Gone are the days when we didn’t need to worry about using social media for customer support - these days, it’s not even a question.
According to a report by Sprout Social, up to 90% of consumers have used social media in some way to communicate directly with a brand. The bad news is that brands reply to just 11% of these messages, on average, leaving the majority of inquiries ignored. That suggests that most businesses are still using social media as a promotional marketing tool, instead of a two-way customer communication channel.
In fact, social media has already become the preferred customer service channel for Millennials, and it's growing in popularity among older groups too. What’s more, whenever people turn to social for customer support, they want a response much faster than most organizations are either willing or able to provide. The same survey found that the average time it takes brands to respond to a social media message is 10 hours, though most people consider under 4 hours reasonable.
A version of this post was first published on the Digital Information World blog.