Social media is a two-way conversation between consumers and businesses, but it remains a poor way to get customer service. The communication breakdown isn’t because brands are absent; most are on multiple networks. However, brands tend to see social as a marketing medium rather than a customer-service channel.
A report from social customer-relationship-management provider Sprout Social examines just how much businesses are losing by not engaging with customers.
The report notes:
While brands view Facebook, Twitter and Instagram as broadcast outlets for pumping out promotional content, consumers recognize these social channels for what they truly are: powerful portals for two-way dialog.
A total of 90 percent of the 1,000 consumers surveyed have used social sites to communicate with a brand in some way. What’s more, consumers reach out on social before all other methods, including phone or email, when they have a problem with a product or service. Messages requiring responses also increased 18 percent over the past year, which indicates that more consumers are shifting to a social-first mentality.
Unfortunately, brands aren’t keeping up with customers when it comes to social-first customer service. Instead, brands only respond to 11 percent of people on social and send 23 promotional messages for every response. On average companies keep customers waiting for a response for 10 hours, while most respondents believe four hours is a reasonable wait time.
Customers are not silent or complacent while they wait around for a response: 36 percent posts publicly about their negative experiences on social, and 30 percent will go to a competitor if a brand isn’t responding. Likewise, when experiencing good customer service, 75 percent are likely to share about a good experience and 70 percent are more likely to use a brand’s product or service.
Download the full report for more information, including strategies for better customer service.
Image courtesy of Shutterstock.