If you were born after 1994, you don’t need to Google “social experience management.”
You are probably managing your own social experience as you read this article. But you might not know that you are already doing it.
You are a digital native and are already “a-twitter” with words, you already understand the need for an Internet profile, and you already have an online reputation. You have grown up in a world where this is the norm.
To you, companies always do their business online, reviews and social media comments are readily available, and everything has always been instant.
Of course, you have seen the movies, you know about the old days when people would shop in stores, look extensively for products, and search in person for sales, or even (gasp!) look in the newspaper.
What is Social Customer Experience Management?
Business culture has changed rapidly in the last 10 to 15 years. This you already know. However, do you know that companies now need to be increasingly aware of their brand presence, as well as how the voice of the customer affects their business reputation?
Social customer experience management is the practice of handling and improving a business customer’s involvement; by combining various techniques and company resources, companies can use tools to improve customer satisfaction and build brand reputation.
Social media has changed the way business is done today, regardless of how long your company has been in business or what level of concern you have about the online profiles, pages, and listings of your brand. You must pay attention or you lose.
Review sites, blogs, social media streams, and even your own website are all places where customers are sharing their buying experiences and candid opinions. You can no longer control or hide or censor customer feedback, because customer feedback can be found everywhere.
Everyone has an opinion. Everyone is talking online about what they are doing, where they are shopping, eating, going, and they are all open about their customer experiences. And the social-media-driven world of today is not going away, regardless of what the zombie apocalypse people say.
The rise of online review sites
The rise of the online review website (think Yelp and TripAdvisor) is one of the key developments. No longer are you on top of the mountain, blasting your marketing message down to the masses through your megaphone. All of a sudden, the masses are conversing with one another. If your service or product isn’t any good, they’ll out you.
Managing the social customer experience
This is why you need to become an expert in managing the social customer experience. Potential customers are reading these reviews and making their decisions based on what previous customers have said.
You will know quickly when Mary didn’t like her special sauce or if Mark loved your friendly customer service. Everybody’s now a critic. These constantly streamed reviews have a direct effect on your future profits.
Positive feedback from satisfied customers inspire loyalty and can bring in new potential customers. Negative reviews, low ratings, and bad customer feedback, however, can mean loss of customers, directly affecting your bottom line.
Regardless of the sentiment or rating of the review, positive or negative, all of the information must be acknowledged and managed by your company in some way.
Customer feedback provides an opportunity for you to connect with potential and existing customers and improve upon your reputation. Feedback data can also help you understand where you customers are coming from, what their needs are, and even how your competitors are doing with their own products.
Instead of feeling overwhelmed by online reviews, social media comments, and other forms of customer feedback, companies should embrace and use this valuable information.
Embracing Feedback for Social Customer Experience Management
Managers and department heads can use reviews, comments, and feedback to increase productivity in each specific area needed.
Constant customer feedback activity provides information on these areas in ways that foster further development or improvement.
Customers today are frank about their experiences. And they educate themselves before they even shop, use, or purchase. They know what they want from your company and are willing to articulate it.
You need to listen. Business owners can stay ahead and compete by listening to the voice of the customer and making adjustments based on what their needs and expectations are. By monitoring all the chatter about your business, you can also prevent future problems from occurring. If you are savvy, you can even use this social buzz to respond to and address your customers directly, to turn customers into loyal customers or minimize the potential impact of any negative reviews.
Who are these vocal customers?
Do you truly know your targeted customer?
It is essential to be informed about your customers, the ones who are purchasing your services. You must know what their attitudes towards your company are and how they perceive your products and services. Knowing your customer helps with outcomes now and in the future.
The Voice of the Customer is a term that describes valuable data that companies can collect from customer feedback, from online review sites, social media, customer surveys, and other channels and platforms. Capturing and interpreting this voice is critical.
Positive and negative feedback
Positive reviews can be harnessed to help market your company online for you, and reach out to potential customer or clients. Whenever you receive good feedback, take the time to listen, respond, and follow through, in order to stir these satisfied vocal customers into recommending your products and services to friends and family.
Negative feedback, meanwhile, must be looked upon as an opportunity instead of a burden. Yes, low ratings and bad reviews can drag your sales down and discouraging future customers. Which is exactly why you should address this type of feedback. Identify and resolve customer experience issues that may have caused the negative perception and make adjustments in order to improve. At all times, you must stay competitive: follow up, follow up, follow up!
Let the customers see you
“When customers share their story, they’re not just sharing pain points. They’re actually teaching you how to make your product, service, and business better. Your customer service organization should be designed to efficiently communicate those issues.”
How are you dealing with your customer communication right now? Have you ever evaluated it? Do your customers understand your company’s culture? Do your company beliefs match your actions?
This is what customers want in today’s world. They want to be connected to you and your product or service. They want to feel that your company understands their needs. To keep customers loyal, listen to them closely and continue to engage with them. Customers want to be encouraged. They want their entire experience with you to be satisfying.
Employees can benefit, too
Keeping employees motivated can sometimes be a challenge. By capturing the voice of the customer and managing the social customer experience, you can impact employee morale and productivity, too.
Positive feedback helps employees know that they’re doing a great job, that customers highly appreciate the work that they do every single day. On the other hand, negative feedback can identify management issues you may have otherwise missed. It also provides space for a team to challenge themselves and listen more intently to the wants, needs, and expectations of the customers. One team working together improves morale and helps retain employees for the long haul; individuals who are engaged and thriving are even less likely to leave
Social media and customer experience management doesn’t have to be expensive or inconvenient. You don’t have to create an entire army of employees to oversee your company’s entire customer feedback landscape. The tools that are already developed can easily be integrated into any existing company, and leveraging feedback to help your business improve can simply be a matter of using software that directs all information into a single place. No matter what you use or how you craft your program, social customer experience management can make a positive and sustainable impact on your bottom line.