Social media may not be the way for consumers to reach brands and get any kind of answer or resolution.
That dire observation comes from a recent study from The Northridge Group, which says that “Thirty-three percent of consumers who contact brands on social media with a customer service question never get a response.”
“Based on a survey of more than 1,000 respondents, the study finds that 26 percent of consumers choose social media for customer service when they can’t reach a representative through another channel,” notes the research summary announcement. “When companies do respond, more than 30 percent of their responses do not meet the customers’ expectations. In fact, social media has the lowest percentage of issue resolution and follow up of all the channels.”
In a word, social is not working for resolution — and that’s not a good omen for the social platforms of the world.
“When it comes to customer service, social media just isn’t living up to the hype,” said Pam Plyler, executive practice lead for customer experience and contact center management at The Northridge Group. “While there are added complexities to managing customer service through social media, engagement should not be considered optional. With the right focus, this channel can be effectively integrated into your overall service strategy.”
The survey presents damning evidence of social media failure to monitor concerns and resolve them.
The report discovered that “just 3 percent of consumers cite social media as the fastest channel for issue resolution, and only 2 percent cite it as their preferred channel.”
That’s bad news, considering that “63 percent of consumers have to engage with a brand two or more times on social media before a customer service inquiry or issue is resolved.”
And what’s worse? About 42 percent of consumers expect some resolution within about an hour when using social media for customer service inquiry or issue.
At this point, they’re likely to be disappointed.
“Nearly half of consumers plan to use social media for customer service issues the same or more than they currently do. There are clearly opportunities for companies to provide excellent customer service on all channels including social media,” said Therese Fauerbach, CEO of the Northridge Group. “Consumers want to use social to resolve problems, but the experience is inconsistent compared to other channels. Social media is a critical channel that companies should leverage to deliver a seamless omni-channel customer experience.”
To download the full report, click here.