One Serious Social Media Slip-up that Could Cost you Customers (And How to Correct It)
“The opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference,” Elie Wiesel, an American-Romanian writer, Nobel Laureate, and a Holocaust survivor, reminds us.
A few years back, Hasan Syed was so crazy mad about British Airways’ poor customer service that he took to Twitter to share his grievances. In fact, Syed used Twitter’s paid promotion services to reach every user following British Airways. Not surprisingly, the tweet reached 76K users.
Guess what? The British Airways social media team responded to Syed’s tweet almost 8 hours later. According to HubSpot, a majority of consumers expect a response on Twitter within an hour. This delay could prove to be a big blot on any company’s customer service reputation.
I know what you are thinking:
Aren’t social media teams supposed to be available around the clock? Aren’t they oriented towards instant support, especially in the wake of studies that reveal 68% of customers leave you if you don’t care for them?
Photo Credit: Stan Phelps, Statistic – Bloomberg Business
According to a study by Conversocial, customers ignored by companies on social media might top doing business with the company, altogether.
- 45% would be angry
- 1% would stop doing business with the company completely
With social media becoming the go-to tool for most customers by 2020 and nearly 47% of customers expecting a faster response rate to queries and concerns, it’s time for brands to roll up their sleeves and grease their social media wheels. Perhaps, more importantly, even brush up their eCommerce apps as 46% of customers are going to rely on mobile apps for customer service in the coming years. Here’s how:
1. Set up a Dedicated Social Handle for Customer Service
It’s been observed that the best brands set up a dedicated social media handle for customer support requests. This helps them separate the marketing messages received through regular channels to those received via various social media channels. This, in turn, helps the social media team address the concerns and queries of annoyed and angry customers ASAP.
2. Create Comprehensive Q & A Guidelines
With social media becoming an integral part of customer service, it’s become crucial for businesses to offer full-fledged support to customer service teams. You could initially focus your attention on top platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, with these leading platforms launching new features in a blink of an eye. The document could deal with questions like:
- What’s the ideal response time for customers service reps?
- What if the customer service rep doesn’t have an appropriate answer to a query?
- Should customer service personnel be allowed to switch over to his personal account at any point in time?
Additionally, the document should set the dos and don’ts for each of the platforms. Say, for instance, images and GIFs might work on Twitter, but not on LinkedIn. Further, the document should let customer care reps know where to draw the line. To cut to the chase, create an exhaustive document detailing each and every aspect of your social media platform. Plus, keep updating it as soon as new changes are being introduced.
3. Nail Down the KPIs for your Social Media Support Team
What is not measured cannot be improved. Bear in mind the business goals you need to chalk out such as key metrics you want your social media or customer support team to measure.
A platform like Facebook allows both internal teams and even customers to keep track of social media response rates. Customers could, in fact, check whether the brand is responsive or not before sending a message.
As social media becomes a powerful tool for customer support, you need to start measuring its role in customer retention and whether your team is able to convince frustrated customers to stay.
Overall Brand Perception
It helps to keep a close eye on the overall brand perception that gets built by your customers on different social media channels. You could source this information through surveys and even through a social media monitoring tool. Once you’ve sourced this information, separate the positive reviews from the negative and figure out whether your customer care team has been successful in converting any of those negative sentiments into positive ones.
4. Find the Right Tools for Measuring and Monitoring
Facebook Messenger already has quick replies, customer chat plugins, and better customization tools. Twitter enables people to privately share their opinions with a business after a service interaction. The recent launch of the green dot symbol on Instagram is another case in point. The green dot appearing next to your brand name simply means your brand is active online and customers are free to interact with you, in real time.
When customers are talking about you, on any platform, you need to be listening. For this, set up Google Alerts on your company name. It’s free and quick. However, appoint a person to look into the social media messages and give them the authority and support to answer those messages. In case of constraints or issues, just redirect the complaints to your email or telephone number.