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How to Improve Your Social Customer Experience in 10 Ways

Today, social media has become omnipresent. Many firms have established their social media presence, and are promoting their brand and connecting with customers through it. However, only a few have integrated social media with customer experience. Companies that do this well are enjoying a strong competitive advantage.  So, your business should prioritize the social customer experience too. This blog tells you how you can deliver differentiated and exceptional customer experiences through social networks. But before that, let’s get into the basics.

What is social customer experience?

Social customer experience is the interaction of a brand with its customers on social media. It’s a collection of follows, engagements, replies, likes, DMs, comments, follows, and shares across all your pages and profiles. 

Why is social customer experience important?

80% of customers agree that experience is as important to them as the product/service itself. When your brand doesn’t deliver the social customer experience that your customers expect, it results in the following problems-
  • Negative online reputation
  • Low word-of-mouth promotions
  • Slow responses on social media
  • Low customer lifetime value. 
  • Low customer base growth
  • High customer churn
  • High customer service costs
  • Compliance issues
On the other hand, delivering an exceptional social customer experience can maximize your business’ potential by empowering it to listen to, understand, and engage with customers. Thus, it can serve as one of your best customer retention strategies. What is social customer experience  

What kind of social customer experience do people expect to get?

Customers’ expectations have evolved with the advancements in technologies today. Reports have found that they expect the following from brands.
  • Tell them what their brand stands for
  • Treat them like humans
  • Respond to them quickly
  • Talk about their pains/passions
  • Respect the privacy of their data
  • Be consistent across different marketing channels
  • Reward their loyalty with value

10 Ways to Improve Your Brand’s Social Customer Experience

The foremost thing you should do is map your social customer journey. You need to identify the platforms your audiences are on and the way they are connecting with you on them. After this, you can apply the following ten ways to deliver the best CX across those networks. 
  • Make sure all departments understand the value of ensuring a unified social presence

The different teams in your organization cannot operate in silos, responding to customer queries using independent accounts. Offering hierarchical and delayed solutions can anger and frustrate customers. Your firm’s official corporate account and the account of your CX Team shouldn’t be separate and shouldn’t separately address customer queries.  If it is, it will cause delays and confusion. So, get all the departments of your firm to understand a unified social presence. You may need to conduct a short training session on this if needed. 
  • Employ social media to manage your online reputation

Social media has given a platform for customers to share their opinions, concerns, and experiences with brands. This is both a boon and a curse for brands. If people are singing the praises of your businesses, your brand awareness and sales therefrom will shoot up. But if you’re there for the wrong reasons, it can cause a lot of damage. If you’re experiencing the latter, you can resolve issues in the following ways-
  • Respond quickly to address issues.
  • Be honest and accept your mistakes.
  • Post a heartfelt apology.
  • Offer complementary solutions.
  • Launch a dedicated page for customers to share their suggestions (Just like how Starbucks did!). 
  • Tap into your employees’ marketing potential

The most common way in which brands use social media is to create brand awareness, and market their products and services to their consumers. There are also many other things you can do to enhance your social customer experience. For example, turning your employees into social brand advocates.  Use social media to showcase your team’s proficiency. Ask them to share relevant and compelling content that both customers and employees will want to engage with. Rather than focusing on marketing your products, they should talk about industry trends, promote corporate responsibility initiatives, and share thought leadership. This will help boost your brand’s reputation and connect with your audience online.
  • Facilitate outstanding customer service

A study says that 63% of customers expect brands to offer customer service through social media channels. And 34% of them find it their preferred channel for availing customer service. This is because it’s fast and personal. So, start offering customer service through social media. Instead of using marketing automation software for everything, get proactive in responding quickly to customers. Even if you can’t be available on social media round-the-clock, make yourself available during working hours to render quick customer service. And when you are at it, maintain a consistent, strong brand messaging and voice. So, first, determine and define your brand’s voice, tone, and style.
  • Post content regularly without overdoing it

Your customers will love to see you post relevant content that appeals to them. So, publish different types of content such as articles, images, videos, announcements, contests, and advertisements across your social media pages. The key to success in this regard is relevancy.  Customers expect your posts to be useful or informative to them. Else, they will simply ignore, unfollow, unsubscribe, or even stop buying from you. But even if you post highly relevant content, do not overdo it- like posting 5 times a day. Schedule the publishing of your social media posts at a fixed time of each day. 
  • Monitor and respond to social media mentions

As mentioned earlier, social media has given a platform for consumers to praise or criticize brands. Social listening is a vital way to improve your social customer experience. Earlier, we discussed how you should respond to negative comments and concerns from customers. It is also equally important to respond to positive feedback.  It is also a great opportunity to ensure a wonderful social customer experience. So, respond in a personalized manner with a heartfelt “thank you!” message. Be specific and genuine. You can also incorporate some relevant promotions into the response. For instance, you can say something like “Annie, we’re happy that you found your recent Kurti purchase with us great. We’re also sure you’d love our latest collection made available from today. So, do check them out!”
  • Humanize your discussions

Another sure-fire way to enhance your social customer experience is by focusing on creating genuine human connections with customers. Go beyond simply engaging customers by striking free-flowing, informal, and casual conversations. Empower your social CX staff to talk, laugh, and joke with your customers on social media.  A human touch to your brand in the form of an occasional meme, personal story, or funny joke can make the experience memorable for them. This will convey that the brand is made up of individuals much like themselves. After all, no one wants to be always dealing with a big, faceless entity. So, whenever possible, humanize your brand.
  • Target social media for a narrow audience

Unlike widely perceived, not all people use Facebook. Reports say that Gen-Z doesn’t even have it in their three best social media channels. 73% of its adults actively use Instagram, 62% YouTube, and 63% Snapchat. They use social networks mostly for chatting and hanging out with friends, and only one-third of them share images and updates using it. Other generational groups predominantly use Facebook. 61% of baby boomers, 68% of Gen-X, and 74% of millennials actively use it. Unlike Gen-Z, 50% of Gen-X and 57% of baby boomers share images and updates using social media. Make use of these stats to enhance your social customer experience.
  • Take advantage of analytics

Social media channels provide your brand with an analytics page where you can evaluate a variety of details, such as the likes and views for each of your posts, the demographics of your followers, and more. For instance, there is a section called Facebook Insights on Facebook. It provides you with your analytics as mentioned above, as well as hours of the day and days of the week in which your followers are most active.  You should make use of these helpful insights to deliver a great social customer experience, and thus, promote your brand effectively. You’ll also be able to identify and solve customer problems this way. Keep tracking the effectiveness of your social media campaigns using analytical data. Also, measure your data and its progress over time. 
  • Take efforts to adapt

Social media is constantly evolving. Not only do the hottest platforms fade in their glory over time, the formats and requirements of the platforms themselves also keep changing. For instance, earlier Twitter allowed only 140 characters in its messages. Now, it has expanded this limit to 280 characters.  Take efforts to train your social media team to keep up with the changing requirements of the social media networks you are using. Also, keep up with the current digital marketing trends on each platform. For instance, on Facebook, User-Generated Content (UGC) is currently one of the most popular and effective trends. So, keep gaining knowledge on what appeals to users and enhance social customer experience. 

Wrapping up 

Social media has evolved into a platform for brands to deliver great customer experiences. We’ve discussed ten ways to improve your social customer experience. Make use of  these points towards ensuring transparent, responsive, consistent, and well-informed interactions with your customers.  This, in turn, can significantly promote brand awareness, influence customer loyalty, and increase revenue for your brand.
Shivani

Shivani is a content writer at NotifyVisitors. She writes SEO articles, blogs, and guest posts for businesses to improve website ranking on SERP. She follows a balanced approach to the quality of content and its marketing.