Who said being a small company keeps you away from the social customer care party? Not at all. Being small makes you more flexible and able to respond faster to changes because you can easily adapt your processes and rebuild your corporate culture. While you are looking for “your own path”, take inspiration from this top advice from the some of the social media customer service pioneers:
1. Start by listening.
Yes, it is as simple as that. Listen to what people are already saying and asking for. There’s no better way to tune into what your customers like and what they don’t like than by listening to them. This simple exercise will also let them know how much you care about their opinion and satisfaction. Not considering their feedback is ignoring a big opportunity to improve your services and products. So, start training yourself and your staff to listen attentively to customer feedback and capitalize on its value.
2. Make it simple.
Don’t expect your customers needs to fit into your internal processes. Instead work on breaking down the barriers that prevent your operators from effectively solving their problems. You can start by reviewing your internal processes, going in depth into the route that your customer have to follow to get their queries resolved and focus on identifying the critical areas where your customer get caught. And please remember that in order to evaluate your “customer friendly index” you will need to test the process from your customer’s point of view.
3. If there’s a problem, don’t pretend to be deaf.
Ignoring your customers misadventures, doubts or opinions won’t resolve the situation. Instead, prepare for every possible scenario by giving your staff all the information they need to deal with support issues, especially in hard situations, by defining your crisis management protocol. Train your staff on how to handle difficult situations and how to transfer this information to your customers. If you succeed in making them feel valued, there is a big chance that you will be surprised by their potential to help you spread your messages to other customers.
4. Assign people in charge and invest in them.
It is not a mission impossible but in order to succeed you’ll need to dedicate time, resources and a consolidated team to stand in front of your social media channels. You can’t expect your new social media customer care strategy to drive itself. Committing to preparing and engaging your staff is a necessary step. This process basically starts by offering them proper training, not only in the different social media platform features, but also on improving their conversational skills and their collaborative aptitude . Empowering your employees and making them feel trusted will increase motivation and productivity, besides it will also help facilitate knowledge sharing and alignment between departments.
No one says it will be easy, but avoiding making these changes today, can make it harder for you to move into tomorrow. Remember your customers are already pretending that their favorites brands are listening to them in the social world, so prepare yourself to get results and to know how to build a new culture that allows you to successfully participate in this new scenario.