If your business engages in social media, you may have noticed an uptick in the number of customers who are posting questions on your Facebook page, tweeting comments or engaging with your company on other social platforms looking for customer service support. It’s a trend that is affecting just about every type of business—and using social media as a customer service channel will continue to grow in the future. So prepare your company to handle social customer service effectively with these tips:
- The number one way to preserve your company’s reputation in the social sphere (and beyond) is to continually monitor your social media channels so that you can respond swiftly to questions and comments—especially the negative ones.
- Create a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section on your company’s website and link to it in your social media profiles (i.e. the “About” area that is available on many social platforms). This will provide an easy way to for customers to “self serve” and for you and your staff to refer customers to “standard” information when needed.
- When it comes to negative comments (and you are likely to receive them no matter how great your business is), no matter how you feel about the complaint, you need to respond publicly, professionally, and immediately. Your objective should be to try to diffuse the situation by acknowledging the customer’s feelings and then to encourage a resolution in private by asking the customer to direct message or email you. Don’t engage in a debate on social media…that will only hurt your business.
Just like in other customer service scenarios, consistency and professionalism are key when you're using social media for customer service. Keep this in mind as you prepare yourself and your team to implement the tips above and master social customer service!