Unfortunately, no matter how hard you try, you can no longer run away from social media. It is, and will be for a very long time, a crucial part in marketing a business online and now part of customer service. Don’t know how to use social media effectively for customer service? Here are 5 great examples for you to follow.

1. Response Time

16 Brands Leading the Way with Exemplary Social Media Customer Service   Ignite Social Media

If a potential customer has asked you a question on social media, they expect a response within 24 hours (just like eMail) however, with social media being in real-time you need to react a lot faster. Some companies have literally, made their Facebook pages a complete customer service outlet. As you can see, a list of global companies take no more than 52 minutes to respond to a question on social media. As a small business, you may not be able to respond as quickly but this just shows that bringing immediacy to actions cannot be ignored.

2. Post Response Rate

To offer great customer service as a business, you should look at post response rate which is the amount of page posts by other that have a comment from your business.

Tescos, the world’s third largest retailer has a 79.20% post response rate on Facebook specifically. They may not have made the list above as one of the fastest responders but they believe in leaving the best first impression with a customer. Their initial posts take longer as they are information-rich and delivered by knowledgeable customer service individuals.

3. Acknowledgements of Positive Feedback

Kyle-Mastercard-CSIThe CSI (Customer Service Investigator) went undercover to see how some of the most well known businesses responded on social media. They looked at Visa and Mastercard. They posted a message on both social media accounts, asking a question. Results showed disappointment on Visa’s end, with no response whatsoever. When looking at Mastercard, they not only retweeted the question on Twitter with a reply, within 40 minutes, they actually had a current customer confirm their international use. This is a great way to show your potential customers that your current customers are happy with your services.

4. Be Prepared

When it comes to using social media as a customer service, you need to be prepared. Have a plan in place so that if someone does write a negative comment, you know how to handle it. Samsunglistened for 90 days before posting anything on their customer service Twitter handle. The quality and tone of responses indicate they clearly know who they’re talking with.

5. Be Available 24 Hours, 7 Days a Week

It can be difficult for small businesses to keep an eye on their social media interaction at all hours but the best thing to do is have alerts set up on your phone so that you can at least monitor what is being said. This will give you time to work out a reply and get back to your customer in a timely manner. As an extreme example, Microsoft’s Twitter account is active 24/7 to handle requests all day, every day as they recognise customer issues don’t always happen during business hours.

Be approachable on Social Media and use social networks as a way of offering your consumers great customer service.