4 Must Read Tips for Excellent Customer Service on Social

4 Must Read Tips for Excellent Customer Service on Social Jade Furubayashi Blogger Extraordinaire Simply Measured
Source: eConsultancy
Source: eConsultancy

The basis of a strong social presence is a happy community. How do you keep your community happy? Provide a great experience.

Last November, eConsultancy discovered that 72% of customers expect complaints on Twitter to be answered within the hour. That is a big expectation. Christopher Ratcliff from eConsultancy just published a study of the UK’s 20 top retail brands, in which he tested their speed, responsiveness, and helpfulness.

Below are four of the most impactful stats from Ratcliff’s study, accompanied by some of my advice to community managers.

icon-stats-figures85% of brands responded within a few hours

If a question comes in via social media, answer it. 85% of these brands hopped on it right away, which is exactly what you need to do. You’re on the other end of that Twitter handle for a reason; to keep your audience happy and healthy. On a busy day, some questions can get buried in your feed. But, it’s absolutely crucial to keep scanning your feed for questions, complaints, or any causes for concerns.

Pro Tip: If you miss an opportunity to answer a question and the user tweets at you again (this time a little bit agitated), apologize profusely and remedy the situation! You’re only human; every now and then something will slip by you. Just be sure to work as hard as you can to fix any problems that arise.

icon-stats-figures70% of brands responded within one hour

Being prompt on social media is crucial. However, community managers obviously need time to sleep, eat, troll Buzzfeed, etc. Nobody expects you to be “on” 24/7. That would be unrealistic. However, you should always do your best to respond as quickly as possible. Nothing impresses and pleases a customer more than being made a priority.

Pro Tip: Keep a list of canned answers to common questions on your cell phone. That way, if a disgruntled customer complaint comes in at 8:30 p.m. on a Friday night, you don’t have to scramble to respond promptly in between drinks. 

icon-stats-figures50% of brands responded with a personalized reply

This is a little bit Community Management 101, but it always has to be emphasized. On social, nobody wants to talk to a robot. Granted, you don’t have to work in their favorite color or movie into your response, but at the very least you should address them by name or sign off with yours.

Pro Tip: Work a GIF into your customer service interaction. A little humor is a great way to placate an otherwise routine interaction.

icon-stats-figures65% of brands’ responses satisfied the customer

This is statistic is slightly troubling, but also not unexpected. As a community manager, you should strive to keep your audience as happy as possible. However, you can’t keep everyone happy. Often times, customers gripe with something that you can’t change — whether it be a policy, a price, etc. All you can do is provide them the best experience possible.

Pro Tip: Don’t let the haters get you down.

To learn more about Twitter best practices for customer service, download our full study of the Interbrand 100 companies that use Twitter for customer service.
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Jade Furubayashi

My name is Jade and I'm the Social Media Manager for Simply Measured. We can find common ground in Beyoncé and Chipotle burrito bowls.