Turn Social Customers Into Brand Ambassadors

Emineo Media Brand Reputation Management

With the advent of social media channels, customer service has forever changed. Consumers are no longer willing to sit and listen to classical music on hold. In today’s age of hyper-responsiveness, customers expect instant responses from support reps on very public online platforms.Emineo Media Brand Reputation Management

Instead of shying away from social media, smart businesses will leverage their social channels to spread a positive brand reputation, to connect happy customers and to step up their customer support efforts.

Consumers aren’t eager to blast negative messages about your company – unless your brand is unresponsive. I recently learned at an IBM conference that customers are five times more likely to post something positive than negative, and that companies usually have at least 10 warnings before someone posts a negative comment.

Happy customers who get their issues resolved tell an average of four to six people about their positive experiences, according to the White House Office of Consumer Affairs. It pays to treat your customers well, not only for the repeat business, but also to gain the positive word-of-mouth consumers now broadcast across social media. Satisfied customers can become your most influential brand ambassadors. They’ll help to answer customer service questions posted online and also tout their own positive experiences with your business.

Here are the five best ways to turn customers into brand ambassadors through customer service.

1. Be Fast

When a customer turns to social media for a support issue, he expects a brand to generate the fastest response possible. According to a recent UK study, 25% of social media users expect a response within one hour, and 6% expect a response within 10 minutes. If you allow a support issue to dangle for too long, you risk being perceived as a company that either doesn’t know the answer or doesn’t care enough to reply promptly.

Remember, most people on social networks aren’t itching to post negative comments. They only do so after a bad experience. Therefore, don’t give them enough time to have a bad experience.

2. Be Visible

Private and direct messaging on Facebook and Twitter is all well and good, but when it comes to customer service, it’s best to be totally transparent and visible. The answer you give to one customer could, in turn, help thousands more. Think of each post and interaction as a resource that future customers can reference. Not to mention, customers will be more apt to direct friends to your page with their own questions.

Social media sites foster an online community around your brand. Watch how customers discuss and respond to your products so you can join the conversation and better understand the community that supports your brand.

 

3. Be Consistent

It’s vital that you ensure all customer support answers remain consistent across the web and across all social channels. If a common question is posted on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, then each response should communicate the same solution. Conflicting answers create confused, unhappy customers. Just as people expect consistent experiences with your products, they also expect consistent service across all of your channels. Brand accuracy drives confidence and credibility, and helps build brand loyalty among your customers.

4. Be Organized

If consistency creates brand ambassadors, then being organized is equally paramount. Admittedly, the cross-company integration and management of social media continues to be challenging. Maintaining a successful social media presence on just one network is a full-time job. Trying to do it over multiple networks is impossible if your support staff isn’t properly organized.

Customers can spot disorganization a mile away, especially online. However, if you demonstrate that your company support knows what it’s doing, you’ll earn the respect and trust of brand loyalists. Organization goes beyond knowing who does what on the support team; it’s also vital that everyone on the team is on the same page. Each team member must know where to seek reliable answers, and each must source information from the same place.

5. Be Human

As cool as Siri is, she still hasn’t crossed from digital assistant to human entity. Until then, your social media customer support should remain as human as possible. On the bright side, social networks already take the formalities out of conversation. It’s one of their biggest draws.

Therefore, a customer’s name isn’t “Inquiry #83kd4z.” She’s Christie from Denver. People respond best when they feel like they’re talking to other people. Your customer support should make customers feel as if they’re posting a normal question on a friend’s wall. Creating that kind of relationship with your customer should be the priority of any company.

Using customer service to create brand ambassadors isn’t the Herculean task it once was. Social media is presenting countless opportunities to turn your company’s support system into an open, interactive community, where customers can share their positive experiences with one another and spread the good word about your products and services – all on your behalf.

Source Mashable

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Facebook Still Top Social Marketing Venue for SMBs

US small businesses socially savvy, but falling behind on mobile

Interactive Social Media Marketing, Emineo Media, Tampa Miami Web Services Firm

This topic should be taken as an urgent reminder that as you approach any website redesigns and enhancements, ensure you include a plan to address mobile user’s viewing pleasure. Just making your site mobile capable doesn’t guarantee a good experience; in many cases it can (and does) mean a frustrating experience. Discuss with your developer in great detail how your site will be experience on mobile. And in the same meeting, address your presence on social media site like Facebook who permit iframes and have your website developer include a corresponding micro-site that will display properly within the frame and enhance the user’s experience.

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Motivate Consumers to share your Brand

Emineo Media Motivate Brand Sharing

How do you motivate consumers to share your brand with their friends? And how do you motivate their friends to become influencers on your behalf? While there’s no sure-fire gimmick that guarantees a runaway success, this article shares 10 steps that can make your influencer marketing program more effective. Emineo Media Motivate Brand Sharing

Step #1: Know your audience.
Not all influencers are equal, so knowing your audience is vital to success. Insight into your customers’ social networks, online activities and demographic data helps you improve targeting and engage people to find out what influences, as well as who is influential.

Step #2: Create a compelling experience.
Want people to engage with your brand? Create a compelling experience around your product, content or offer. And remember to make sure that your experience drives an action in line with your marketing goals.

Step #3: Create a message that sparks a conversation.

You are trying to get influencers to distribute your message through their networks. So put yourself in their place. How would you react to the message, content or delivery method? If you received it from a friend, would you click or opt in? Would you pass it along to your own contacts?

Step #4: Frame your story.
Some people are natural salespeople, but most can use some help. To help would-be influencers develop their influence, give them the framework they need to get started: messaging, content to share and an engaging website they can invite friends to visit. This helps influencers fire up their friends and contacts.

Step #5: Measure, track, analyze and optimize.
A successful program starts with defined strategic goals that align with business goals. And choosing the right metrics is critical. Your analysis should focus on identifying the most active and influential consumers and figuring out what messages are resonating and what is motivating influencers to talk.

Step #6: Constantly seed traffic.
The days of sending an email to a handful of customers and waiting for your program to “go viral” are long over. To drive long-term success, you need to drive steady traffic into your program. Most of your best influencers aren’t in your database — you need to go out there and find them.

Step #7: Make it easy to connect.
The easier you make it for people to reach out to their contacts, the more people your participants will share your program with and the more they’ll have the chance to influence. Make it easy for people to share your content through the channels they already use and be sure to measure and track sharing and success rates. Such tracking will enable you to accurately measure individuals’ influence and the true impact of your program.

Step #8: Tout your success.
Nothing succeeds like success. Once something reaches a certain level of popularity, its mass appeal tends to skyrocket. The evidence that other people like something can boost its appeal — not just people’s willingness to try it, but also how much they like it and whether they’re willing to recommend it.

Step #9: Segment your influencers.
Your program should build an opt-in database of participants, complete with measurements of each person’s influence level. A person’s influence level should be based on that person’s connectivity, propensity to share your content and ability to drive action among the people with whom they share. These metrics will enable you to segment your new list — not just on demographic or behavioral factors, but also based on each person’s value as an influencer in future initiatives.

Step #10: Keep your influencers engaged.
The most important part of any campaign is the follow-up. Once someone has demonstrated a willingness to act on your behalf, keep them engaged. Send the person special invitations, preview announcements and more. Target your calls-to-action to that person’s interest, activity and influence level.

Peer-to-peer conversations are proving to be highly effective at influencing behavior. Your influencers are already talking about you. Joining the conversation is critical to your success.

Source Jane Paolucci

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