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Paolo Fabrizio
December 4, 2016

The Secret Recipe For Successful Social Customer Service

Customer Service recipe

Every December we see a proliferation of articles with predictions for the following year. The funny thing is that you can get some of them until February!

Anyway don’t worry because this post is NOT one of those. I’m inviting you to focus on the present in order to take advantage of it. In fact, when it comes to implementing a Social Customer Service plan, being capable of interpreting the present is essential in order to make the best decisions for the future of your business. Therefore, If you want to learn the recipe to successfully integrating social channels into the customer service, keep read!

1st Ingredient: Timing 

Question: which of the following elements do you take into account when making decisions about your customer services?

  • The rise of new digital platforms as new customer service channels (e.g. instant messaging Apps)
  • New features of existing ones facilitating interactions with your customers (e.g. Twitter welcome messages & quick replies)
  • Your competitors actions and behavior (e.g. as for choosing social channels to be integrated into customer service)

 

Even though these are important options, you need to compare them with the most crucial factor, which is timing. With this in mind, consider that SPEED OF TECHNOLOGY ≠ SPEED OF ADOPTION. In fact brands and consumers have different ways to get acquainted with new digital tools. Sometimes brands embrace them faster and sometimes it’s vice versa.

TIP: don’t be fooled by the speed of technology, since companies and consumers have different process/timing of adoption of them.

2nd Ingredient: Demand

Instead of constantly following new trends, learn IF and HOW they can be beneficial for your brand, and engage with your customers to understand what channels/services they would like to get today from you. Remember, if you don’t provide this information, your prospects will search for it and find it on your competitors’ sites. In the infographic taken from the 2015 Global Contact Centre Benchmarking Report, you can easily detect how different generations prefer different customer service channels. For instance, have a look at the telephone option ↓

global-contact-centre-benchmarking-report

Credit Image: Dimensional Data 

Moreover, according to Conversocial’s ‘The State of Social Customer Service’, 54% of consumers prefer customer service via social channels or Apps. (You can download the full report here). 

TIP: use online surveys to ask your customers which channels they prefer to use (currently), which they’d like to use and most of all ask them in a way that motivate them to answer. Always listen first, before introducing new customer service channels.

3rd Ingredient: Delivery

Last week I attended the Forum Retail, an important event that takes place every year here in Milan. One of the speakers was Alessandro Lazzaroni, CEO of Domino’s Pizza Italy. Well, there were two things in his speech that really impressed me:

  1. He thoroughly explained which channels their customers can use to order a pizza (restaurants, on the phone, via web) and how can they track their order using their App
  2. He did not mentioned the product at all. Not a word about it – just service!

 

As for Social Customer Service, delivery means being capable of replying to customer queries over social networks in a timely manner, with clear/concise language, and managing the emotional side of conversations from the very first interaction.  

Social Customer Service is a spectator sport.

– Jay Baer

TIP: know your market and try to stand out from your competitors by offering an outstanding customer experience.

Your turn

The best recipe for a successful plan includes all the above mentioned ingredients. It’s up to you though, to find the right mix of them to properly meet your company’s business goals.

If Social Customer Service is not yet a priority in your 2017 agenda, you’d better add it before it’s too late. This is not a prediction, this is what most consumers want. Right now.

Have great social conversations.

 

Lead/Featured image: Copyright: ‘http://www.123rf.com/profile_rawpixel‘ / 123RF Stock Photo

 

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Paolo Fabrizio

Paolo Fabrizio is Social CRM, Blogger, Speaker. He is a pioneer of online customer service, taking part of insurance start-ups since the 90's. An eclectic gentleman obsessed by Social Customer Service. Multilingual professional, passionate about rugby and serial smiler
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