Social Media Customer Service: Tips and Tools to Do It Right

Social Media Customer Service: Tips and Tools to Do It Right

Written by Logan Erbse

March 13, 2021

Social media is emerging as one of the primary and most efficient ways to promote your product, service, or brand. However, to be successful in this type of marketing, you have to stay consistent and be proactive in engaging with your customers online. Learning about social media customer support will help you and your company to thrive in the world of social media marketing. 

What is social media customer support?

Social media customer support offers help through the various social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. This tool allows businesses to answer any customer questions or concerns and is a great way for customers to feel connected to the company. Social media customer support is extremely important because people expect companies to have exceptional customer service and to respond almost immediately. Below are some statistics relating to why social media customer support is essential for a great business:

  • One-third of all customer complaints are never answered with most of them being on social media
  • Answering a complaint increases customer advocacy by as much as 25%
  • Not answering a complaint decreases customer advocacy by as much as 50%
  • 80% of consumers use social media to engage with brands 
  • 60% of customers who complain on social media expect a response within an hour
  • 60% of internet users say bad customer service is a concern when making an online purchase
  • 36% of respondents to a U.S. survey said, “great customer service” is motivation to recommend a brand online

In the stats shown above, social media customer support can have a very lasting impression on your customers. They will be more motivated to continue supporting your brand and will feel more inclined to recommend it due to the great customer service it provides. It is easy to implement customer service into your company’s social media strategy. However, it takes the right tips and tools to be successful in this area. 

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In today’s age, many companies are already incorporating social media customer support into their online marketing strategies. However, not all companies utilize this tool as effectively as they should. Customers recognize brands for having outstanding customer support on social media platforms. Here are some tips on how your company can have great customer service and create lasting impressions for your customers:

1. Choose the best social media platforms for your business

Not every business or company will be successful on the same social platform. What works for one company may not work for yours. When choosing the best platform for your business, you have to ask yourself: Where are my customers at? When you determine which platform customers use the most, then you can tailor the customer service experience to better fit them and their social network preferences. 

2. Monitor social mentions

You can use tools such as Social Mention or Mentions to be able to get notified whenever a customer posts or comments about your product or company. Having tools that let you know when you are mentioned is great because you can provide immediate responses. 

3. Set up a separate handle for customer support

Your business should have a regular account and a separate account for providing customer support. Two separate accounts will allow you to see customer concerns and questions more quickly and respond more promptly. By focusing on one account for customer service, customers will be able to get the more personalized assistance that they need. 

4. Be responsive

Customers love being heard, but they also love a quick response. By being reactive to customer complaints or demands, your business can show that they are paying attention, and you truly acknowledge the customer. No response indicates a bad response, so whether it’s a like or emoji, always take the time to respond to show that your business is active on social media.  

5. Know when to take certain conversations offline

It’s important to know when to take a private conversation off of a social media platform. Whether you’re going back and forth with a customer trying to address concerns or sensitive data needs to be exchanged, you can transfer the issue to another channel such as email or phone. However, using the right tone and empathy can assure customers that they will still be taken care of properly. 

Social Customer Service: How To Be Exceptional In It

Many companies are using social media customer service to assist their customers online and provide further support for any help they may need. However, some companies show exceptional customer service on social media. 

1. Starbucks

By using the tool of social mentions, Starbucks can stay connected and engaged with their consumers. Starbucks’ Twitter and Facebook accounts are extremely responsive to customer complaints- with most of them being answered within hours. 

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Image courtesy of: https://bit.ly/3ctCLtm

2. Hyatt Hotels and Resorts

When you decide to stay in a hotel, you want to be able to relax and enjoy it. @HyattConcierge on Twitter makes your hotel stay ten times easier. Hyatt does an amazing job of providing 24/7 answers through @HyattConcierge for whatever needs or questions you may have. 

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Image courtesy of: https://bit.ly/3rHFo1c

3. JetBlue

Customers typically reach out to a company and look for a quick response. JetBlue handles this well by responding to customers within just minutes. With 1.93 million followers, JetBlue provides excellent customer service by being very active.  

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Image courtesy of: https://bit.ly/3rG54LK

4. Amazon

Amazon nails exceptional customer service on social media by being personable and attentive to customers. According to Amazon, its goal is to deliver “timely, accurate, and professional customer service to all its customers.” @Amazonhelp answers every question promptly by a real Amazon representative. These representatives take the time to help each customer solve their issue. 

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Image courtesy of: https://bit.ly/3qL1M8p

5. Spotify 

Spotify focuses on personalizing its brand through linking song titles whenever the opportunity hits. When one Instagrammer thanked Spotify for their help, they commented, “if you need anything else…” and then linked a song titled “Right Here Waiting” by Richard Marx. Spotify takes customer service to a new level by creating this strong brand identity. 

Image courtesy of: https://bit.ly/38yFTmH

Is Twitter an effective customer service tool?

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Many companies use a variety of different social media platforms to provide customer support. Twitter can be used as a great customer service tool because of how convenient the platform is. Instead of using phone or email as the communication channel, replying via tweet or direct message can be almost instant. Using Twitter as a customer service tool can be quick for both parties (customer and company), and it provides flexibility for other customers needing the same answer. With the tweets being public, anyone can see and receive help from one customer’s questions or concerns. Twitter is a great tool for customer support because it allows your company to create and maintain a powerful online presence. 

How fast should brands respond on a platform?

When customers reach out to a brand on social media, they usually expect a response within 24 hours. They’re typically looking for a quick and prompt response, so brands should keep this in mind when replying to customers. Many customers rely on social support from brands because emails and phone calls back-and-forth can become tedious, and social media is much more convenient for most people. Being quick in responses can set your brand apart from competitors and give you an edge. Speedy customer service can also result in loyal and happier customers. So how fast should you respond? The faster the response time, the better. 

Understanding (and Improving) Social Media Customer Service

Understanding social media customer service can be the key to operating a great business. However, if social media customer support is done poorly, it could decrease customer retention and brand loyalty of your company.

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Is social media the solution to bad customer service?

Using social media as a customer service tool can improve the way your company addresses customer concerns and questions. By having the ability to generate quicker and more personalized responses through social media, your brand will be able to create a loyal customer base and maintain customer retention. Having great customer service is a priority for many people when they are using a specific brand. By effectively utilizing social media customer support, your brand is likely to stand out against competitors and provide customers with what they need. 

How is technology changing customer service?

Social media platforms allow customers and brands to stay connected throughout the day. Customers are now able to share good and bad experiences, questions, and concerns with businesses instantly through technology. This type of feedback helps businesses improve or enhance their products and allows customers to get the help they need. Time is of the essence in today’s society, and technology allows for consumer issues to be resolved as quickly as possible. With the accessibility and convenience of technology today, customers and businesses can remain connected.

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