For the most part, Social Media is seen as a marketing tool and while it is true that it is a very low barrier to entry form of getting a company’s message out to the masses…it should not be the only thing that an organization does to leverage the global power of Social Media. When it comes to Social Media and the ability to better service your existing customers there is a very powerful methodology to doing it right…the problem is; in my experience, most businesses fail miserably at keeping current customers happy and focus almost exclusively on either getting me to spend more or to spend in the first place.
In a recent research paper titled The Social Customer Engagement Index 2012: Results, Analysis and Perspectives (registration required) the fine people over at www.socialmediatoday.com really put it into perspective that it is a real challenge to keep customers engaged with a Social Media Strategy once you have won them over in the first place. For me I see it as important to keep them included in what it is that YOU are doing first and what the company is doing second but that is more anecdotal than supported by hard facts of an in-depth research paper.
One area that the paper does identify as a way to build both brand awareness and support of customers is the creation of Social Communities. This will connect both current, past and future customers together and is a way to really get a feel for both the sentiment of your customers but also be able to really draw the path to what keeps your current customers happy and what can draw in new customers.
When we look at the definition of Customer Service, according to Wikipedia:
Customer service is the provision of service to customers before, during and after a purchase. According to Turban et al. (2002), “Customer service is a series of activities designed to enhance the level of customer satisfaction – that is, the feeling that a product or service has met the customer expectation.”
So what do you plan to do both as a company, a professional and a brand to start to fit the series of activities into your routine? How can you make the move towards an always on, 24/7 connection that is there to support those who really support you and your business?
Chris J Powell