When we contact a company via social media, it’s a choice. We’ve chosen the channel on which we want to communicate on because it’s convenient for us. We’ve chosen when are where because as a customer, it’s what suits us.
Customer service is what separates the great companies from the bad. Social media allows brands to deliver customer service with efficiency, proactively and with a personalised factor that you don’t get from anything other than social media. Being pro when it comes to social media gives brands an edge that others don’t have.
As a team of experts in social media, we spend a huge amount of time engaging with it. We’ve noticed trends arising around social media customer service.
Proactive Customer Service
Simply responding in a reasonable amount of time isn’t enough to please customers these days. It takes excellence when it comes to customer service to impress. Poor customer service will be noticed, it’ll be spoken about and word will get around.
Yes – people like quick responses and quick solutions to their problems. It’s not hard to do these things and customers know that. People will discuss your brand without linking to your account and you need to know about this to respond. Proactive customer service needs you to have listening tools active to discover these posts and then you need a positive approach to engaging with them. This is what separates good customer service and proactive customer service.
A report published by Salesforce in 2017 shows that over half (54%) of consumers expect an instant response to their messages. Facebook allows a businesses to be identified as a fast responder if they respond 90% of all messages within 15 minutes.
In an age of social media, we’ve been conditioned to expect quick responses whatever time we ask for them. We all have slightly different expectations, some of us are happy to wait a while and some want a response and solution there and then. The same is true for all customers though, that we get frustrated by waiting.
The increasing amount of companies adopting automated solutions means that these expectations will only get higher. Brands can expect to see a higher number of consumers wanting immediate responses.
Humans and Bots Uniting to Create Quality Customer Experience
Last year, MIT released a report which found that above 90% of brands with globally recognised customer satisfaction levels used artificial intelligence to support their customer service efforts.
There’s a lot of concern surrounding automation and the response it receives. Many business make use of bots in processing queries from customers and simple questions and requests. This allows human specialists to allocate more time to complex issues brought by customers.
Functional requests are easily dealt with by automated services. Where empathy, creativity and connection is required humans are better equipped to take care of these issues.
Shift from traditional customer services platforms to social media
Reports have shown that instant responses and 24/7 access to customer care have an impact upon customer loyalty to brands. Salesforce reported last year that 80% of consumers felt that instant replies had a moderate to major impact on their loyalty to a brand. 71% of participants highlighted access to 24/7 customer care as the biggest influence on their loyalty. 69% emphasised how personalised care is of high importance to them.
Social media gives brands the tools to be responsive to customers across the globe in a range of time zones. Social listening tools as well as CRM software means that responses can be unique for each customer. We predict that as this method of customer service becomes more sophisticated and polished, brands will collectively favour it over traditional means of customer service.