The Power of Social
Social media is not to be underestimated – it is a powerful platform.
It’s not only a fun platform for someone like me to share my taco obsession, what I’m reading, or my collection of coffee mugs…
but also a platform where brands are able to service customer needs.
Customer needs may be in the form of a complaint, a question regarding a product, or a need for insights surrounding your company’s industry. With these types of customer needs, it’s important for you and your brand to be present where these people are in order to suppress and moderate these complaints, provide insights, or answer questions.
When customers see a company being responsive on social media, the company becomes real and tangible; and a real, tangible company results in great customer loyalty.
As technology advances, and social media rapidly becomes more and more a part of daily life, it’s important for brands to be where the people are. As of January 2015, globally there are almost 2.1 billion active social media accounts. That’s 29% of the world’s population!
Jimmy John’s is a great example of a company who serves their customers well on social media; I had first-hand experience this year. Through my experience, I concluded that for a brand to be successful in social media customer service, they must be responsive, personal, and provide a solution. Below is a representation of how Jimmy John’s rocked these three core elements in January of 2015.
1. Be Responsive
On this given day, I had Jimmy John’s delivered, and I quickly discovered they had forgotten avocado spread on my sandwich. I was sulking at my desk, when our eMedia Director said, “Tweet at them and see what they say.”… so I did.
Once I (embarrassingly) sent out my tweet, announcing to the world the sadness I felt about my missing avocado spread, they responded in less than 5 minutes. Now that’s FREAKY FAST!
The speed in which they responded was crucial. A 5-minute social media response is not a standard brands should aim toward, but you should be sensitive to customers’ waiting time.
In fact, studies show that 42% of users reaching out to companies, via social media, expect support within 60 minutes. Not only that, but 57% expect the same response time at night and on weekends as during normal business hours.
In a matter of minutes, I was on my way to being contacted directly by the customer service base, via private message, which leads me to my second point.
2. Be Personal
No one wants to be a customer ID. From the moment JJ’s responded to me, they called me by my Twitter handle name, “Lo.” This immediately made me feel like an individual; not another “case.”
In addition to calling me by my Twitter name, they personally assisted me, addressing my issue via direct message.
Not only did I view this as a personalized way of assisting me, but it helped the company out as well. No user following a brand on Twitter is interested in seeing a back-to-back customer service conversation flow through their news feed.
Although it is important to assist a customer via a direct message, it is equally important to make sure you address the issue initially through the main social media newsfeed so that brand followers see you are taking care of your customers.
According to a study done last year, statistics revealed that consumers expect direct responses from brands:
- 43% of consumers say a direct response to their question is most important on a social media site
- 86% of social media customers would like to hear from a company regarding a complaint
Once a company connects with a customer to service their needs, there must be an end goal in mind.
3. Provide a Solution
Jimmy John’s started their customer solution services off with positive action words to let me know they were going to help me.
Not long after I sent Jimmy John’s my contact info, via Twitter direct message, I received a phone call from an auditor in Michigan apologizing for my situation, and I awkwardly apologized back for making my avocado such a big deal.
The GM then personally messaged me and solved my inconvenience by providing me my next Jimmy John’s meal, on them. All this happened within the hour!
For the record: yes, I ordered avocado on my free sandwich and yes, I received it.
The GM also added a personal touch by following up with me later that week to make sure I received my meal.
Eat at Jimmy John’s!
High customer expectations of brands on social media are real, and they will continue to grow, as digital is on an uphill climb. The positive effects social care can have on a brand’s customer loyalty are huge.
According to Buffer Social, 71% of those who experience positive social care are likely to recommend that brand to others, compared to just 19% of customers who do not receive any response. Now that is a big deal.
I’m a prime example of a happy customer who had my needs resolved quickly, in a personal manner, and had a positive solution come of the experience. Now, here I am telling you to EAT AT JIMMY JOHN’S! They provide great customer service and amazing sammies.
See what I did there? Their great customer service has now resulted in my loyalty as a customer.
Amp Up Your Social
If you’ve been thinking of starting a social channel for your business and can’t decide which one is best for your company, or you’re already on a platform and need guidance in how to leverage your customer service, we have a full team capable of assisting you with moderation and customer service needs. Contact us to get the conversation started, and get social!