How to select your social customer service channels

31 July 2014 by Dionne Lackey

Social media channels

It will come as no surprise to any experienced social customer service agent that consumers use different social media channels depending on their motives. Contact centres therefore need to focus on integrating the ones that matter most to their customers.

Given the wide range of social media channels now available, it pays to be careful where you invest your attention. As Dominic Sparkes from Tempero suggests:

"We don't necessarily advocate going on every platform possible, it's not cost-effective. We work with our clients to look at where their users are, where they are interacting, then picking the top two or three of those and doing them really well".

As logic would dictate, it's far better to manage fewer platforms properly than to stretch your resources over ten or fifteen platforms, many of which will attract minimal engagement.

This challenge of resource management is especially pertinent for contact centres. What people expect from brands using social media for customer service is changing at such a rate that it can be both difficult and expensive to keep up. If you're running a multi-lingual, multi-channel marketing campaign, customers expect you to be able to respond on all those channels, and in all those languages, very quickly. This requires skill, planning, highly competent management and, most likely, an expensive support team.

Channel choice can also come into play when you are thinking about the types of support you want to offer. Video can play a key role in providing proactive self-service and support content, while peer-to-peer communities allow for answers to more detailed and specific queries to be crowd-sourced.

Twitter and related 'influencer grader' tools such as Klout and PeerIndex can be used to identify more influential customers while Facebook allows for the addition of Tabs that provide opportunities for sign-posting, web-chat or email forms.

While there are many channels to choose from, make sure you are covering all five or six of the major social channels and, ideally, pushing them into one engagement platform where agents can work across them.

For an in-depth guide on how to integrate social customer service into the contact centre, try our playbook.

Social Media Playbook for Contact Centres

Tags: martin hill-wilson, white paper, social media customer service, contact centre, Sentiment Analysis, social customer service