4 Key Tips for Social Media as a Customer Service Medium

Create a Separation between Marketing and Help

It’s always best to create separate accounts for marketing and customer service/“help”. Every business in the world will receive complaints or experience issues at some point. It’s the nature of the beast (as they say) and it’s extremely hard to prevent this from happening altogether! What you can control, however, is the visibility, exposure and perception of these issues. Do you really want your marketing profiles to include negative discussions or customer complaints? No, probably not. Do you want to help your customer and resolve the issues as quickly as possible? Yes, yes and more yes.

Try placing a “for help go to @[insertbrandname]help” message in your marketing profile’s Bio. Trust us, it works!

Not only will this approach direct and control your customer queries (away from your marketing endeavours), but it will be more transparent and helpful for the customer.

 

Establish your Branding and Tone of Voice

There should be complete fluidity between all of your online accounts/presence and your customer service profiles are no exception. Any and all brand information should be cascaded down to your Customer Service Team. There are 4 key factors to consider when creating your overall online Brand Voice-

  • Character/Persona
  • Tone
  • Language
  • Purpose

Let’s put this in to context: Is your brand character cheeky/playful, with fun/witty language, a direct/personal tone and a purpose to sell? Well then, your Customer Service Team needs to adopt this in all interactions. This information needs to be fed to the team and trained out upon recruitment; otherwise, you may end up with a fantastic Customer Service Advisor adopting a professional character, with complex language and a clinical tone- not ideal for your overall marketing strategy! Every interaction makes a difference.

 

Check, Check, Check

Depending on the function/profile of your brand, social media can be a particularly fast-paced, demanding customer service medium. An estimated 67% of consumers now look to networks like Twitter and Facebook for customer service (JD Power), with 33% of customers admitting that they prefer to contact brands via social media instead of calling (Nielson). Customers are still using their phones, but not necessarily to call. It’s also important to have multiple accessibility options to meet your customers’ needs, and social media provides just that.

However, this demand should not compromise the ability to handle all interactions to the highest-possible standard. Spelling and grammar mistakes can result in the customer losing faith in the capability of the Customer Service Team. This is counterproductive. If the resources are existing, then you want your customers to utilise this and have confidence in the Advisors’ ability to assist them with their query. All interactions should be proof-read before posting.

The key to success here is to select and recruit Advisors with the relevant skills- a high level of written communication and an attention to detail- as opposed to selecting Advisors based on availability.

Respond to all Interactions

It’s important to respond to all interactions/comments that head your way, be this in the form of complaints, queries, or positive feedback. It’s not just your tagged interactions that you need to watch either- be sure to search your brand name regularly and respond to people discussing your brand.

Steer clear of cherry-picking or avoiding interactions. By responding to a negative comment, you are attempting to re-build a relationship with your customer and restore their faith in your product/service. What’s more, not only will the customer appreciate your endeavours to help, but this will also set the precedence to all other customers: that you’re open, honest and ready to help should anything go wrong. Besides, your customer will only become more agitated if left without assistance. Don’t we all?

It’s always helpful to view your feed as a whole and complete entity, rather than a number of individual interactions. After all, this is the way your customer will view your social media profiles/feeds, and your Customer Service Team should be mindful of this when responding to interactions. Try and keep responses to negative comments positive and steer clear of drawing attention to any recurring issues.

Try- “Hi xxxx. I see. If you could send me your contact details across, I’ll look into this straight away for you. “

Rather than- “Hi. I’m sorry to hear you’re having issues with [Product/Service]”.

If you have a feed full of the latter, you risk putting both existing and prospective customers off. You can still be open and honest whilst maintaining a positive brand image. Finding this balance will unify your customer service and marketing profiles, whilst helping your customer out in the most efficient way possible. Win-win!

 

If you need any help with your social media customer service, then feel free to get in touch to find out how we can help.

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