Social Media as a Customer Service Tool?

We all have used (or should be using) social media as another tool to connect with our customers. They love feeling that a company is accessible to them at any moment.  But what about solving issues for your customers via social media?

A trend that has had a slow start and is believed to sky rocket in 2012 is using social media as a customer service tool. One great thing about using social media for your customer service is that it’s incredibly quick and simple.  Responding to your customers and solving issues via social media is not for everyone but it’s something to at least try for your company.  There is a great example I found on Eye for Travel’s site:

  • Holly Burns, Manager of Social Media at Travelocity confirmed that the majority of their customer service takes place on Twitter and in just two months earlier this year, they closed more than 70 customer service cases through social media.

You don’t have to just solve issues with social media, you can also use it to get important news out fast.  Earlier this year when AirAsia had a plane go off the runway, they used social media.  They said they “used Twitter recently to contact their 122,000 followers to calm nerves and subdue additional fears”.  It’s a great way to contact your followers immediately.  If something happens, customers are more likely to check out your Twitter or Facebook than go to your site.

Social media makes following-up easier. If you read our previous blog, Follow Up = Happy Customers,  you know how important following-up really is. Social media makes it easy to ask your customers if they are happy with the service they received and or if they need anything in addition to what has already been done.

There are plenty of advantages to using social media as a customer service tool, there are also a few cons.  The main one to watch out for is making sure Twitter, Facebook, etc. are not your only means to handling issues. Sometimes social media does not allow for enough detail and a regular help ticket is needed. 

What do you think are pro’s & con’s to using social media as a customer service tool?


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