You want to know why it’s so important to communicate with customers on social media channels like Facebook and Twitter? Well, if you don’t, your competitors will.
Here’s a quick example: I recently had a little trouble logging into my Radian6 account. I’ve used these guys since the beginning and as far as social media monitoring goes it’s a pretty decent service. However, this is a crowded space in terms of competitors, there are literally dozens of services who would love the chance to gobble up a few customers because of a bad experience.
As I realized I couldn’t login to my account (the page couldn’t connect), I took a couple seconds to shoot their @radian6 Twitter handle a quick note. I simply asked “@radian6 are you down?”. My thought was that this might be a universal issue and since their social media team is pretty quick to reply, I figured this was the easiest way to get an answer. Turns out it wasn’t universal, but I was promptly responded to by their team and connected to support. Done and done.
However, in the one minute it took @radian6 to respond to me, I had a competitor tweet to me in literally seconds. Not only was it another service, SocialAppsHQ, but it was the founder, @rajatgarg. He politely noted that I should check out his service if I haven’t already. He wasn’t pushy, nor did he say anything bad about Radian6.
He was simply monitoring his competitors within Twitter and looking for opportunities to poach customers having a bad customer experience. Now, poaching sounds pretty negative, but this is a competitive space and you’d be unwise not to take advantage of the open and public forum that is Twitter. Plus, with monitoring tools like HootSuite or TweetDeck, it makes it pretty easy to see when one of these issues or complaints comes across to a company.
My point here is that social media platforms like Twitter are a fantastic tool for finding customers. Often times, our clients say they can’t make a clear connection between Twitter, or any other social network for that fact, and business ROI. Well, here’s a pretty clear one.
If someone complains about your service on Twitter, chances are your competitor is going to swoop in and try to give them a better experience. Now, we all know no service is perfect, so it makes it even more important to have a presence and be actively responding to issues. Otherwise, a competitor might have just gained another customer – yours.