An omnichannel approach to customer experience is essential for companies focused on maintaining a strong brand reputation. Done well, an effective omnichannel platform delivers a resolution-centered, personalized experience to every customer – on a channel of their choice.
Customer Experience Linked to Purchase Decisions
According to PWC, 73% of consumers identify customer service as an important factor in their purchasing decisions, making customer experience the number one driver of brand loyalty. At the same time, brand loyalty is increasingly fragile. One in three consumers say they will walk away from a brand they love after just one bad experience. Tellingly, most of the 32% of customers willing to abandon a brand after a bad experience are Gen Zers and Millennials who assign lofty significance to how a brand treats and values them.
As market-driving consumers increasingly expect omnichannel support, more companies must expand their customer service model. Doing so promotes consistent brand messaging and enables brands to protect their customer relationships across multiple platforms. Offering right-place, right-time engagement can make the difference between whether a customer chooses your brand or a competitor—and whether they stick with your brand for their next purchase decision.
The Risks of Neglecting Social Media Customer Experience
Even where a company offers strong phone, chat, and self-service support —a lack of social media engagement exposes it to potentially neglecting customer questions and feedback, as well as risking a poor customer service reputation. Think of the impact of just one consumer posting a bad review on a social media platform for all their followers to see.
Many customers complaining on social media expect a brand response within 15 minutes. Brands lacking a social media customer response strategy or with understaffed digital engagement teams are ill equipped to shape their social media brand perception – this at a time when consumers are pivoting to social channels for customer care.
Neglecting social media can also lead to inconsistent brand experiences that damage customer loyalty, lose moment-of-purchase sales opportunities, and alienate buyers in the research and observation stages.
The Power of Social Experience Management Solutions
Providing consistent customer service across all channels significantly benefits a growing company, so it’s important to know how to do it right. Social experience management can be broken down into three solution categories: social care, reputation management, and content/community moderation. Combining these three categories with omnichannel engagement is the best way to provide the quality customer service and experiences that consumers expect to receive from their favorite brands.
1. Social Care
Social care involves monitoring all social media channels. The key is knowing when to listen and when to respond. It’s also essential to align all social media channels in terms of messaging and brand voice. This requires response teams ready to reply to all customer questions, complaints, and praise. Deploying sales conversion and cart value strategies for consumers who are shopping through various media outlets is also important, as is detailed engagement and KPI reporting on engagement and brand performance.
2. Reputation Management
A second specialized area of social experience management is reputation management. This includes online reputation assessments and social media campaign activations. Screening for inappropriate or malicious content aimed at a brand can help companies get ahead of an issue before it escalates into a problem. It’s important to brainstorm brand, product, ecommerce, and retail-based strategies that focus on review response, as well as address questions at the point of digital sale. These efforts can determine whether a customer decides to buy a product or return to a location.
Another key component of reputation management relates to incorporating the right social media customer engagement campaigns. A great campaign aligns with the efforts of marketing teams and agencies to maximize campaign reach and amplify the goals of current social promotions and objectives. Social media customer engagement campaigns can be fundamental to showcasing a brand’s values – above and beyond basic digital customer care, which is another reason why it’s so important to incorporate them into the brand strategy.
3. Content and Community Moderation
Content and community moderation is another integral part of ensuring a company’s presence is being represented accurately across all platforms and that community forums are being cultivated in a way that promotes brand loyalists and new advocates alike. Moderating uploaded user/brand content (video, text, and images), reviewing flagged content, as well as promoting community guideline enforcement are of high importance to grow digital communities while maintaining brand standards. Brands that pull all these digital skills together to monitor all social channels, brand sites, and third-party sites can see the benefits when measuring customer experience. Most importantly, they can set themselves apart from competitor brands.
As the omnichannel approach continues to rule customer experience strategies, having the best tools to measure interactions and implement company KPIs is of the utmost importance to ensuring a successful brand experience while boosting consumer loyalty.
VP - Digital Engagement Solutions, ResultsCX
Sr. Manager - Social and Communities, SiriusXM
About the Author:
Roger Huff is Vice President, Digital Engagement Solutions at ResultsCX. His experience in the business process outsourcing industry spans 15+ years, with more than 10 years of experience concentrated on social media customer experience management. Roger leads solution development and sales of social media and digital CX solutions that span social CX, digital reputation management, and content & community moderation services. He has worked extensively with digital, e-commerce, insurance, healthcare, and retail companies to deliver specialized solutions that elevate brand reputation.