Intro to Social Media and Customer Care
Not long ago, the concept of customer service was confined to the place of business. With the emergence of social media, however, it’s taken on another dimension, and those who master social media and customer care for delivering a customer experience will do well.
Will you be one of them? The following guidelines will help you answer ‘yes!’
Find Your Customers on Social Media
If you’re like most small businesses, you probably have a Facebook page and a Twitter account. Make a quick check to confirm if your customers are actively using these or any other platforms your business may be using. If you’re not sure, there are other tricks to finding them.
Customers expect you to have answers and an open door on social media. And the questions they ask can range from “how long are you open” to “where is my order?” Will you be ready to answer these questions in a timely manner? If you don’t have the bandwidth, find an employee, freelancer or firm who does, and can be there at the ready.
Remember the Basics
The delivery channel may be different, but the concept of customer service hasn’t changed. Being available, courteous and responsive is still as important in social media as it is in person—perhaps even more so since everything is visible.
Know That Silence is Deadly
According to Conversocial, eighty-eight percent of consumers are less likely to buy from a company that leaves questions on social media unanswered. So it’s important to understand that being present is critical to delivering good customer service. Most consumers expect to have a response within a few hours, especially true for an urgent request.
Don’t Make a Scene
If someone makes a negative comment or an inflammatory remark, de-escalate the situation and take the conversation offline. It’s human nature to want to one-up the person or defend your position but resist the urge. There’s little to be gained from a public fight. Your professional response makes you more credible.
Put Your Best Foot Forward
While social media is conversational and informal for many customers, strive to present yourself as professionally as possible. Use complete sentences, make sure autocorrect isn’t working against you and always say ‘please’ and ‘thanks.’
Turn Negatives into Positives
Social media has provided consumers with a powerful pulpit for venting. When this happens, work as hard as you would in person to make the situation right. Show your followers and fans that you’re ready, willing and able to find a resolution. These amazing examples may inspire you.
Remember What’s at Stake
In the old days, a customer with a bad experience might share it with twenty to thirty people. In the age of social media, it has the potential to go viral—hitting millions or more in the process. Don’t let a lapse in customer service or a gaffe that could have been avoided make your business an Internet sensation for all the wrong reasons.
Social media as a customer service channel provides small business owners with an incredible means to connect with customers. By using the guidelines mentioned above you can ensure the connection is a strong one, and that you turn customers into evangelists.
For more insight on providing excellent customer care, download, Excellent Customer Service: Your Roadmap to Success.