Social customer service is an important tool to build customer experience, drive loyalty, enhance brand reputation and lower operational expenses by reducing the volume of customer service calls. However, in order to successfully cater to your customers through social customer service you need to offer quick response and resolution.
Exposed to the gold standard of customer service, consumers today want answers to their queries and resolutions to their issues and they want it right now. They do not have time to wait for a day to get a response of an email or to wait in an IVR queue to talk to another human. In such situations social customer support can come to the company’s rescue. When done rightly the personal, knowledgeable and helpful nature of social customer service can not only resolve customer issues pronto but can also drive better customer experience and boost brand reputation.
But the question is, how can a brand with limited resources, small teams, and isolated departments (CRM, helpdesk, customer support, and social) deliver faster and more effective customer care interactions via social media? Here are a few tips:
1. Show the human face of your company
Your customers prefer interacting with other people, not automated systems. Social customer care agents can quickly connect with consumers on a personal level by showing empathy for the consumer and their issues. And thus, they create the opportunity to diagnose an issue further, leading to quicker resolution. This also improves your brand perception.
2. Acknowledge pronto
It is possible that a social customer care agent may not have all the answers or that resolving the issue requires the customer to be redirected to another department or channel (for due to personally identifiable information requirements or other sensitive information), the agent must let the customer know that they are on the care and the brand cares for its customers. Customers today are willing to wait a little if the company acknowledges their requests or issues.
In case an issue cannot be resolved right away, the agents should provide the customer with a timeframe and stick to it. A little delay here and there is okay but do not go a whole day past the deadline to provide a response. This way your company can lose their precious goodwill.
3. Don’t compel customer to change the channel unless absolutely necessary
Customers today prefer to get a response to their issue in the same channel through which they interacted with the company regarding the issue. While there are times when conversations need to be taken offline, businesses should attempt to respond to issues publicly through the same channel where the inquiry is made. Pushing your customers from one channel to another is never a good idea. This leads to confusion and frustration and increases the resolution time significantly.
4. Clearly mention operating hours
If you can’t provide 24-hour social care support, have the information clearly listed across all channels. Better still hire a BPO for managing your social customer care during the non-operational hours. If that is not an option for you, make sure to list other communication channels of your brand, as well as links to other useful information, FAQs, easy-fix videos, and much more.
5. Get the right for the right job
Your social care team should be armed with the right tools and training, and tested against any type of scenarios. You can either integrate social experts into the traditional call center or transition and train members of the call center for social response. Availing the social customer care services from a reputed BPO can also be a solution. However, be sure to have a tight integration between your inhouse customer service team and the outsourced ones. This will help you identify mass issues quickly by addressing your customers through proactive posts and messages across all communication channels. It will also reduce the response time and volume of inquiries through social and traditional channels.
6. FAQs and pre-approved information
If you analyze the queries carefully, you can always find a list of questions that are repeated time and again across all channels. You can easily develop a list of these FAQs with their responses, get it approved and keep it stored in a content library for quick distribution. This will help you in reducing the social care response time and costs and improve the efficacy of your social care team.
7. Know the Customers
Knowing your customers and understanding their value to your company can help you prioritize responses and decide the way some individual cases are handled. A customer with a wide social footprint, or a brand advocate with deep knowledge about your product should get a priority treatment. Therefore, social care agents must look for social profile information of a customer before responding.
However, you must also know the time when most of your customers are active on social media and manage your workforces accordingly to provide quick and efficient resolutions to all your customers. The response provided to all customers should be prompts, personalized with thoughtful in order to increase their satisfaction level.
8. Get Right Tools
You need to have the right tools and technology in place for more effective and efficient care. With the use of monitoring, categorization, filtering and automated routing, together with approval workflows and measurement as well as reporting capabilities social care efforts can be speeded up and improved.
Like all customer service channels social customer service too needs to be managed quickly and thoughtfully. If you do not speed up the response times, or leave questions unanswered your customers will feel devalued and frustrated and will vent their annoyance in public. Therefore, bad social customer service is worse than having no social customer service at all.