According to a recent report by Kcom, businesses are increasingly turning to social media to help shape the future of their customer services strategy. The report found that Social media monitoring has tripled in the last year: Kcom and CCA research undertaken in 2011 showed that only 20% of organisations were actively monitoring social media. Their latest research, completed in 2012, reported 72% of businesses were now monitoring social media; as more start to understand the power of social media and its level of influence, this will continue to increase.
The report found that the evermore demanding customer is now armed with the ability and tools to rate their customer experience and share it with a global audience. They are comfortable with sharing both good and bad experiences, in the hope that their intended target sits up, takes notice and responds accordingly.
“Face to face doesn’t have the same impact. Voicing concerns and enquiries publically generates a better response.” says Mark Pritchard, Business Development Director at Kcom. “Therefore businesses need to have the ability to manage negative responses on social media – a complaint isn’t always a terrible thing. If an organisation responds and acts upon the comment, it can actually create a good customer experience. It is also a great way to share positive comments and reviews to a wider audience and these reviews can be used to generate more business.”
The report found that sixty eight per cent of businesses use social media as an opportunity to engage with customers. Around 89% use information gathered from monitoring social media to help refine and develop their customer service. According to the report, 90% of industry experts who used information gathered from monitoring social media said that it also helped them manage their brand and reputation. Also, 66% of industry experts have trained their staff in using social media so that customer experiences can be logged and improved.