The bottom line for every company is to get more business and all efforts are geared towards activities that can fulfil this ultimate goal. The customer experience teams along with other departments within the organisations implement creative tactics and advocacy programs to increase customer satisfaction and loyalty to create stickiness towards the brand. One of the ways for doing this is by leveraging social media to maintain a touchpoint across a number of devices and channels to create an end-to-end customer journey. Read the blog post to know how brands can increase their advocacy through social media.
1. Show an authentic brand image
Highlighting the brand’s values, personality and culture in communication with the audience can develop trust. For e.g. sharing employee team pictures and behind the scenes, happenings can induce emotions in customers in terms of belonging improving the overall trust and customer experience.
2. Talk to your fans and customers- Ask them what they value!
Before launching a campaign or promotion on social media, understand the pulse of your fans. Create short posts asking for their opinion and ideas and implement those in bigger campaigns, products or services, which can make them feel special and heard. Such tactics not only generate repeat customers but also establish a relationship and increases their CLV.
3. Make each one feel special
Every customer is an asset to the business, in the socially connected world, the loss of one leads to the loss of many. Be sure to connect with customers on an individual level and social media can be a great way. A simple reply to every tweet/message, which is not only a complaint but also a compliment, can go a long way in creating a trusting bond of friendship between the brand and the customer.
4. Adopt a multiple channel approach
Most businesses segment using demographics as one of the main characteristics and with the growing number of platforms within the social media space brands must analyse the platforms they should penetrate that best suits their audience. Brands must be equipped to engage and respond with resources skilled at answering queries and complaints at any time and at any channel. Various engagement tools are now available that integrate all handles within one platform with task allocation feature for easy management.
5. Don’t sell but educate
The advent of digital has changed the mindset of the connected consumer. The push marketing strategy from yesteryears has been taken over by the pull strategy changing the dynamics of promotional content. Brand delivering a constant stream of adverts can impact the customer experience and disenchant the customer. A mix of content from other sources, user-generated content, sharing company news and culture, asking for feedback and questions are all ways to invite customers towards the brand.
6. Showing gratitude via social
To gain a true edge over the competition and to keep customers happy brands must show signs of appreciation towards their customers. Proactively reaching out, commenting, acknowledging their messages, sending small gesture tokens like personalised vouchers and discount codes on their favourite items can all boost happiness level and proportionately the traffic on the sources.
7. Promptness in communication
The On-demand generation expects ‘instant’ communication and ‘instant’ results. Social media is a way to cater to this changing customer attitude. Setting up a step-by-step company program on how to handle complaints on various social channels and the approach to be taken to solve their problems has become key. By incorporating engagement and listening tools, some of our Meltwater’s clients have been able to reduce response times, keep a track of conversations and the frequency at which customers reach out to the business.
8. Employee advocacy to enhance social presence
Employees are the company’s best advocates and involving them in communication can showcase the brand’s values and imply a ‘We care’ attitude. Brands like Cisco have an employee advocacy program having over 1300 members that are given guidelines and support to amplify the company’s messages through social networks and get the word out about products, services, culture etc.
9. Using social media as a research tool
Social media until a few years ago was a communication medium but with the increased maturity level of the customers and the advancement within these platforms, businesses can benefit from social media in other ways. It can be used to understand problems in the customer journey and a channel for improving customer experience. The volume of content and organic conversations on social media allows data to be converted into a research opportunity highlighting problems and allowing ways to improve satisfaction levels. This is not only limited to the company’s social media handles but also external sources such as discussion and complaint forums. From content sharing to reputation management, social media covers multiple businesses uses if leveraged properly.
10. Monitoring the social media ecosystem
Stats depict that 96% of online brand conversations happen outside of their official social channels. For brands to offer great customer experience and loyal customers, they must monitor the social ecosystem from outside other than their internal sources- we call this the ‘Outside Insight’. With the help of sophisticated listening solutions, brands can monitor this dark space that houses most of the customer reviews, complaints and feedback. It’s not always essential for a customer to tag a brand in their conversations, therefore, monitoring keywords in this vast space is a must to see the actual brand mentions allowing the right brand analysis and customer experience reports.
A McKinsey report suggests that the move to social can instigate a paradigm shift in customer satisfaction, lower cost and increase the net promoter score if leveraged correctly. Use the above tips to incorporate social media to make an impact. Let your customers do the talking, while you reap the benefits!