So you want to Engage in Social Customer Service?

All that you have heard is true. If you want your brand to be involved in social media, you must get ready to handle the customer service interaction that goes along with it.  According to a Pew Research Center report, 65% of adults now use social networking sites and recent Forrester data found that 77% say that valuing their time is the most important thing a company can do to provide them with good online customer service. That is great news! Data confirms that being involved in social customer service can give your brand a public voice and show that you are engaged and responsive.  Whether ranting or raving, people love to be heard.

Addressing your customer on a social customer service level can be the perfect way to showcase your responsiveness. Visitors to your page can gain an idea of what kind of service you provide before, or after a face to face experience. Keep in mind, on social media, you’re not just demonstrating your abilities to one person, but also their friends…and everyone else watching. It can be your first, or perhaps, last impression. As always, keeping your customer happy and coming back for more is the goal and a responsive brand presence can be one of the most important keys to ensure that happens.

Your social media accounts can also be used to find some real “social media advocates” for your brand.  Social media advocates are positively passionate about your business. Creating this kind of passion can be as simple as keeping an eye out those who mention your brand in some capacity and then engaging with them, when they may least expected it.  Are they planning to vacation or celebratory getaway to your hotel and remark about it on Facebook or Twitter?  Do they have a large number of followers? Give that future guest a shout out socially and make a note to have your management team welcome them with a small gift or gesture.  Small acts of kindness can go a long way with your social reputation!

Above all, when venturing into the world of social customer service, keep it real! Customers seeking out your brand on social channels are looking for authentic exchanges with real-live humans in a timely fashion, not canned one-size-fits-all responses.  After all, it is social customer service!