social customer serviceLooking from this year back to last, it’s scary just how fast social customer service and engagement has evolved. According to Social Bakers’ social customer care analysis, social media properties monitored by brands were only answering about 30% of questions posed via social media in 2012. Now in 2013, brands have more than doubled their response rate to social questions to 62%. This marks a startling 143% year-over-year increase, and one that other brands that have not yet adopted social customer care should take important note of.

With key CRM analysts like Paul Greenberg, Michael Maoz, Brian Vellmure and Jenny Sussin all noting that social customer engagement is no longer the next big thing but should be embraced as just another part of a brand’s overall CRM offerings, big businesses and organizations should be a little scared if they don’t have a social customer engagement plan in place heading into 2014.

But there’s still time to get started. Here are 13 startling social customer service statistics to encourage adoption:

1. 71% of consumers who experience a quick and effective brand response on social media are likely to recommend that brand to others, compared to just 19% of customers who do not receive a response. ~ NM Incite

2. Consumers 18 to 29-years-old are more likely to use a brand’s social media site for customer service interactions (43%) than for marketing (23%). ~ J.D. Power and Associates Social Media Benchmark Study

3. When companies engage and respond to customer service requests over social media, those customers end up spending 20% to 40% more with the company. ~ Bain & Company

4. Brand advocates drive 33% more sales and 18% more traffic than regular customers. ~ Zuberance

5. The average number of people a social customer will tell about a good customer experience: 42. ~ American Express® Global Customer Service Barometer

6. The average number of people a social customer will tell about a bad customer experience: 53. ~ American Express® Global Customer Service Barometer

7. Only 36% of consumers that make customer service enquiries via social media report having their issue solved quickly and effectively ~ NM Incite

8. 40% of unresolved complaints through social media resulted in phone calls ~ ClickFox

9. 73% of top performing companies identified customer service as a top reason to invest in social media monitoring ~ Gleanster

10. 32% of social customers expect a response within 30 minutes; 42% expect a response within 60 minutes. ~ Social Habit

11. The number of questions asked on brand pages on Facebook has increased by 85% over the last year.  ~ Social Bakers

12. Brands have improved their social customer service response rate on Facebook from just 5% in 2011 to 62% in 2013. ~ Social Bakers

13. Companies delivering customer support through social media achieve superior gains – 7.5% vs. 2.9%.  ~ Aberdeen