A whole heck of a lot.
Providing customer service is a real battle. And, as Winston Churchill said, “Generals always prepare for the past war.” So while the commanders of customer service are preparing for users with fixed-line phones and desktop computers, their customers have moved on down the road. Way down the road. Technologically – customers have moved on to smartphones. Socially – they are communicating with their world via social media. Timing – they comment in real time on everything, without waiting to get home.
“Generals always prepare for the past war.” Winston Churchill
Put these together and you realize that traditional customer service providers have a real problems. Customers are demanding faster response times from their favored brands BUT they are leaving traditional communication channels behind in the dust. It’s time to take a real look at providing customer service via social media. Not because it is trendy, but for five very tangible reasons your company can take to the bank:
Sure, the cheapest customer service is when they do it themselves via a self-care FAQ. But when customers require your direct involvement, the average cost per resolved issue skyrockets. At $2, the costs of resolving an issue via social media is a fraction of that from a call center’s technical support ($12 or higher), outsourced call center ($6 and up), chat ($5), or email ($2.5 to $5). (Sourced from Forrester Research, 2009, and Brand Embassy, 2014.)
#2 Easily scalable
A single social customer care agent can handle more than five social media conversations, multiple emails, or up to four chat conversations at one time. You just can’t do that at a traditional contact call center.
#3 Variable forms of communication
Traditional help lines – or even emails – are one-on-one communication. That’s not so efficient. Social media is a one-to-many conversation medium where more customers can observe or take part. Even more, it can switch between a one-to-one private conversation or a peer-to-peer conversation as needed.
#4 Customer insights
Social media offers an easy route into customer sentiment analysis with its complete data and background context. It provides much more affordable information than investment intensive voice analysis.
#5 Public image building
Great customer service can – and does – go viral. A single conversation on social media can reach and influence hundreds of other users directly. Then add in the additional likes and shares for increased impact. This level of sharing just does not happen with calls, emails or chats.
Do you agree with the author? Or do you have other perspective? Join the discussion below.