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Due to the fast moving nature of Twitter, it can be very hard to see what it brings to the table in respect of ROI. However if you were to change the way you look at the social media channel and consider it as an addition to your customer service offering instead. It then becomes much easier to understand its value and what can be done to help drive new business.
Some companies will be pained to admit it, but one of the main reason consumers go out of their way to contact brands via Twitter is to complain or raise a concern. Therefore if a customer has an issue with a brand, they’ll no longer spend a morning trying to speak to the CEO or crafting a four page letter, today disgruntled customers will simply turn to Twitter to publicly shame a business in 140 characters or less. However what adds to an unhappy customer’s frustration, is a lot of these queries are not handled correctly or simply ignored by the brand’s social media team.
Don’t believe me? Enter the hashtag #badcustomerservice into the search function of Twitter and see today’s list of unsatisfied customer tweets.
Now of course some social media guru’s will say Twitter shouldn’t be used for complaints and tweets should be on message, but they forget the “the customer is always right”. So if today’s instant gratification consumers want to use Twitter as a customer service platform and this is what’s driving actual engagement, who are we to say they shouldn’t? Especially as utilising the social media channel in this way is much easier to explain to stakeholders.
Now with Twitter, if you do have a complaint raised via the social media channel, you should publicly reply to the customer and politely ask them to Direct Message you the details. This will then show other potentials customers you don’t ignore negative feedback and will allow you to confidentially resolve your customers issue.
Customers are aware things can go wrong, its how you deal with the situation that counts. So once you’ve resolved a customer’s issue, why not check back in with them via Twitter and make sure everything is still ok. This will not only show the customer you care, but there’s no continuing issue with the product or service they originally complained about.
The lack of access to a brand’s social media channel won’t put off an unhappy customer from publicly complaining. All they will do is simply vent their disappointment on a review site or forum. Therefore unless you are monitoring everything written about your business online, it will be very difficult for you to discreetly resolve any customer negative feedback.
By responding with grace to any consumer issues raised via Twitter, potential customers will be more responsive and accepting of other social media content you post. From sales promotions, to encouraging site visits and newsletter sign ups. If your brand’s Twitter content is friendly, honest and helpful. Your followers will look favourably on the account and use it as a modern alternative to word of mouth, as a result driving new business.