Ready or not, customers are moving to social media, either because they’ve had trouble contacting you on other channels, because they like the convenience, or because they want their voices to be heard. Is your organization listening?
According to a new study from NM Incite, a joint venture between Nielsen and McKinsey & Company, nearly half (47%) of U.S. social media users today now actively seek customer service through social media, and for the organizations that deliver, there are increasing rewards. Customers who receive a quick and effective response are three times (71%) more likely to recommend the brand, compared to just 19% who will still recommend the brand if they don’t receive a response.
So how quick is “quick”? According to the 2,000-person poll, 83% of Twitter users and 71% of Facebook users expect a customer service response from a brand within a day. More than 50% of Twitter users expect a response within two hours. And that’s precisely why organizations need to be listening. Because the window for an expected response on social media is getting smaller, and because an unanswered customer service question can often lead to a social media complaint. The State of Social Customer Service report notes that one negative customer experience posted in public has the effect of canceling out five positive customer service messages.
“What we’re seeing is that customers are turning to social media channels for customer service, regardless of whether and where a particular brand is actually equipped to handle customer service over social media,” said Gadi BenMark, Senior Vice President of NM Incite’s Advisory division. “Today’s customers choose when and where they voice their questions, issues and complaints.
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“They don’t care if a company is set up to answer customer questions on Facebook, or if it has an actual Twitter handle for customer service. The implications are enormous for brands that are not implementing effective social care. There is also a great upside for those that understand that the lines between marketing and customer service are blurring, and take action to organize, operate, and manage performance in this new merged world.”
So how are companies doing when it comes to answering the customer service call? The survey reports that of the 2,000 surveyed, only 36% reported having their issue solved quickly and effectively; 14% said the company engaged quickly but did not solve their issue; and 10% never received a response.
“The data is compelling and tells us that effective social care can give brands a big advantage,” said BenMark. “When you consider the span of friend and family networks who can view the positive or negative social care interactions, the effective reach of a well-executed response can be much bigger than you think.”