A new year is a great time to re-evaluate and re-examine how you do things. One thing every company can always improve, no matter the time of year, is finding ways to save money and support their customers better.
Social Media for customer support
One way to increase customer satisfaction is making it easier to get answers or resolution to issues. No one can dispute the powerful change social media has brought to customer service, but it still has its limitations:
- Twitter: It’s great for quick, short answers, but does not offer enough characters to have a meaningful discussion or resolve a complex issue.
- Facebook: While you can write longer posts, they can get lost in the shuffle on a company page. There is also no easy way to search or find similar issues. and there is a lack of categories.
- Google+: Not many brands are using Google+ but more companies are looking to use it. Google+, though, still faces many of the the current challenges seen with Facebook . Google tries to auto-tag posts, but it’s far from the clean organization a community will have with categories.
Another weakness of social networks is that they do not serve well as a knowledge-base.
How A Customer Community Can Help?
Where the social media networks falter is exactly when a customer support community can help. It can achieve the dual goals of offering better customer experiences while also saving money for your support needs. Here are just some of the benefits of a customer support community:
- Crowd Support: Customers can answer each other’s questions. It’s like crowd-sourcing some of your customer support.
- Public Connections: A place where customers can engage in short or long conversations. In some cases even attach documents, if needed.
- Private Connections: Easy to connect privately to take issues offline if needed
- Speak to many: One answer from your support team can answer multiple people with the same question or issue.
- Searchable: Users can find similar issues easily and hopefully find an answer without having to contact your team.
- Brand Engagement: Customers develop a sense of belonging in a group built around your brand. This is a valuable marketing asset.
- Customer Satisfaction: Self-service customer support can lower the time to resolution and make for happier customers.
- Feedback: Your company can learn the pain point in your products, areas for improvement and use insights for training or marketing purposes.
Deploying a customer community is a win-win. You can improve the level of customer service and save on costs by deflecting tickets from other, more expensive support channels. With a public and accessible forum, your support team will get less repetitive emails and phone calls so they can focus on key issues. It will also ensure your precious dollars are well spent, while customers can get the answers they need.
Vanilla Forums offers a cloud based solution that can help complete your customer support solution. Check out our ROI Calculator to see how you can save on support with Vanilla Forums. Try Vanilla Forums Cloud Solution free for 30-days.