Customer Service and Social Media: Our Love/Hate on this Growing Relationship

Alison Baldea
Your Social Move Digital Community Manager, Your Social Move

Posted on December 15th 2012

Customer Service and Social Media: Our Love/Hate on this Growing Relationship

Customer Service and Social Media: Our Love/Hate on this Growing Relationship

Long gone are the days of calling an automated customer service hotline, only to listen to stale elevator music and stay on hold for half an hour. Now, brands are expected to address issues as they arise online. While this is great for the customer, many brands are left feeling uneasy about this change.

Here are our thoughts on developing Customer Service on Social Media:

Love: Brands can address issues promptly to diffuse the situation

  • If a customer is especially upset, addressing the problem and then taking the conversation offline can resolve the issue.
  • Always offer an apology. The best way to ensure a return visit or purchase, however, is to accompany that apology with a reward of some sort.

Hate: All negative comments are revealed, leaving your brand’s downfalls exposed to the public

Love: The public nature of a brand’s reputation, both online and through word-of-mouth, forces brands to be proactive in the image they are portraying in the community

  • If your staff knows that their poor service will go noticed, this could provide enough incentive to prevent future problems.

Hate: Social Media platforms allow for brands to delete negative comments, which makes it difficult to assess a brand’s trustworthiness

Love: Addressing these negative sentiments can improve your brand’s credibility and likeability

  • Responding to negative comments quickly decreases the chances of future negativity from the same customer.
  • Other fans and followers will see these issues being addressed and will know that their opinions are valued.

Still feeling uneasy about providing customer service online? Let us help. Learn more about our Social Media Builder Program and how Your Social Move can help your brand grow.

Alison Baldea

Your Social Move

Digital Community Manager, Your Social Move

Increase your sales, profits & reputation with practical social media strategies. We believe digital is only valuable when it's contributing to your growth.

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Comments

Kent Ong
Posted on December 16th 2012 at 8:23AM

But still there are a lot of companies post this on social media - Please contact our customer service at xxxx". It makes people feel frustrated.

Alison Baldea
Posted on December 17th 2012 at 2:42PM

Thanks for the response, Kent; you raise a good point. That's why we feel it's important for customer service in social media to be more personal. Hopefully companies can learn from articles like this.

JohnLuginbill
Posted on December 17th 2012 at 4:10PM

The big release of the Nielsen (partnering with McKenzie&Co) State of the Media: The Social Media Report 2012 was released in December 2012. 

The best social media research to date says custormer service - called Social Care when involving social media - is preferrable through social media to one third of consumers (33%). Over half (50%) said they have used social media to contact a company for complaints, praise, or questions.

The age of social media as customer service tool is here whether we like it or not. 

Qnary
Posted on December 18th 2012 at 6:05PM

Overall, the fact that brands are now using social media for customer service is a good thing.  If your page receives a piece of negative feedback or a negative comment, don't ignore or delete it.  Respond to your customer publicly.  If your other followers see that you are responding and taking care of the issue they will have more positive feelings towards your brand.  It will also help the customer who posted the comment stay happy.