The Social Customer Engagement Disconnect
By Lance Fried
Customers are no longer posting to their social networks with the sole purpose of updating their friends and followers, they are connecting their online social presence with the brands they buy from. It only makes sense that these customers want to contact brands where it's convenient and where they prefer to communicate-- on social media.
Expanding on our post from last week, we briefly discussed the disconnect between where customers want support, and where companies are giving it. Forrester found that customer service satisfaction remains low for social media channels because companies have not yet invested in best practices for managing interactions on social channels while Aberdeen Group found that nearly 1 in 3 consumers prefer to contact brands via social media.
On the other hand, brands are taking full advantage of their social media marketing efforts, realizing the countless benefits of being a social brand. But we are finding that while brands are taking advantage of having a social marketing presence, they are still reluctant to engage with social customers, even when they are clearly asking for it.
There is a clear gap between what customers prefer and the options they are given for customer support, and this gap is resulting in low customer satisfaction. A study by Bain & Company found that customers who engage with companies via social media spend 20% to 40% more money with those companies than other customers. So by ignoring customers on social media, brands are not only decreasing customer satisfaction among social customers, but also missing an opportunity to make more money from the very same unsatisfied customers!
Social media customer engagement is an opportunity to satisfy the customers that want to socially engage with you, which will result in them spending more money with you.