It's been quite a while businesses and organisations believed Social Media is a new and did number of experiments; some failed but some earned brand loyalty. Typically those failed in their Social Media vision failed to acknowledge listening to their customer and engage with them. By contrast those brands took Social Media as an opportunity to communicate with their audience, saw their brand popularity increased.
Social Media is about listing to what others have to say more than talking at them. Social Media allows an amazing opportunity to exceed customer satisfaction; while reducing number of phone calls to your call centres or number of emails which are often left unanswered - as major causes of further customer dissatisfaction. In one of my previous blog posts I said, customer service is the new PR; and I again reiterate the importance of customer service in today's world of business.
Social Media proved that it is not about controlling conversations and working with ghost writers; it is about learning how your brand is perceived by people and why. Building massive number of fans/followers without engaging with them is in fact waste of time and all other allocated resources.
What is the point of having 150,000 followers on Twitter and follow only 400 (with most of whom brands won't engage or, they're the team behind the tweets and status updates)? I think we reached the time to become serious about social media and customer service through the medium; as what is said on Twitter or Facebook, in a blink of an eye spread all over the web and becomes a permanent citizen of memories.
If you would like to have a brand with positive associations, stop thinking about increasing number of fans/followers; start investing in quality content and genuine listening to your customers.
Brands used to asking a questions in traditional sales projections and still asking the same question when it comes to Social Media; and that question is about ROI.
To put this in a plain and simple language, the ROI of Social Media is in engagement and listening to customers. You can only build brand loyalty and become social business leader, if you master engaging with your customers and listening to your customers.
By listening to above tips, you will exceed your customers' expectations, improve customer service and generate your brand invaluable positive word of mouth; all these should ultimately increase your revenue.
Follow Ehsan Khodarahmi on Twitter: www.twitter.com/eksays