Most brands offer dreadful customer service on social media. A study from Socialbakers, a social media analytics company, found that response times have actually
worsenedrecently, instead of improving, as the chart shows. But a few companies are doing great things with social media, and helping to recast their companies as customer-centric organisations.
In several cases, companies facing crises or PR disasters actually came out looking better after using social media to tackle problems head-on.
In a new report from BI Intelligence, Business Insider’s paid research service, we explore how companies are interacting more effectively and serving customers better with a focus on social media, and recreating themselves in the process.
Here are a few examples of great social media customer focus that has created value for companies across industries:
- Dell: The computer technology corporation was an early adopter of social customer relationship management and in 2010, Dell opened up its social media command center to all employees, regardless of their function. By 2011, Dell had trained over 25,000 employees of its employees in “social listening.” These employees now monitor over 25,000 social mentions of the company daily in 11 different languages. This means insights gleaned from social media are spread throughout the organisation rather than being “hoarded,” or remaining undigested in one department.
- Domino’s: A disastrous YouTube video posted in 2009 showed two Domino’s employees mishandling a pizza. After the video went viral, the company launched a massive campaign to analyse public opinion across all social media. After receiving negative feedback, Domino’s made company-wide changes including altering their pizza recipe, aggressively reaching out to customers on social media, and launching a marketing campaign acknowledging mistakes and promising a better product. Domino’s saw a 14% increase in sales the quarter immediately following the campaign. The stock price took off, and Domino’s has never looked back.
- Best Buy: The electronics retailer unrolled a Twitter-focused marketing and customer service strategy built around “Twelpforce,” a system the company created to allow thousands of employees across departments to receive and respond to customer queries via Twitter. While Twelpforce has been a hit with customers, it also gave employees a channel and an incentive to collaborate internally and operate outside of silos (in order to handle customer requests it was often necessary to gather information from other employees.)
- American Airlines: Socialbakers recently began ranking industries and brands according to “social devotion,” or how attentive they are to customers on Twitter. Surprisingly, troubled American Airlines ranks ninth among all U.S. brands (American has a response rate of 94%). Jan Reza, CEO of Socialbakers, believes this has to do with a lesson learned from Superstorm Sandy. Finding they had to deal with a system-wide near shutdown, American Airlines turned to social media to manage the crisis. They’ve remained faithful to social media channels ever since.
Here are some more highlights from the report on social customer management:
- The report looks at data and mini-case studies to reveal the best practices for opening up customer relationship management, and involving different facets of business organisations in this function, from customer service teams, to marketing departments, IT officers, and sales executives.
- The wealth of data on customer desires being generated by this strategy is helping organisations work more effectively, and achieve better results.
- We discuss social customer relationship management’s huge sales potential. The data shows that social customer management doubles the percentage of sales leads that result in actual sales, relative to traditional CRM approaches.
- The report also explores the three main differences between traditional and new social-influenced approaches to customer service and relationship management.
- We explain why it is critical for brands to adopt a social customer strategy, especially as social media and mobile apps begin to mediate more and more customer feedback, purchase decisions, commerce transactions.
- We present the four necessary ingredients of a successful social customer strategy, and mini-case studies of businesses that have paved the way for holistic approaches such as social customer service.
- We’ll answer frequently asked questions about social customer relationship management and what defines it.
- We explain the fact that because social customer management is a strategic stance rather than something that comes out of a box like brand-name CRM software, it has often fallen on deaf ears.
- The report digs into data showing that a social customer strategy will differentiate companies from the pack, which is still woefully bad at responding to customers on social media.
- Boosting leads and customer lifetime value are two aims of social customer management, but a broader goal is to bring customers’ concerns deeper into the company’s decision-making.
The full report provides in-depth analysis and detailed data on these trends, including 10 charts with underlying data sets that subscribers can download and use in spreadsheet format. Subscribers also gain access to ongoing data-driven coverage of social media strategy and social media customer service.
For full access to this report along with dozens of in-depth social media and mobile industry reports and a library of hundreds of charts, sign up for a two-week free trial of BI Intelligence.