6 Ways You Can Use Social Media As A Customer Service Tool

Many business owners have learned to incorporate social media as a primary part of their customer service systems. This is down to the fact that a lot of customers nowadays prefer contacting companies through their social media pages instead of calling them directly.

Moreover, netizens love raving (or ranting) about their experiences with certain businesses. This could be a big deal if you’re starting out in the industry and want to establish a good reputation.

As award-winning marketer and author Danny Brown once pointed out:

“90% trust peers on social networks (even strangers); only 15 to 18% trust brands.”

Here’s how you can make the most of your social media as an effective tool for supporting and retaining your customers:

1. Respond to comments

Interaction is the heart and soul of social media. So, when users leave a comment on your page, they’re probably expecting to get a reply. Being responsive helps you show customers that you care about what they have to say about your brand, whether it be positive or negative.

“If you answer questions and address problems promptly, you’ll build trust,” according to Grammarly. “Remember, your answers are one of your most effective tools on social media.”

When replying, tag the customer’s name so they don’t miss your response on their notifications. People will definitely appreciate it if you follow this simple tip.

2. Use a chatbot

Having a chatbot in place can greatly help you streamline communication with customers. There are days when you will receive a lot of direct messages and replying to all of them can be time-consuming.  

Programmable chatbots are capable of engaging with your customers by instantly providing them with basic information about common inquiries relating to your products or services.

People today have short attention spans and want to get replies as soon as possible. That’s why chatbots can be of great use for your business. With their help, you and your team will only have to focus on dealing with the more complex customer concerns.

3. Post questions

One of the best things you can do to learn what your customers really think about your business is – surprise, surprise - simply ask. Try posting questions on your social media channel such as how they first heard about your product or service. Maybe you can even ask what their suggestions are on how you can improve or what features they want for your future releases.

Hearing from your own followers can lead to genuine feedback you can actually use to take your business to the next level. Plus, people love it when brands listen to them. That's why this can likewise be a customer service win for you.

4. Know how to handle negative feedback

No one likes getting bad reviews on social media. It’s available for the whole world to see! However, negative feedback could actually work to your benefit if you know how to deal with it.  

When a customer writes a complaint about your business on their wall or your page, take it as an opportunity to right the wrong. Respond respectfully and apologize if needed. Then do what you can to solve the problem. Again, always keep in mind that other people – who are also potential customers – may read your interactions.

As pointed out by Harvard Business Review:   

“Understanding how to respond to online reviews is essential for businesses across all industries. Indeed, 89% of consumers read business responses to online reviews.”

By addressing these comments in the open, you get to manage your reputation and even possibly increase your followers.

For more on this subject, read our past blogs “3 Ways You Can Use Negative Customer Reviews To your Business Advantage” and “How You Can Turn Unhappy Customers Into Loyal, Lifetime Fans”.

5. Do giveaways

Another way you can use social media to delight your existing customers (and to attract new ones) is by doing giveaways.  

When done right, simple giveaways can help you build a stronger fan base and increase your brand awareness. Entrepreneur.com contributor Lucas Miller explained it this way:

“Giving away products or services for free is all about the long-term results. Whether you’re providing customers with an opportunity to essentially ‘try before they buy’ or directly motivating additional purchases, strategically introducing these offers will have a positive impact on your bottom line.”

6. Indicate your contact details

Sometimes customers search for your business on social media to find your contact information. So you want to make that easy for them to do.

Make sure to fill your page up with all the essential details. Indicate your brick-and-mortar shop’s address (if any), phone number, email address, plus website. If you’re using Facebook, you may also embed Google Maps to provide your customers with your business’ exact location - and be sure to update your business opening hours on your Google profile.

Final thoughts

Author and entrepreneur Lisa Masiello said, “Happy customers are your biggest advocates and can become your most successful sales team.”

With these proven practices, you will see that it’s possible to improve the level of your customer service through your social media channels.  

At the end of the day, the goal is to ensure that people have a positive experience when dealing with you online. Of course, that extends beyond that because you also want to ensure that they are treated well when they visit your shop. This means training your employees often so they are aware about their duties and responsibilities. You want to build relationships with your customers.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos once said:

“If you make customers unhappy in the physical world, they might each tell six friends. If you make customers unhappy on the Internet, they can each tell 6,000 friends.”

Good luck on implementing these tips - and good luck with your business!

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