When it was left down to writing a letter or actually ringing a brand to complain about them a lot of people would rather sit and stew about their issues rather than, god forbid, risk some human contact. But now sending a disgruntled tweet or posting a terrible experience publicly on a brand Facebook page is second nature. With this in mind, it’s never been more crucial to have someone managing your customer service across your platforms.
Here are our top tips for keeping your fans happy.
• Don’t ignore problems
Complaints (especially when they’re just for complaints sake) can sometimes feel like a chore to tackle, especially when your brand has known issues and specific complaints come in regularly. But it is important to tackle any problems head on before they escalate. So always: acknowledge the complaint, apologise where appropriate and escalate where necessary.
• Have a CS document
It is impossible to predict every problem and issue that is going to arise during a brand lifetime, but having a basic template can make you work more efficiently. Remember to formalise an escalation process for any new issues. This can be especially useful if there are multiple community managers dealing with customers.
• Leverage your influencers
If there is a FAQ or issue that is raised frequently then there is a good chance your influencers have referenced it in the odd blog. Referring other users to this not only gets their query resolved but it also strengthens your relationship with the influencer (remember the @ mention!)
• Establish a tone of voice
By all means tackle problems with the same brand guidelines you already have set out, but its important not too look like a bot. Alter your generic reply wherever you can, if your brand gets a lot of engagement then this can be difficult if you’re stretched for time, but try and switch it up at least every couple of posts.
• Stick to your guns
The customer may always be right, but that doesn’t mean they’re always polite – but beware of the fine line between sticking to your guns and the Cineworld incident…
• Monitor your platforms multiple times a day
The majority of brand disasters have been due to customers not receiving a response in good time. If your hours and staff make it impossible to have someone manning the accounts 24/7 then at least keep an eye on the news/Twitter in general out of hours to identify any potential problems.
• Keep an eye on what the community is talking about
If they aren’t @ mentioning you could overlook this but watch your streams and lists with a close eye, you can get a strategy in place for any issues that are brewing, or jump into conversations if you’re needed – especially on third party forums.
• Beware of scheduling
If you are facing a crisis be sure you don’t have anything scheduled in. A brash tweet or post will only infuriate fans and give the impression you’re not addressing their issues.
• Refer social feedback on
It will make your job easier in the future and create a better experience for fans. Even if your client has no system in place for this, make sure they’re passed on anyway, at least you will look like you’re on top of things….
Over to you.
Do you have any more tips to add? What do you think is best practise for customer service?