Building Relationships with Social Media Monitoring
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Relationships take work. When both people put the time in, the relationship blossoms into a healthy, mutually beneficial experience. This same concept applies to relationship building and customer service in the business world. Use social media monitoring to leverage opportunities to make more productive interactions with your customers. When they see you care about what they have to say, their brand loyalty will only increase. Take a look at the following ways you can strengthen relationships and customer service opportunities.
When customers or other companies positively mention you in their social media posts, you can use this content as an opportunity to build a stronger relationship with them. You not only give them affirmation when you share their content that mentions or relates to you, but also attract others who might be interested in similar content. In other words, you’ll be strengthening current relationships and opening the door to more.
Social media monitoring allows you to find these mentions, evaluate whom and where they’re coming from, and respond to them faster. And monitoring mentions doesn’t just include users who tag you directly—you’ll be notified even if they just post a URL to your site. Sometimes these mentions will be users posting successes about using the product or how your service has made their life easier. Other times, they might be expressing frustration with your company, so monitoring allows you to act fast, as if you’re a virtual customer service respondent. Never miss a beat when you monitor social media mentions.
Take the interaction that’s possible in mentions, and kick it up a notch! You can do this in a variety of ways, including monitoring the most influential posters in your industry or location; reach out to them in order to create a relationship in which they can help promote your brand. Some of these users might even get the word about your business all the way across the world to followers in other countries that have yet to see your product—and with social media monitoring, you can track that. Interact with these current and potential followers in order to give them a genuine, personable experience with your brand.
Because social media monitoring allows you to respond to people in real time, it can help keep your responding time consistent and will keep you alert should any problems arise. Wendy’s has become quite the master at this concept. Wendy’s social media monitors respond to users around the clock, and they have a special sense of humor that has grabbed the attention of customers, media, and avid Twitter users. For example, when a user asked Wendy’s where the next McDonald’s is, Wendy’s promptly replied with the humorous response of, “delete your account.” While this approach isn’t for everyone, the consistency of tone and reply has made it a successful, interactive experience that has garnered a lot of conversation about the brand. When you give them something to talk about, and then use social media monitoring to manage interactions, then you’re well on your way to creating a trustworthy relationship between you and customers.
Social media is the future of customer service. “A growing number of customers expect real-time responses from their service providers,” says Richard Eldridge, CEO of Lenddo Limited. “When customers are not happy with the service they are receiving and want to vent their frustration, they increasingly turn to public channels, aware that no company wants the negative publicity. Thus more and more banks and insurance companies are adding social media (usually Twitter and Facebook pages) as a permanent channel for retail customer interaction . . . .” If you choose to use social media as a customer service tool, like these banks and insurance companies and other businesses, then monitoring your pages will help you avoid leaving customer service questions unanswered. Monitoring lets you see beyond the simple interaction and into the stats, such as how many people one person’s post has influenced. This helps you prioritize your time and understand the impact of each post. You’ll rest assured knowing all your bases are covered, without having to manually oversee each platform, tab, and interaction. Plus, when others see your responses, you’re allowing yourself to publicly control your brand image. Long story short: it’s a lot more convenient than putting a customer on hold.
Anas Kazi, founder of the travel agency Holiday Mauritius, uses social media to personally engage with his customers. “Even though the Twitter feed of the company consists mainly of tweets that market their services, Twitter is at the same time the most important marketing channel of Holiday Mauritius. By actively searching the right hashtags keeping in mind the goals of the company and reacting to these tweets, the company is much closer to a potential customer than on any other marketing channel.” What would make his strategy even more effective? A social media monitoring tool that allows him to be notified of these questions in regards to his agency, rather than requiring him to scour his feed for applicable mentions.
Every relationship needs a little TLC. Take care of each relationship and customer service opportunity through social media monitoring.