Social Media is Good, But Not AlwaysWritten by Michael Levanduski
January 18, 2013 # 4:10 am # Marketing Insights # No Comments
Social media marketing is a huge industry, and there many people use it in its more traditional form. By that I mean using things like Page posts, tweets from a business Twitter profile, or even just collecting likes as a unit of measuring engagement. These are all the things one thinks of when they hear the word ‘social.’ However, there are a lot of aspects to social marketing that people focus on much less, one of which is customer service.
There are countless brands and businesses, big and small, that have started using social media as their own form of virtual customer service booths. These companies saw that social media allowed them the ability to reach not just a small group of their customers at a time, but all of them at once. So far, using social media as a customer service outlet has been pretty successful for businesses, but it seems that some of them are beginning to change their minds about the thought of using social media in this way.
Reuters has just published an article that details the way some of these businesses are feeling about using social for reaching customer to assist them with product or service issues. Surely, this customer service over social media platforms can be seen as a marketing method, because not only can the customer at hand see the response from the company, but so can every other customer that said company has on social media. So why are they starting to veer away from the method?
Well, Reuters uses Charter, one of the most popular cable companies in the country, as an example of a company that wants to steer clear of using Twitter or other social platforms as customer service outlets.
“We communicate with thousands of customers each day on the phone and in person, and that’s where we’ll focus our efforts,” says Charter spokeswoman Anita Lamont. “While social media is a method some consumers choose to seek help, Charter offers phone and web-based contact solutions where all customers can access resources to provide assistance.”
Essentially, these companies that are deciding to keep away from social media for customer support have not had any particularly bad experiences with it. However, they are simply backing off because they tried out social media, and decided that other forms of customer service were just better for them. Social media interaction with consumers is a heavy and skilled practice, and it is quite delicate, especially considering that it involves a business’s entire customer base instead of just one at a time.
Some companies simply do not share the same talent for social media as others. Some do not share the same philosophy regarding the way social media can work for them, despite the high numbers and extensive growth that it has proven to the world lately. Therefore, brands that do not possess the ability to successfully reach customers or interact with them on social media should just stick to the basics. Just because most consumers are on social media these days, it does not necessarily have to be the best place to reach them. Brands should stick with what they know.