messaging support via SMS, Facebook, Twitter, and WhatsApp. It’s mobile, it’s familiar, and it’s the future.

But unless customers know about messaging, they’ll sit glumly on hold and post about it.

To realize the benefits of digital support, customer care teams must advertise their digital channels.

1. Integrate messaging support into your website

The easiest way to improve support is to reduce friction and eliminate steps in the customer journey. To this end, Facebook’s latest Facebook Messenger integration makes things impossibly simple: Brands can plug Facebook Messenger directly into their website.

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Consumers can now seek support just as easily as chatting with friends. Messenger also supports chatbots and saves customer conversation histories, essentially turning any brands' home or contact page into a personal consumer-to-brand conversation. Similar features are making their way to WhatsApp.

 

2. Feature messaging support on your contact page

Even brands with award-winning digital customer service don’t always advertise their support, though they should. Every year Sawhorse Media holds the Shorty Awards which honor the best brands on social media. If last year’s nominees for best customer service are indicative of the broader market, only 30 percent of companies providing noteworthy social care actually list it as a support channel on their contact page.

If messenger support is as convenient for your customers as the broader market, your brand can get a leg up on even the best of your competitors by giving it top billing.

3. Promote messaging support on other support channels

Today, most companies use their on-hold messages to promote self-help support. “For faster support, visit our website,” they say. It’s time for these jingles to promote messenger services.

Anywhere customers are kept on hold, where they become frustrated, or on a channel that’s relatively expensive to staff, give consumers a gentle nudge toward messaging.

Nudges can lead to significant savings. Research by Conversocial found legacy channels like phone and email can cost between $2.50 and $6 per interaction. Digital care transactions cost around $1 each.

Over thousands and perhaps millions of transactions, the savings add up. Research by Forrester found that the average large enterprise saved $1.5 million with a digital support solution like Conversocial. Wherever support costs and customer frustrations run high, promote messaging.

4. Ask happy consumers to share

Nothing promotes a service like happy customers. If they’ve had their needs met on messaging services and develop a strong preference for these apps, they’ll become advocates. And because messaging support occurs on the de facto channels where consumers interact with friends, family, colleagues, and acquaintances, people are likely to share their pleasure regarding your digital support.

Brands can amplify the sharing by ending positive messaging support interactions with a recommendation: Want to save your friends from waiting on hold? Let them know about messaging support. 

Waiting on hold may be a disagreeable fact of life but today, with messaging, it doesn’t have to be. Brands simply need advertise it.

Want to understand the key consumer behaviors and trends impacting the state of digital customer service in 2018? If so read our recently released State of Digital Care in 2018 report that lays out best practices for ensuring your brand is delivering in-the-moment resolutions, at scale, to drive profitable and lasting relationships over social and digital channels. In this report, you will understand why:

  • Over half of respondents (59%) still prefer a human resolution to that of a bot
  • 81% of respondents have higher digital care expectations today then they did a year ago
  • 63% of respondents cited a good digital care experience as very important to their brand loyalty

Read the briefing report here to help you overcome common, digital customer care challenges and become a digitally mature customer focused brand! 

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