Providing great customer service is critical online. Whether you're prepared or not, your customers will be expecting a quick response whenever they experience an issue or have a question.
Sharing great content is only half the battle on social media. You also need to engage your community. Are you set up to handle customer service through social media?
Disney is renowned for its magical customer service. As Gregory Ciotti writes for Helpscout, Walt Disney fostered that culture by treating his theme parks as factories, and designing consistent processes that could ensure a fantastic experience at scale.
Similarly, good processes can set you apart from the competition when it comes to providing outstanding customer service every time online. Here are four techniques you can use to make the most of your customer service on social media:
1. Develop a Customer Service Tone
Don't underestimate the power of a positive tone. Studies show that the way you frame a message can dramatically change the way it is interpreted. Try creating a language guide for your brand. Customer service expert John DiJulius suggests creating an "Never/Always" list: a set of bullet-points that guide every customer service interaction. For example, your list might include guidance like this:
- Make excuses
- Blame the customer
- Show frustration
- Answer every question
- Use positive language
- Show with images
2. Use the Right Tools
Do you have an existing customer service platform? Zendesk, Desk and Help Scout are some of the best known. Zendesk offers the benefit of integrating Facebook and Twitter comments and messages, making it easy for your support team to reply.
Otherwise, Hootsuite and Sprout Social are specifically designed for managing replies to social media posts. Hootsuite is ideal when you have multiple people responding to comments on social media. It allows you to assign tasks to others and see who's replied to each post.
3. Be Online 24/7
If you're an online business, you can't afford not to be online around the clock. You need to be online when your customers are. Our support team at Canva work on a rotating roster so that we can support our community when they need it.
Alternatively, if you can't be present 24/7, provide a clear set of times when you are online and available to answer enquiries. You can provide this in your company's description on Twitter or Facebook. List the times during the week you are available (e.g., "We're here to help from 9-5pm PDT, Monday--Friday.")
4. Make Social Media Visible to Your Team
The voice of your customers or users won't be heard in your organisation unless you make an effort to share their feedback with your team. A good approach is to share a weekly or monthly report with your whole team, sharing the common questions, complaints and suggestions that your followers are making. Twitter collections makes it easy to compile relevant tweets in a collection you can share.
Think about who from your team should interact with customers online and make sure they have access to your social media profiles. You may want people from different teams to take social media questions, depending on the topic.
Providing great customer service on social media requires a consistent strategy. Focus on developing your customer service tone and getting the right people in your organisation online and interacting with your community.
Have you got any techniques that have improved your customer service? Share them in the comments below!