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Leveraging social media to impress and serve your customer base is as easy as boiling an egg…or is it? With this new social media thing, I’m sure most of us are rolling our eyes and thinking; ‘Great. Another internet bubble shoved down our throats by eager-to-please marketers who are just trying to make us shell out more money for our marketing budgets.’
Whether you like it or not, social media is here to stay, and can provide you with a unique opportunity to foster customer engagement and loyalty.
How do you start? It’s really quite simple – start the conversation. Make customers like your Facebook page or Twitter profile, and you’re off to a flying start.
Granted, getting customers to like your Facebook page can be harder than pulling teeth. Don’t worry, though, we’re going to show you how to do so without breaking a sweat.
1. Offer lots of value…for free!
No-one I know can say no to freebies. Your Facebook banner could include a graphic that contains a link which when clicked by a new fan, takes them to another site where they can claim their free gift or discount coupon. Mission accomplished.
For example, you could leverage content marketing and educate your customers. Maybe have a Facebook tab that shows the latest infographic in your Industry?
Or, get physical with them and send them free stuff. We’re currently sending a couple of our funny t-shirts to customers that engage with us over our facebook page.
According to research, the majority of individuals that like company Facebook pages or follow brands on Twitter do this because they seek customer support. They’re tired of being put on hold on the phone, or being forced to play a game of tennis email to get some decent answers as to why the computer tablet they bought didn’t come with accessories as mentioned on the box.
Now, this also depends on the industry you’re in, as you’ll realize that certain industries (such as B2B), people will seek help less and less on the Facebook page, and will typically engage better with email.
Customers want real answers, and they want them now. While you’re busy building an impressive Facebook page to rival Lady Gaga’s, your customers are impatiently waiting to have their questions answered on your wall. If you let these pile up, you might as well sign your own funeral attendance book.
We’ve compiled a couple of tips that can help you foster this relationship on social media in real time. Let’s get this show on the road:
1. Listen and Engage
Your customers want someone to REALLY LISTEN to and understand them. On social media, this could include responding in a timely manner to their posts, and using their name in your responses. Social media is 90% about just TRULY caring about your customers, so say NO to outsourcing these kinds of things.
2. Don’t Redirect
It’s one thing to be told to please hold on the phone, and it’s another thing to be redirected from a Twitter or Facebook page to a company website to have your questions attended to. On social media, you need to attend to a customer’s query organically, in the same way, you would if they were standing across you physically. If there is sensitive information involved, you could ask them to DM you or send you an inbox. Once the issue has been resolved, don’t forget to put out a public post to fill people in on the same.The worst thing you could do is request customers send email@example.com an email, for something that COULD be answered on the spot, on your facebook page.A general rule of thumb when redirecting customers on your social media pages is to ask yourself: “Do they really need to take that extra step, or can we do it right here ?”
3. Set Clear Expectations
Social media, as casual as it may be, shouldn’t be a place where customer support waltzes in whenever they like, or picks and chooses which questions and concerns they’re going to be answering. Things like clearly laying out open and closing hours lets your customers know exactly when their questions are going to be answered, and when they can log in for timely service.
Enhancing customer satisfaction is possible by knowing how to appropriately leverage social media to your advantage.
What are some social media rules you follow to deliver great support to your customers? Post a comment below!