Imagine a world where your office, your store, your warehouse… is open 24 hours a day… seven days a week… 365 days a year. An employee has to be there around the clock without fail to assist customers through the purchase process and answer their questions when they’re confused or upset.
Most readers might say, “Oh that sounds terrible, I could never be ‘always-on’ like that.” Well… the truth is, you already are “always-on,” whether you want to be or not. Your brand doesn’t get to decide when the phone lines shut down and the door locks: your customers do.
The Digital Age – Where Customers Call the Shots
Brands are no longer in control of the message or the story that’s being told about their product. The consumers are in control. And when they publicly praise or condemn you at 5:00 p.m. on a Friday via Twitter, one thing is certain: they’ll be having the conversation whether you show up or not.
A new study on customer experience found that 80% of consumers’ questions on Twitter went unanswered. This is especially unfortunate when you consider that 85% of customers expected a response on Twitter within the hour. In reality, it took retailers an average 31 hours to respond.
It’s also unfortunate because socially-responsive brands get four times the engagement as those brands that don’t interact with their fans (a story we shared in July). As many brands struggle to respond quickly and sufficiently, these three brands – as reported by Forbes – are nailing it…
@NimmoDavid That's definitely not what we like to hear. We'd like to help. DM us some photos and what's going on if you're interested.
— Beats by Dre Support (@BeatsSupport) November 11, 2015
(Beats is an Apple product.) While @BeatsSupport was a little late in reaching this user, their Twitter customer service team definitely gets points for taking initiative. This user did not Tweet the actual support team or even ask for help. But @BeatsSupport found his Tweet and started a conversation. The response is personal and human.
@BexaRaven Unfortunately. Hope you have a good weekend! Janice
— Marriott Hotels (@Marriott) November 13, 2015
Scammers posing as Marriot were calling people through masked phone numbers. One Twitter user tweeted about it (presumably thinking it was actually Marriott), and Marriott quickly pointed them to the PR statement about the incident. The exchange ended with some “Have a good weekend!” wishes and a personal sign-off (“Janice”), putting a human name behind the corporation.
@slynhiggins That's what we love to hear. Great price, great experience, that's our goal every time!
— Kroger (@kroger) November 12, 2015
Maybe stating the obvious here, but it needs to be said: don’t think of all Twitter responses as crisis control. Sometimes you get to say, “Thanks,” and start a conversation, as we see in this fun exchange.
How Do You Monitor Your Brand & Respond on Twitter?
Do you have any favorite tools or services?