I think it is fair to say that Social Media has hit the mainstream these days but the big concern on every B2B Marketers mind has been where is the ROI? As a result I hear of many Social “science experiments” going on across several organizations that may or may not yield the results the marketer is hoping for. But I believe there is one place that delivers a strong ROI in Social Media and if you follow my advice not only will you conquer social media but you will delight your customers in the process!
Most of the time when I am talking with other B2B marketers they seem to be taking classic approach to social media and treating it like just another media channel posting press releases, sharing events, posting videos and expecting to see instant results like they get with other online media like banners, text links and search. There is no wonder why they find it hard to find a strong ROI with that approach.
Others are looking for a tool to do the work for them and I would argue that they shouldn’t be focused on finding the right tool, they should be focused on finding the right approach!
Enter Social Customer Support …
Social customer support I would argue is the single best place to focus your social media efforts since it can reduce customer churn and increase retention rates faster than any other program I have ever seen before. Listening for and spotting a customer issue, responding to them and solving their problem in minutes using social media provides what can only be called an “exceptional customer experience”.
Don’t take my word for it, a recent Forrester study showed that customers actually prefer a better customer experience compared to everyday low prices and that they would actually be willing to pay an average of 10% more to a company that provided a superior customer experience. Moreover, great customer experiences drive positive word of mouth (WOM) which capitalizes on the viral nature of Social Media. And finally companies that provide great customer experiences have customers that defect less and are more profitable to them in the long term. So why wouldn’t you center you social media efforts on providing outstanding customer support?
Not everyone enjoys calling into a contact center and more and more as social media evolves it provides a choice to your customers on how to interact with you. Going forward they will expect to get support using the channel that they prefer and feel most comfortable using and in many cases that is going to be social!
The downside of poor customer service has been well documented on the web more and more people are taking to the web to warn other would be customers of their dissatisfaction so don’t let that be your company! I never read a Social Media case study that started with “we completely ignored this customers issue they were blogging or tweeting about and everything worked out great” in fact it is always the opposite.
Supporting and retaining your best customers is always a good strategy especially when in B2B where a few customers account for a large part of your revenue. Keeping them happy and engaged with you is easy to do with social media and it turns out that it is the best place to find an ROI as well.