Social media is no longer an option it has become more of a necessity. Our recent article on social media pointed out the questions that should be asked before organizations take the plunge into the world of social media. Having looked at that, let us delve deeper to find the answers to some of these questions.
Isn't it a big challenge to handle so much of information?
It is indeed a challenge. But therein lies the opportunity. There is an enormous amount of data that comes out of the social media interactions across various platforms. These scattered pieces when put together can give a unified piece of information. Enterprises will thus have to focus on bringing out a unified social media strategy that combines the results of its social media activities and gives a unified view. This strategy should be such that it aligns with the overall marketing strategy of the enterprise.
The customer landscape is evolving. The young set of customers want to be served in a less interruptive manner and most of the times they try to look for solutions on their own. This means higher chances of customers turning to websites to resolve queries. An interactive website that can identify common problem areas and reach out quickly to its customers can do a lot. Its not only about improving customer service but also building brand loyalty over a long term.
How can enterprises make sense of social media in a tough economic scenario?
The cost pressures are fairly visible on enterprises, resources are limited, and financial performance is more under the scanner. Incorporating social media might be a tough task as it requires additional resources, but the results can also bring in improvements in the overall performance of an enterprise. Andrew Kokes, Vice President, Global Product Management, Sitel, says that there is a direct correlation between social media customer engagement and the financial performance of a company.
How can companies filter out information out of the vast pool?
Identifying the relevance of conversations is the key. What is the message you want to put across to your target audience. It is important to identify the objectives behind the interactions that an organization takes ahead on its social media platforms.
|Sitel Gives a 4-point Rule
Listen: Monitoring social media will give you a feel for what your customers are saying about you and where you may have issues with the product or customer service. Determine how frequently customers are raising issues or trying to communicate with your company so you can assess how important the channel is for your brand.
Engage: Social media is about participation. For businesses, it's also about giving customers a direct route to your company. Set rules of engagement and establish a tone of voice that aligns with your specific business objectives whilst extending your brand's personality.
Analyze: You could be seeing thousands of comments every day so you need to establish a process to track these communications, determine the appropriate response and prioritize.
Adapt: Social media is changing every day, from the launch of Google+ to the increased adoption of mobile social apps, so there is a need to be flexible and scalable. Review your program frequently to keep pace with your customers.
Ultimately, social media cannot be viewed as the single way of reaching out to customers. The importance of phone calls and direct interactions is not going to be wiped out since not everything can be automated. There are areas that still require human intervention and that is something that will remain. Having said that, different mediums like phone calls, social media platforms and Web engagement, when used in a combination can offer a strong customer service strategy. The idea is to understand your customer base and arrive at a combination that works best.