Not that long ago, social media might have been an entirely different section of a company’s marketing department. Social media was viewed as a necessary-but-separate way of reaching out to customers and building a brand presence.
Today, call centers are integrating social media as well as other modes of communication into an overall omnichannel customer service program. As it turns out, this has been a popular move with consumers.
The social media trend shift
Social media began as a way for people to connect with friends and family. It wasn’t really seen as a serious business marketing tool. As a generation of Americans has grown up using social media constantly for communication, more and more of them want to use it for all communication.
One-third of the people on social media would rather use it to communicate in a customer service situation than use email or make a call. Two-thirds of the surveyed consumers actively seek help on social media networks.
Even more crucially, when a company engages directly with a customer on social media, that customer will spend an average of 20 to 40 percent more money at the business. These statistics highlight just how crucial social media has become.
Why customers love it
The stats make it clear that your virtual contact center should be able to integrate natively with social media. But to be effective, it’s important to put yourself in the consumer’s shoes. Why do they want to connect with you over social media?
It solves problems quickly
Imagine an integrated call center call through which an agent has the power to instantly connect to the company’s social media account and use it to send a discount to the customer they’re currently on the phone with. Instead of promising that a discount is “in the system,” with the customer having to take an extra step to get it, the whole ordeal is taken care of in an instant via social media. An agent could be on the phone with an individual, switch over to social media, then return to the phone conversation to check if the customer needs additional support. Virtual cloud software solutions, like the ones offered by Bright Pattern, allow for such omnichannel communication.
It’s personalization the way they like it
Personalization has and always will be very important to customer service, but today’s busy customer doesn’t want personalization to interfere with the day. Connecting over social media allows agents to talk to customers one-on-one without the burden of a phone call or even an email.
It’s happening in real time
When your call center is integrated with the company social media accounts, communication can happen instantly. Instead of sending an email and waiting two days for a reply or calling and waiting on hold, consumers can get responses immediately, even if that response is just to acknowledge that someone is working on the problem.
Why you should love it
Social media integration isn’t just something that’s good for the consumer. It’s good for the call center, too.
When consumers talk to one of your call center agents on the phone, they tend to be guarded. They don’t want to give out a lot of personal information and may be suspicious about even being asked. On social media, on the other hand, you can find all the information they freely share with the world and use it to make better data-driven decisions.
Whether you like it or not, people are talking about you on social media. A negative post spreads to twice as many people as a positive one, and anyone who has a bad experience will tell quite a few people about it. If you’re integrated with social media, you are in a position to control the negative and promote the positive.