There is one pro to having a social media customer service; your interaction with the consumer is public and the masses get to see what your brand says and the way you respond. The con is that your interaction with the consumer is public and the masses get to see what your brand represents and the way you respond. However, you can use this to your advantage in a way; by managing your strategies and tactics of customer service according to the clients’ expectations to get the desired result for your brand.
Quality of Response
For instance, a Social Index report released by Sprout revealed that if you fulfill the consumers’ expectations, they are 80% more likely to consider your brand over a competitor by visiting your brands’ website and physical retail store and buy from there. Also by leaving a trail of good reviews for other consumers, they are sure to boost the sales of your brand.
The report also showed that 47% of the customers believe that what they look for most in a brand is the quality of their customer service. The key message is right there; by engaging with the customers on your brands’ social media page, you are more likely to make sure that their loyalty to your brand remains intact or builds new relationships.
Lack of response to social media queries and comments can negatively impact the brands’ image, specifically when those are negative comments. Of course it is not possible to solve every query consumers post, but by acknowledging their affair, you are preventing your brands’ standing from being jeopardized. By ignoring those comments, you are giving the power to the consumer to ruin your brands’ reputation. However, if you do respond, by either apologizing or embracing their negative comments with positive ones, it could create a balance of power in these situations and provide some sort of relief to those easily influenced consumers reading those negative comments.
While the consumers expect a response from the brands about their queries, the response time also plays a big part on their impression about your brand. An infographic report by Khoros showed that half the social media users expect brands to respond to their posts and complaints within three hours. 50% of Twitter users want the brands to reply to their queries within three hours, whether the communication is a public tweet or private message. 47% Facebook users and 55% Instagram also expect the same from the brands they have reached out to via social media. The three-hour response timeframe is a small window of opportunity for brands like you to fulfill the customers’ expectations.
Khoro also revealed in the report that when brands do meet the consumers’ timeframe expectations, it could prove to be advantageous for the brand itself. 54% Twitter users have said that they would continue to maintain their loyalty to the brands if they respond quickly to their queries. 50% Facebook users and 45% Instagram users also agree to the same. 47% Instagram users are more willing to recommend the brand to their friends and families for quick responses from the brand on their social media platform (43% for Twitter, 40% for Facebook). In this fast-paced world, consumers are bound to expect faster response to their queries, since they obviously prefer social media response over waiting for the phone call. Hence, brands need to employ efforts towards faster response rates to positively improve the brands’ image by bringing in more consumers.
Consumer Expectations vary from Platform to Platform
There are also multiple factors that affect the consumers’ decision to reach out to brands on social media platform. For instance, Instagram users have the highest brands expectations from all the social media pages which goes to show that Instagram is where consumers actively post their queries and comments and that is where the brands need to stay active. There is a gender difference found in consumers’ communication with the brands on social media; 81% men reach out to brands on their social media as compared to women (61%). Similarly men also have a higher expectations about the response time; 27% of them expecting a response within an hour. Moreover, millennials (people born after 1980), as compared to Gen X (people born in 1960s-80s), want the brands to respond to their queries within an hour (30%). Hence, brands must also keep in mind these factors to generate potential consumers.
It goes without saying that there are of course some companies like Spectrum, who deem customer satisfaction to be a priority for their business, have an option on their website for customers to reach out for any query or complaint regarding their service. Queries like Charter bill pay can be discussed over the phone given on their website and also via chat support. Commendable efforts like these will help improve their position in the end.
In conclusion, it is to be noted that online presence has become vital over the past 15 months due to COVID-19 restrictions and people being locked up in their homes. To seek some sort of connection to the real world, everyone has turned to social media platform to fulfill their needs in various ways and it looks like this sort of predicament is here to stay for a long while. Brands need to enhance their image by making use of such an opportunity.