Start seeing Social media as a customer service relationship tool. NOT a selling tool!
How many times have you tried to book a table, ask for opening hours, or ask a store if they have a product in stock, via Facebook messenger, Direct Message on Instagram or WhatsApp? Whether you like it or not Social media is becoming a point of contact to resolve customer questions and concerns.
If done properly, it’s highly effective as it allows a conversation to start on the platforms your customers and prospects are already using.
The quicker you start seeing your platforms as a relationship customer service tool, the quicker you’ll form lasting relationships.
Here are a few stats to show why you need to start incorporating a customer service solution into your business social media plan:
1 billion messages are exchanged between people and businesses every month on Facebook Messenger.
64% of people would rather message than call a business.
46% of people expect brands to offer customer service on Facebook… when in fact only 23% of companies provide this service on Facebook.
So as you can see you're not alone.
But where do you start?
- By setting up a dedicated handle for social media customer support
- For example, Hootsuite has a separate account for this called @Hootsuite_help.
- Do the same using ‘yourcompanyname_help’ and do it on the platforms your customers are active on.
- Share this in your profile/bio of your company social media accounts so people know how to contact you if they need to.
- Alternatively, try a live chat plug-in on the website, this also gives people at all times of the day an alternative contact point. But make sure it’s manned.
- Make sure you have a dedicated customer services team managing the responses and not a third party (unless they have all the possible questions and responses to hand).
- Get your customer service team to generate a list of regular FAQs and the answers and have these ready to copy and paste when required.
- Then see how you get on and refine the process.
- Remember to always gather feedback from the customer service team as this will be crucial to the future of your content marketing. If customers regularly have the same questions, that’s a clue you need to provide some tip sheets and informative posts.
- Always respond and quickly. If you do not have a team managing responses overnight, switch on an automated reply managing their expectation. Facebook is a platform that times your response time. And rewards your pages accordingly.
You know it makes sense to use social media as a customer service channel.
Over the last 18-months or so Covid-19 has altered the way we talk, communicate, meet up, research products and shop etc.
We know things are starting to get back to normal, but for a long period of time, people have become used to buying food online, researching and buying products online etc.
Many will continue with this quick the efficient online buying route and have become to love the fast-paced messaging method too.
At the end of the day, the buying landscape has changed so you need to change the way you sell around it.
The harsh fact is:
- All stores were closed forcing buyers to change their buying behaviour
- All face to face in-store selling and point of sale interaction came to an abrupt end
- Lots of Micro stores have now popped up online,
- People are buying online with digital savvy newly established companies, that you now have to compete with
- Your online customer journey now needs to be tiptop
- You need to be showing up consistently online on the socials nurturing those relationships
- You need to re-think, alter your systems and re-train your customer-facing staff to be the face behind the website live chat, and social media platforms and reply ultra-quick to resolve any complaints or answer any questions etc.
If you feel like having a 121 chat about this topic or your social media in general let’s pencil in a time.
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