Social media has taken over! The sheer number of users it boasts will tell you about its power and influence in the modern world.
Businesses need to understand the social media dynamics of their customers and implement an effective customer service strategy on these social media platforms to reach them if they wish to stay afloat in today’s market.
Having a presence on social media is no longer an option for businesses
3.2 billion people across the globe use social media in their daily lives today. That comes out to about 42% of the entire Earth’s population! To put this into perspective, it is predicted that by 2023 the number of TV users will increase to 1.74 billion. This just goes to show how big of a number 3.2 billion is!
If we look at social media usage by different age groups we find that 90.4% of Millennials, 77.5% of Generation X, and 48.2% of Baby Boomers are active social media users.
Therefore, one thing that brands need to accept is that, in today’s day and age, for the majority of businesses, most of the customers will be active social media users. So, whether you like it or not, having a presence on social media is no longer an option, it is a NECESSITY!
Another important fact that brands need to know is that if they are not on top of the social media game right now, then customers will simply opt for competitors who are.
JD Power found in one of its studies that 67% of consumers have used a company’s social media site for servicing. This means that no matter what, the majority of customers ARE going to be using social media to reach out to companies. And if a certain company does not have a social media presence, then it is simply losing out on all that customer base.
Why having a well crafted social media service plan is so important
Well then, now that we’ve established the fact that having a presence on social media is mandatory for brands if they wish to survive in today’s market, let’s talk about why having a specific strategy to deal with customer service on these social media platforms is also very important.
Following are just some of the reasons why having such a plan in place is so necessary:
1. All the big players are doing it.
There’s a very famous saying that goes, “if you wish to become the best, you need to learn from the best”.
And if we look at how big companies interact with consumers on social media platforms, we can quickly figure out that they have very well thought out strategies that they follow.
Nike is a big example of this. They have one of the most efficient and effective customer service plans out there. They have a dedicated twitter account that deals with customer complaints and feedback among other things. They provide support seven days a week and in seven languages (English, Spanish, French, Dutch, Italian, German & Japanese). Whenever Nike’s twitter handle is used, the Nike Team twitter account is there to provide help.
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2. If you don’t, someone else will
As with having a presence on social media, having a good customer service plan is also not an option anymore.
42% of consumers expect a response on social media within 60 minutes. This means that by not having an efficient servicing plan in place, brands will be providing a bad customer service experience.
According to Oracle, 89% of consumers began doing business with a competitor following a poor customer experience. This simply means that if you don’t provide a good customer service experience, customers will look for another brand on the market who do which will result in the loss of potential consumers.
3. Having a good plan can substantially increase consumer base
Social media customer servicing isn’t easy, that’s for sure. It can take a lot of planning and resources. But if done right, it can also provide businesses with a lot of exposure and customer satisfaction.
71% of consumers who have had a positive experience with a brand on social media are likely to recommend the brand to their friends and family.
An example of a company that has used social media interactions with customers to their benefit is Wendy’s.
Ever since starting its twitter account, Wendy’s has seen a large increase in its online following with many praising the brand for its frank and easy-going social persona that also translates to its overall image in the public eye. Customers are keen to tweet at Wendy’s in hopes that they get a reply and the brand is happy to respond to engage its customers and build its fanbase.
This rapport building between the company and its consumers makes Wendy’s stand out among the competition resulting in more customers choosing them over others.
In summary, having a social media customer service plan is important for every company out there for two main reasons: to survive and thrive.