The Blog

Using Social Media for Customer Service: What Customers Want

If you read my previous blog, you now know why it’s important to use social media for your customer service. In this part, let’s figure out what exactly customers want and expect from companies.

Quick Response to Problems

The number one thing customers want is a fast response. According to an Edison study, 42% of consumers expect a response on social media within one hour, and 32% think it should be within 30 minutes of their complaint.

Did you know that more consumers would recommend a brand that provides a quick but ineffective response than would recommend a brand that provides a slow but effective solution?

The vast majority of Twitter and Facebook users want a response within the same day of posting. And yet, lots of brands aren’t picking up on the urgency customers have.

Understanding and Honesty

This one’s harder to measure, but just as important as speed. 70% of the buying experience is based on how a person thinks they’re being treated. Simple phrases like “I’m sorry” can quickly transform a conversation and begin to build a real relationship. If you don’t know the answer yet, go ahead and say so, but just keep in touch until you do.

It also never hurts to use names when talking with people, even over social media. Add a personal touch by making sure to add their first name to the reply or comment. You can also end it by signing your name. That way, people immediately feel that they are talking to an actual person and not a talking wall or logo.

Help Where They Ask for It

Generally, we all want help in the same place where we reach out and ask for it. If a customer asks for help on Twitter, they want their answer in the form of a tweet, not an email. If they post a question on Facebook, they don’t want to be told to call an 800 number. Getting shuffled around is a customer pet peeve both off and online.

Also, it helps to know where online customers are looking for help. Customers might also reach out on your blog, ask questions on another social media site where you’re active or even post comments on forums or message boards specific to your industry. Study your own patterns for each network your customers are active on and make sure you reply accordingly.

How good is your company at responding to messages on social media? Stay tuned for the final blog in the series about how and when to monitor and respond.