Trendy Social Content

Commentary on transitioning from professional writer with web design experience from a "marketing communications" writer to a UX Writer with graduate training in Technical communication. 

Social Media the Best Customer Service Frontier

Sally and Jenna have loved their favorite lip gloss brand since they were old enough to make duck faces on their Instagram selfies. Over the last five years since Instagram existed they've managed to intrigue more than a hundred thousand peers who are hearting, commenting and crushing on every lip gloss centered post. Because they've made your product part of their story (pun intended).

You've released four new product lines and don't understand why the new lotion, or soaps haven't been as popular as the lip balm. One day your new intern tells you about Sally and Jenna's Instagram posts and how they still love the gloss but aren't crazy about the texture, smell or consistency of the lotion. 

Instagram has been a great place for you to share products with your customer base through influencer marketing, yet when they included your @FaveLipGloss in their comment about the lack of love they have for the new products you weren't engaged. Social media has been a great new tool for accelerated word-of-mouth marketing which has benefited the short term bottom line of many brands.  Now consumers are talking back and brands big and small should be listening. The information age has given way to the social age and companies have the opportunity to receive more feedback and product improvement than E. Jerome McCarthy never imagined. We've found a way to receive more data than most marketers are able to process and not enough listening skills to respond to our customer's or people interested in our products. Let's return to Sally and Jenna. 

Sally and Jenna have inspired the intern to bring their feedback to the attention of her manager in marketing who also works closely with product development. What can be done with this information? Will it be profitable to respond or continue to ignore the responses of the customers giving unsolicited yet priceless feedback? FaveLipGloss company has an opportunity here as does every company with customer's talking to them. Having a social media monitoring and response plan in place is the way every company regardless of size can make using social media their best customer service frontier. 

Sally and Jenna's direct message box can offer them a response to their feedback showing the company cares about their opinion of the product. While FaveLipGloss may not change their formula, this response and acknowledgement of the comments will make Sally and Jenna feel appreciated and respected. While responding to each and every comment or post about your company may feel overwhelming it is a good problem to have... imagine how the B2C company feels that is not being mentioned on Instagram. Commenting with a thanks, high five emoji or other quick response to praise or taking time to investigate constructive criticism via direct message is just one way companies can utilize Instagram as a customer support platform. 

Facebook may not be the organic place to reach customer's of yesteryear but the potential to utilize the service to address and fix customer problems via Messenger and your Facebook page are more powerful than ever. In addition to creating loyalty programs that are just as attractive as marketing campaigns to attract new customers, being able to engage in social listening on Facebook and making sure customers know you're open to resolving issues on social media may turn them from disgruntled to a happy loyal customer. There is a simple, FREE way to do this, make sure customers know you are reading their messages and respond to them. Even if you don't post something on your cover there is a space that shows how quickly you reply to messages on your page... this could turn the once organic hot spot for sharing coupons into a FREE problem resolution center. Happy customer's may not care how fast you respond to messages but someone with a problem that needs to be resolved will be looking for somewhere you are actively listening. Whether you're doing this using an aggregator like Hootsuite, Sprout Social, Facebook Inbox or you're a solopreneur carrying your social media connections on your phone in your pocket responding a great opportunity. A customer who cares enough to contact you is one worth showing you're listening and willing to resolve what prompted them to message you. 

This box on the lower right hand area of your Facebook page is a free way for you to show customers you care. 

Twitter may not be as emotionally driven as Facebook or as hip and cool as Snapchat or Instagram however it is better equipped than any other platform to be a company haven for resolving customer issues using social media. Having an actively listening Twitter account to respond to customer service faux pas is just as important as sharing articles, inspirational quotes and Black Friday deals or Small Business Saturday sales.  With the ability to receive direct messages from anyone whether they follow you or not companies have a FREE platform to communicate with disgruntled customers who hold the ability to tarnish your customer service reputation at the tips of their fingers. Bots to acknowledge a problem has occurred may be acceptable to some but a response from an authorized representative can be the difference between a Twitterstorm of complaints sparked by one witty tweet of unhappiness or a quiet chirp of satisfaction because someone from your entity took the time to care. 

Shawneda Crout