It is no doubt we carry a powerful tool in our pockets every single day. Although I can admit it’s slightly sad to say, I would be absolutely lost without my phone. Yes, the calculator and notes apps are incredibly useful, but I would like to touch on how social media apps are also becoming important (and almost necessary) tools as well.
Social media is the new wave in forward-thinking customer service. Social media for customer service has gained significant importance with the advent of digital channels of customer communication.
Customers can interact with their favorite brands and get prompt responses to their queries or complaints with the help of social media platforms. 67% of consumers have engaged a brand’s social media for customer service needs.Patel, S. (2021, June 5). The Ultimate Guide to Social Media Customer Service [web log]. Retrieved November 18, 2021, from https://www.revechat.com/blog/social-media-for-customer-service/.
The quote comes from REVE Chat’s article on The Ultimate Guide to Social Media Customer Service and I would highly recommend checking it out to get further details. I can definitely say I am part of the 67 percent of people who’ve gone to a brand’s social media to get help. I’ve inquired about tattoo price estimates to multiple tattoo shops via Facebook and Instagram. I even initiated contact with my realtor through Facebook Messenger. As someone who’s incredibly busy, it’s been great being able to inquire about anything with a quick message on social media. Not only that, but with the use of Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, brand’s can get back to you in a more timely fashion. I find waiting for a response through Messenger is far less time consuming than being on hold for 20 minutes. Contacting customer service representatives doesn’t feel so much like a chore anymore. Using social media for customer service is just, practical.
One company I would love to point out is Wendy’s. Not only do they help out with customer’s inquiries and problems, but they are humorous as well. It’s obvious that they genuinely care about the connection with their customers, and that will keep people going back into their drive through time and time again. I personally am more likely to continue to interact with and purchase from a company who shows some personality in their responses.
As shown in the images above, Wendy’s is very good about asking customers to DM them so they can inquire about a situation privately. However, they’re also very good about being relatable and using social media for it’s intended purpose… having fun! Using social media as a customer service platform is all about finding the “happy medium” between poking fun and making jokes and getting serious when needed.
Using social media for customer service wasn’t always as great as it is now. I don’t think companies took it very seriously when it first became available. RingCentral wrote an article about 7 bad customer service stories, and the first one really stuck out to me. It was from back in 2013, a Twitter user tagged British Airways in a public tweet telling everyone not to fly with them because they couldn’t keep track of his father’s luggage. The user even went as far as promoting the tweet (which costed him around $1,000) so 50,000 Twitter users could see it. It took British Airways 8 hours to respond. Obviously now we all know that is entirely unacceptable. British Airways’ reasoning was they only had social media support from 9-5am.
Sense then, most if not all companies have learned from those types of mistakes that were made in the past. Now, social media users can get online support 24/7. For the most part I’ve seen brands go above and beyond for their supporters and customers, not just on social media but in general. Word of mouth plays a major role in a company’s reputation, so it’s important customer service reps take the time to support and engage with their customers.
In conclusion, our relationship with companies and brands have completely changed over the last few years. With social media, we are able to engage in less of a professional manner and almost as if we’re all friends. I could see this slowly transitioning into the “real world” as well. The way customer service is handled may be different, but I believe it’s a step in the right direction. Thanks to social media, we don’t feel like we have to take life so serious anymore. Customer service will continue to grow and create a more positive experience for everyone involved.