Customers may be turning to social media for their customer service needs, but companies aren't keeping up and 80 percent of customer service queries are ignored on social media. While the data indicated that companies with bigger social media followings are least likely to respond, the fact is that companies need to develop a strategy to address this shortcoming.
1.Respond as soon as possible.
You wouldn't ignore a customer if they walked up or called the store. The same should apply to social media. The main difference is that social media channels don’t shut down when the brick-and-mortar offices close. Whilst not all companies have a staff member available for responding to social channels 24/7, companies should strive to be responsive at all times.
2.Respond to all feedback
Good, bad or indifferent. Despite expert advice telling marketers that social media channels are conversational, many brands simply don’t get it. It’s important to show your listening. If someone took the time to praise your product, your service or an employee at your company, you should thank them.
3.Respond to complaints
More often than not, customers return because of a positive experience. Even if something goes wrong, if you make every effort to resolve a complaint, the customer will still sing your company’s praises. If the complaint is made on a public forum such as Facebook or Twitter, it’s important to respond publicly as well.
4.Respond to all feedback
You never know, someone might have a suggestion for what your brand should offer. You should acknowledge the person for the feedback.
5.Know when to respond individually, and when to respond to the group
In most cases, responses must be handled on an individual basis. But what do you do when you ask a question on Facebook and you get responses from 50 fans? You might not be able to respond to all 50 people and that’s okay, thank everyone for their contributions. You can also use this as an engagement opportunity by asking a question in the comments that encourages the conversation to continue. The key is to make it clear that your post wasn't just shared by some automated robot.
6.Know when it’s time to move the conversation to a private forum
While it’s important to acknowledge a public complaint with a public response, sometimes issues aren’t resolved so easily. Don’t engage in a lengthy public conversation, especially if one side becomes argumentative. Instead, she recommends promptly offering to contact the customer by phone or e-mail to expedite the problem-solving process.