Some may consider delivering customer service over social as hype. But there’s no question it is fast becoming a key channel for mainstream companies to meet customer service needs. One of the highlights of the Social Shake-Up conference hosted by Social Media Today in Atlanta last month was the previewing of the preliminary findings of the 2013 Social Customer Engagement Index (SCEI), a study which explored the use of social tools for customer service. According to the Index, 15% of companies said 25% of customer service inquiries are initiated over social channels and 27% said it takes them less than an hour to respond to questions and issues on a social channel.
Sneak Peak at Social Customer Engagement Study Results:
The survey study, in its fourth year now, elicited participation by over 1,200 respondents, 18% of whom were from organizations with over 1,000 employees, with 69% based in the United States. The objective of this annual study has always been to benchmark how social media channels are being embraced by organizations in their delivery of customer service.
Over the past four years, we’ve been seeing the steady climb of adoption of social media for customer service. And in this year’s SCEI findings, a whopping 81% said social customer service strategy is integrated into the overall social media strategy of the organization. This solidifies what we’ve heard before: People are relying heavily on social media to engage with companies they do business with – whether it’s to seek opinions about a particular product or to receive help when they have a problem.
Related Resources from B2C
» Free Webcast: Strategic Thinking: Social Media + Social Business Strategy
So the Message Is Loud and Clear
If you’re not already utilizing social media for customer service, it behooves you to reconsider. Is it the new engagement channel of choice, the new 800 number, for the 21st century customers? It may be. However, there is no doubt that it is yet another channel your customers are using.
Social Shake-up and The Customer Edge TV
If you missed the Social Media Shake-up conference and want to learn more about this study as well as see and hear great customer service stories, then join us on Oct. 22 at 11 am ET on The Customer Edge TV produced by The Puulse Networkfor a live “webisode” entitled: At Your Service: Winning the Heart of the 21st Century Customer. Butch Stern (@ButchStearns) and I will host a content-packed show featuring Krissy Espindola, director of Knowledge Management and Social Customer Support at T-Mobile USA; Shep Hyken, an author, speaker and expert on customer service and Brent Leary, co-founder and partner of CRM Essentials.
Be sure to tune in and find out how you can up the ante when it comes to customer service and hear how you can win the heart of your 21st century customers. Register here!
This post was originally published on the Customer Edge.