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Posted by on Nov 28, 2012 in Social Networks |

Best practices of customer service in social networks

Best practices of customer service in social networks

It’s not news to say that there are channels of customer service in social networks. Some do very well and make best practices, others survive the truth and the rest should
quit. But consider that not all brands are dedicated to the care
through Twitter or Facebook: indeed, specialty channels have built and well oiled to solve user problems in other ways. But more likely is that, once opened the social network channel that is, users will use to make their inquiries and complaints. So much as we want to have a marketing channel or product, you may also end up having to resolve customer issues.

A few days ago someone told me that the Community Manager is the new name of the customer service representative. At first I was offended: is my job, after all, and I believe that I work in marketing. But in reality, there is much truth in this statement. Users interpret social media channels as a quick way to communicate with a brand, and they have the answers visibility makes it a favorable environment to make a complaint. So when are proposing a strategy of social networks have to consider planning a customer service channel. Next, we will discuss a number of issues we need to consider.

Customer service, yes or no?

I want to highlight some success stories before moving forward with a guide to best practice. Consider this: when opening a social media channel, whether Facebook, Twitter, YouTube or any that we believe, we will be opening the door to a host of comments that can be positive, negative, spam, and more. Among the negative comments we find a series of claims, especially if we are running a consumer account. So this is something we have to plan ahead.

We have 3 options when handling a customer service channel, either consciously or why things happened as well.

  • Distinct networks: we can have two channels, one for communication of things that we think we have relevant and scheduled on a calendar of content, and the other to make the customer needed. If a user asks a question to the standard account, you may be referred to the support account. For example, in Argentina’s social networking presence of Banco Galicia is doubly: the account @BancoGalicia tweeting on bank-related promotions and other information, while @galiciaresponde is an account of help. They have a well-oiled machine that serves as a perfect example of this option.
  • A single network: another option is to combine the two ways of having a presenciaen a single account. It can be a bit cumbersome, and certainly we will need several people to be responsible for managing, for example, Twitter and Facebook. As a “success story” can include the accounts of both Argentina and Movistar in Spain, put the quotes because often take too long to respond and the answers are not at all satisfactory. What happened to this “the customer is always reason “?
  • Channels outside social networks: Finally, what we can do is refer to users who have questions to a phone number or an email where to send. Thus, for example will save resources, because the Community Manager will not have to spend time solving problems, but we will also be generating less loyalty with customers who are more used to resolve their problems through social networks.

Then, in response to the original question: yes. You must have a customer service channel in social networks, primarily because users demand it. It is something we are used to and even start our accounts with another idea eventually is something we will have to consider. Best done in advance in order to create contingency strategies so that nothing surprises us.

Best Practices

The first thing to do when planning a customer service strategy through social networks to evaluate our resources, get goals, and of course try to fulfill them. Then show some best practices when assembling one of these channels.

  • Having a dedicated staff: it is quite possible that, even from the beginning, and especially with a consumer brand, we have an incredible amount of queries. Thus, we can not deal with a single Community Manager above, is responsible for generating the content to be published in the networks. So it is better to have a dedicated staff-calculated based on the number of inquiries we project or based on our previous experience, that can respond to all complaints and inquiries quickly and efficiently. To do this we have put together also a protocol, a document where each of these web representatives find the answer you’re looking for.
  • Having a problem solving protocol: in this sense, social media managers must have put together a guide to follow if they reach certain queries. For example, taking the case of a carrier cell lines to be shown better, we need to know what we must do if it is a line problem, a technical problem, a management problem and others. We also have to have a rapid response mechanism for customers to stay happy and not escalate the situation, and suddenly we find a social media crisis in door.
  • Establish other means of contact with the customer: users are accustomed to speak in his timeline on problems with certain brands, I’m an expert, in order to get a quicker resolution. One of the options to “calm” the user is following and ask continue communication by private message, and can also provide personal data which we can, for example, call or ask another phone representative to call you.
  • Understanding the product: if we do not understand the product, we will not be able to provide assistance. It is therefore essential that we know what we mean to understand their problems.
  • Understand legal issues: another aspect to consider is that there may be legal implications in a complaint. Another favorite is problematic users threaten legal action. Now, for our peace of mind, and promote despair, we must understand what situations can actually sue. It can also serve as a tool to allow the user calmer if necessary.
  • Ensure robust: if we are to make a customer channel, we must ensure that it is fast. So we have to have an action plan, the number of employees needed to carry it out, and coordinate to create a response time that we appropriate. For this reason, all these things will have to plan ahead.

Of course, as always happens in customer service, there may be problems beyond our reach, and not all customers will be satisfied with certain decisions. But the point is, at least in my opinion, always have an answer and to give it quickly and effectively.

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