6 Ways to Make Social Customer Service a Team Priority

If companies once thought they could ignore the rants on social media from angry consumers, they were wrong.

Every year, the expectation for social customer service increases. And with good reason. Customer service on social media is an awesome way to connect with your customers and resolve problems quickly.

In order to make social customer service a priority, you need to get your whole team on board. And not just your customer support team. Every person in your company should contribute to your customers’ happiness—and you need to collaborate to make it happen.

So who cares, anyway?

Well, your customers do, for one. In North America, 8 out of 10 consumers would pay more for better customer service. And 86 percent of consumers quit doing business with a company because of a bad experience. For every Tweet you ignore or message you miss, you’re losing customers and revenue.

Our blog today—the final installment in our social strategy series with Microsoft—offers simple ways to provide better social customer care, including basic steps on how to incorporate these strategies into the Yammer for Hootsuite integration.

How to get your team involved in social customer care

Your customer service is only as strong as your team’s internal communication. Here’s how to get the communication process started:

1. Share customer questions with subject matter experts

A vague answer might temporarily pacify a customer, but it isn’t really a long-term strategy. Here’s why: because it doesn’t actually help them.

In order to give the most accurate answers possible, identify experts in different departments. Set up a company group for your team members to join.

Using Yammer for Hootsuite? Set up a Yammer group specifically for customer service issues. Take social content from company streams in Hootsuite and share it with colleagues in Yammer groups.

2. Set up team alerts to get a prompt response

Your response time is absolutely critical to good social customer service. According to several studies, customers expect a response as quickly as two hours on Twitter and within one day on Facebook. In general, aim for a same-day response.

To keep your response times speedy, set up alerts in a company email or group so that you can hear back from team members right away.

As an additional tip, consider the timezone of each customer. If they’re on a different timezone than you, you probably won’t be able to get back to them in one day. Make sure you check in and let them know that you’re working on the issue.

Using Yammer for Hootsuite? Get questions answered right away by doing live chats in Yammer with your team groups.

3. Don’t shy away from a good ol’ brainstorm session

While some questions only require a quick response, others will be much more complex.

When there isn’t a straightforward answer, ask your team to collaborate with you and brainstorm solutions together.

You’d be surprised at how much quicker you get to a great resolution—and probably one that you wouldn’t have thought of on your own. Around 86 percent of employees and execs say that projects fail due to a lack of communication and collaboration.

Using Yammer for Hootsuite? Take your social conversations into Yammer and discuss internally before deciding on the best approach to take with your customer.

4. Stay connected to internal issues

Keep a pulse on what’s going on at your company so that you can be proactive and let customers know when issues arise.

It may not be possible to address every question if a system is down or there’s a product recall, so it’s important to update your social channels with as much information as possible. Be clear about when you’ll be giving updates so customers can check in.

Using Yammer for Hootsuite? Stay in the know by viewing all Yammer discussions in Hootsuite and searching for content in your network and groups.

5. Know when to take discussions offline

Not every issue should be resolved publicly. You might be in a situation where you need to collect personal information, or maybe you don’t have a straightforward answer and you need to get more context before you can proceed.

If you’re not comfortable responding to a customer publicly, ask them to direct message you. Be sure to get as much context as you can before asking a subject matter expert.

Using Yammer for Hootsuite? Capture social information in Hootsuite and route it to your Yammer group. Tag the subject matter expert and post your comments. If necessary, have your support team or product specialist reach out to the customer directly.

6. Update your company with results

There are plenty of reasons why your company would love to know what’s happening on social media.

First of all, it’s one of the most direct and honest ways to get feedback from customers. For example, if you’ve just launched a new product or product line and have been getting feedback on social, share it with your entire team.

Second of all, it’s a great way to share in the success of company-wide customer care efforts. Provide weekly or monthly updates with response times and positive results. Give shout outs to team members that go above and beyond to help a customer. Note areas of improvement and ask other team members for their opinion.

Using Yammer for Hootsuite? Post status updates to your company and group feeds (including attachments) and respond to Yammer updates.

Ready to learn more?

Social customer service can make a big difference to your business when you make it a team priority. Not only will you speed up your response times and make your customers happier, but you’ll also increase your revenue. 

If you want to learn more about how Yammer for Hootsuite can help, check out our recent integration.