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Is Twitter the New Help Line? – February 14 2012

February 18th, 2012 | Posted by andrew in Uncategorized

social media todaySocial Media Today recently put together a fabulous panel to discuss customer service via social media, especially Twitter.  The panel consisted of Michelle Moore (member of the Customer Loyalty Team at Zappos.com), Carol Borghesi (TELUS’ senior vice-president of Customers First Culture), Alex Schott (manager of social media and multimedia communications at Entergy), and Alyson Button Stone (Manager of Customer Programs & Publications for Desk.com).

In general, customers are frustrated existing lines of communication with companies.  So they’re turning to social media outlets like Twitter when they can’t get satisfaction from traditional customer service avenues.  They expect companies to be there, and they expect a fairly immediate response.  This is a new type of customer.

Online complaints via social media actually give companies an opportunity for awesome.  This is word-of-mouth on steroids.  But responding is quick and easy, and it humanizes the brand.  It offers you transparency and control of your public message/response.  Plus it develops relationships.

Monitoring social outlets can seem daunting.  But this revolution is happening whether you’re participating or not, so it’s better for your brand if you’re there to participate in the conversation. Use all of your resources/employees to cover your social media.  Just be sure to have policies in place to help protect your brand.

Are you using social media as a customer service channel?  If so, what’s working and what’s not?

Stephanie Nelson is Owner/Social Media Maven at SBN Marketing, a Charlotte-area social media marketing firm focused on hyperlocal search results for small businesses. Connect with her on Twitter at @StephanieNelson or @SBNMktg.

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