Incorporating social media in the marketing mix is a must have strategy for marketers. As a matter of fact, almost 74% of global marketers proactively invest in social media. Over 37% of loyal customers claim that social media has been a major inspiration behind frequent purchases and consistency. In order to engage with your customers beyond their purchases and show them that as a brand you truly care for them, it’s important to be present on various social media channels. Customers love the idea of being able to reach out to brands via online platforms that they are familiar with and already using. Being able to respond to customers whenever and wherever they need you is quite alluring as well. On average, customers spend approximately 20-40% more on products or services if you engage and respond via social media.
Did you know that almost 54% of customers prefer interacting with brands on social media over emails and calls. And for businesses, it’s 83% cheaper to communicate with your potential customers and resolve their concerns on social media, so it’s a definite win for them. Leveraging social media to provide seamless holistic experience for customer care is indeed the way forward. The fact is, social media is a customer care channel more than a customer service or a marketing avenue. It builds brand affinity, increases retention and LTV and also positively impacts the bottom line. Several smart marketers are embracing social media channels as a new frontier to establish their brand voice and they are trying to do that at scale. By scale we mean identifying and engaging the earned social media mentions. Offering omnichannel support is the need of the hour and a growing trend and CXOs swear by it.
With the gradual development and advancement being witnessed in the social media sector, several brands have expressed interest in strategizing and formulating social media schemes for efficient customer service. Below mentioned are 4 effective ways, through which brands can leverage social media for Customer Service.
- Social listening – Be on alert on what’s being discussed on the web. Services such as Google Reader, NetVibes, Social Mention and others can be used to keep up with mentions of your company and brand. Set alerts for certain keywords, terms, and brand names to be immediately notified when new content is posted. Setting up a dashboard with these services is fairly quick and easy, the information comes to you as it happens. The more you know, the faster you can respond. These tools will help you to filter out content that is not relevant to your industry, business or brand.
- Influencer marketing – Understanding the dynamics of today’s marketing arena, it is important for brands to invest in influencer marketing when leveraging social media for several aspects. Other than crowding customer dm’s with unnecessary ads, influencer marketing can directly involve customers into generating more traffic and hence drawing more sales overall. Not only this, but leveraging social media fruitfully can help brands nurture new leads and aid in business acquisition along with retention. By creating educational content on guiding new customers or potential customers through different tiers of level of customer progression, you can easily transform potential leads into paying customers.
- Be prompt with your responses – About 60% of customers who complain on social media expect brands to reply to their concerns within an hour. In order to build brand affinity, it’s vital to respond quickly to issues raised by customers because that shows that you are watching and listening. Otherwise brands often face negative reviews. As a brand that cares, you must constantly monitor your social media handles and any branded hashtags continuously. In most cases, you can set up automated responses through bots. Never wait for issues to escalate, because this can hurt your brand’s reputation. Offering excellent customer service can alter your brand’s perception and increase retention and loyalty. Social media has made business communication a 24 hour commitment. In fact, both positive and negative reviews are out in the open for anybody to see and customers influence customers. If you’re swift enough to respond to concerns, reviews, and comments, it shows that you value your customers’ opinions.
- Messaging apps are the future – Customers expectations are constantly altering and they expect personalized, mobile first customer service by brands. Messaging is fast becoming popular and the channel of choice among a growing number of customers because it provides the preferred experience that they are looking for. With messaging apps, there are no more long holds and waiting days for an email response. Watsapp and Apple Business Chat are fast becoming integral to customer service. As of July 2019, WhatsApp was the?most popular mobile messenger app worldwide, with over 1.6 billion monthly active users. (Statista). Customer experience is now the most important differentiating factor for businesses and almost 89% of businesses compete on the level of service they deliver, and those brands that offer outstanding and thoughtful interactions will witness customers coming back to them. To do this, you need to meet them where they are, and provide effortless experience while they are there.
Implementing social media strategies for enhanced customer service isn’t the end of the job. The task requires more than just implementation and monitoring. As social media is very engaging, dealing with every individual customer might get overwhelming. Hence it is equally important to successfully manage customer support volume. By efficiently managing that, brands can reach out to critical issues first and give their attention to queries that need immediate action. For more effortless and coordinated management, businesses can invest in multi-channel customer service platforms, to have access to customer’s past purchasing history.
Being a great customer service tool, Social Media is well suited to the current marketing dynamics and can be used accordingly to reach desired results. Handling customer complaints effectively and swiftly on social media will not only throw light on your brand’s dedication towards its customers but also positively transform potential leads into paying customers.
For more than 10 years, Annex Cloud has been the worldwide leader in technology and service solutions that transform customer loyalty experiences for organizations, extending valued customer engagement, and collecting valuable customer information for enabling data-led strategies. Powered by the comprehensive and scalable Loyalty Experience Platform™, Annex Cloud customers capture and use zero- and first-party data to seamlessly deliver hyper-personalized experiences across the entire customer journey – from awareness to purchase to retention, loyalty, and advocacy. Brands partner with us to take advantage of our robust platform capabilities as well as get industry expert recommendations that help ensure the success of their loyalty programs as well as increased customer retention. The company is recognized by industry respected organizations like Gartner and Forrester and integrates with 100+ market-leading technologies. Get in touch with us today!