Thursday, September 10th, 2015 | 6 min read
We all know that social is here to stay. Most of us are on at least one network, with the average person having five social media accounts. At the recent Customer eXperience Management Summit, hosted by MongoDB and sponsored by Sprinklr, the 11 speakers urged the audience to accept a very important, sometimes hard-to-face truth: that the consumer’s world is changing, and businesses are struggling to keep up with social.
The speakers included:
While most businesses are on social, they aren’t maximizing its potential. Here are some key takeaways from the summit on the role of social media in business and customer experience.
Think about it: Twitter is like the new pop-up town square where people go to have their thumb on the pulse of what’s happening around the world. When crisis strikes, we all look to social media to see what other people think about it.
Your business needs to be on social media, listening, in order to be aware of progress at the speed of social. When you listen, you have a better chance of knowing your competitors and driving conversions.
You can’t think of a consumer as just one person – that person may talk to 10 others in the face of a bad experience. How often do you look up the reviews of a restaurant before going out? Are you influenced by what the reviewers say, even if you don’t know them?
That’s the reality in our modern, social world where customers have power and influence like never before. It’s no longer what you say that matters, it’s what your customers say about you.
The good news is: companies are starting to catch on. A recent study, in which thousands of CEOs were interviewed, showed that 73% of them think companies need to build a social enterprise. But agreeing is only the first step. A CEO must understand the true value of social enterprises to fully transition to the social world, but there will likely be a steep learning curve that the whole company needs to be ready for.
It’s the time of customer experience – traditional sales pitches don’t work anymore. Social media anthropomorphizes brands, allowing customer engagement on a more personal level. Your business, therefore, needs to become the kind of “person” who is willing to help.
To find answers for their problems, people turn to the internet. You should have the answers ready for your customer’s inevitable search, presented in language they can understand. This will help create a loyal community of customers, providing you with stability in the tumultuous social world.
There’s no cover-all answer on how to be social – it’s constantly evolving, and the competition is stiff. 86% of consumers say they will pay more for better customer experience (of which social is an undeniable aspect), so you need to keep up.
Using social halfway, or just because everyone else is, is like driving a minivan in a Formula 1 race – it’s impossible to win without full commitment. Your customers are invested in social, and you need to be equally so. Invest in technology that will streamline your activity and increase efficiency. New competitors can rise up every day; being agile and equipped will help you get ahead.
Big pictures are composed of many small details. Change can seem exponential and disorienting, but focusing on the smaller details can help you adapt to the dynamic nature of social, one step at a time.
Generating and analyzing data, broken down by target audience, can help you improve the big picture and create a greater experience for your customers overall. Collaborate with your partners to get more data – you need all the information you can get.
Being on social can be scary for brands – you can’t control what’s being said about you. Your social team cannot work in isolation. By creating a strong framework for your digital strategy, you can be sure to provide the right content to the right departments. If you want to use social in the best way, different departments cannot function in silos. Everyone must be invited along for the journey – legal and compliance departments included – because, ultimately, social is a company-wide commitment.
Change is inevitable, and your company can either use social to scrape by, or resolve to create a living, breathing community that supports your brand. As our keynote speakers indicated, getting started is the hardest part, but, when fully committed to, social has the power to transform your brand.
About The Author: Raksha Manjunath is an Editorial Intern at Sprinklr, based in New York, NY. She recently graduated from New York University with a BA in English Literature, and minors in Education and Creative Writing.