Friday, November 24, 2017

Is Social Media Necessary For Good Customer Service

I don't know how many times I've heard about a product or service and figured I'd "check them out online" as soon as I had a chance, only to find that they have no social media presence. This is always a bit shocking, considering how many people have Internet access and how many billions of people are online. It's literally free advertising and if you have a business, you should probably have some way for potential clients or customers to contact you. Of course, the good old phone numbers, billboards, TV ads, radio ads, and print will always come in handy. But, with so many people online, you're missing out on reaching virtually everybody in the world. 

Social Media Advertising


Of course, just simply having a Twitter or a Facebook page isn't going to be enough. Sure, people will be able to find you a little better but you're going to have to communicate with customers and try your best to reach new people. 

At the same time, there are a few companies I can think of right off of the top of my head who have a very large following on social media, regular posts, but they lack quality customer service. Typically, people will comment or message and ask questions, leave comments or reviews. If nobody answers them, they will go elsewhere. (I've done this many times.) It's unfortunate, but, if you can't respond within a few days or you just post and let everything sit while you ignore everybody, it could end up hurting you in the long run. 

Depending on the size of your business you may want to consider hiring a social media manager. They can post on your social networks for you and manage replies, reviews, complaints, questions, offer giveaways, promote, share, basically everything you need to have customer success. You should have an active social network where you can share everything there is about your brand, What do you do? How much does it cost? What makes you stand out? What do your customers think? Offer promotions, deals, coupons, and even post when you have positions available. If you're a small business, a few simple eBooks and maybe some online courses about social media marketing and you're set! 

There are more advanced opportunities out there but once you take this step in the right direction, you'll advance and learn quickly! 

Look For The Companies Who Are Doing It Right

There are so many brands out there. I'm trying to think of even just 1 brand that we use at our house for anything that I don't follow online somewhere. I feel like if you can't take the time to make sure I'm content, you're probably not worth it. If I have to Tweet for several weeks straight, asking for help regarding my ISP and the wishy-washy connection and you haven't responded, I'm going elsewhere. (and it's a good possibility that I'll take a few others with me. Or at least turn a few away when they research you and find my complaints.) 

There are thousands of makeup brands out there who all make some sort of lipstick. If I decide I would like to try 4 different brands of lipstick to find my absolute perfect match, I have criteria I follow. Highly pigmented, fair price, ingredients, availability, packaging, history, mission, do you donate to any charities? Do you offer any rewards programs for repeat customers? If I have a question, do I have a tiny 1800 number to call between the hours of 9AM EST and 4PM EST? OR if I Google search will I find a website with links to Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, Google+ or any of the above? When I find these links, are you active? What are other customers saying? How do you respond? If any of the above does not look totally excellent, I'll be moving on. Am I the Queen of lipstick? Nope. Not at all. But, I'm a customer who could end up being devoted to your brand and I could be bringing my friends, family, followers, and possibly others who read my online reviews about your fabulous lipstick and phenomenal customer service! 

There are a LOT of brilliant social media accounts out there for brands! Of course, the bigger they are, the more they can spend. They may be online around the clock, manning the comments, tweets, and reviews. Or they might shut down at nighttime and are right back at it in the morning. 

I'm sure you have already seen something in the news or maybe your friends have brought up something funny they read or saw on Twitter. You may have heard about the Wendy's Twitter account once or twice. This is a brand who is doing it right. They are always there, always have clever comebacks, and they are consistent with replies to disgruntled customers. They will make you laugh, scour Twitter for people Tweeting about how hungry they are, they will go above and beyond just to attract and keep customers. I'm not sure who runs their Twitter account but whoever it may be, that person is a genius. This account has made national news more than once and will continue to in the future. 

Learning from others is essential when building your own network. You don't want to copy but take notes There are a lot of great accounts from great brands. Wendy's sells burgers, chicken sandwiches, french fries, and salads. So do quite a few other similar restaurants. But, they have managed to find their difference and they will be impossible to beat at the social media game.  

You wouldn't ignore thousands or possibly millions of customers banging on your door. Don't ignore them on the Internet. They could make or break you and you need them for customer success


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