Savvy businesses have long understood the value of social media networks as customer service channels. They know that customers increasingly voice their concerns and comments about a brand on their social network of choice, and being able to find these comments – and respond if necessary – can go a long way toward increasing their credibility and brand advocates.
While the customer service aspect of social media has long been understood, few features have actually addressed or improved these capabilities outright. But no more. Last month, Twitter announced two new features that allow brands to embrace their customer service and help features on the network.
Twitter’s New Response Timer
The first of Twitter’s two updates will be familiar for any marketer who also has a presence on Facebook. Beginning immediately, the network will enable marketers to show both their hours of availability to respond to tweets, and the average time it takes them to respond to a Tweet in which they’re directly mentioned.
Response time is becoming an increasingly crucial metric in interacting with your audience on social media. In fact, a 2014 study showed that no less than 72% of customers who complain on Twitter expect a response time in one hour or less. If you can show your audience that your average response time is within that range, you encourage comments that will ultimately help you improve your business and customer service.
Showcasing your response time and availability on Twitter also helps you set clear expectations for your audience. If a customer is frustrated and voices their complaint, waiting for an answer will only make it worse. The more they know about the time you can get back to them, the easier it will be for you to diffuse the problem.
Understanding the New Badge
In addition to the aforementioned change, Twitter also began allowing brands to add a ‘provides support’ indicator that appears as a badge and a written tag anytime a member of your audience searches for your account. This feature will be especially beneficial for businesses who maintain multiple social media accounts, one for promotion and the other one for help and customer service.
As the first change, the second is specifically designed to set audience expectations. As Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey explained to Mashable,
We’ve always seen a huge appetite for customer service, whether that be praising brands or complaining about a particular service, where a brand can actually turn around a conversation completely. We think there’s a lot of potential to make this a whole lot easier.
Why You Should Embrace Customer Service on Social Media
Above all, Twitter’s new embrace of customer service capabilities is an obvious sign: the network has begun to understand just how important it is for businesses to address the comments, questions, and concerns their customer voice on the network.
By taking these steps, Twitter has established itself as the go-to customer service platform for both consumers and brands in one fell swoop. For your business, that means one thing above all: embrace helping your customers on the network.
As you probably know, social media should be used for more than simply posting promotional content to an audience of disinterested followers. For maximum effectiveness, you also need to actively find users who are talking about you using a social listening strategy, and address any concerns before they become major problems and go viral.
How actively are you searching out customer comments, and how well are you taking advantage of the ability to improve and optimize your customer service using digital channels? Social media offers an undeniable capability to do just that, and Twitter’s new features just increased the possibilities even further.
Of course, effective digital customer service requires a thorough knowledge of social media, particularly Twitter. To learn more about social media marketing, and how it pertains to your customer service efforts, contact us.