The Connection – How Social Care Is Changing Customer Service

social media customer serviceThe majority of businesses in the country already understand how valuable social media is as a marketing tool. In fact, according to a recent study done by the Aberdeen Group, 86% of all companies are already using social media as part of their marketing strategy. Today however, companies are realizing that social media is more than just a marketing tool; it has become a new mode for customer service.

Yet while more businesses are using social media, only 41% of the companies surveyed use it as part of their customer service approach. Social care, or customer service done over social media networks, is an emerging strategy businesses are putting into play to provide top tier online customer service while branding with little to no cost.

Social Care Boosts Your Brand

More than ever before, customers are using social media outlets to post complaints, questions, or comments they intend on companies to read. The 2012 Nielsen’s Social Media Report showed that more than half of consumers said they prefer to use social media over the phone to reach out to businesses. Social media users also expect faster response and resolution to their concerns. So although a social media presence can boost a company brand, without proper management, a company’s brand can quickly be damaged. On the other hand, proper social care can improve your overall company brand by showing customers your commitment to customer service.

Building Customer Loyalty

Including social media as part of your company’s overall customer service approach can also help build customer loyalty. Responding positively to a customer complaint can not only help build a trust between you and that customer, but also lets your other social media followers know that you value their needs. Studies show that customers who actively receive positive online social care from a company will purchase between 20% to 40% more goods and services from that company.

Social Care as an ROI Driver

More than three-quarters of businesses that are considered “socially devoted” believe the implementation of social care services is a ROI driver. Socially devoted businesses are those companies that reply to at least 65% of comments, complaints and questions posted on social media networks. 71% of these companies found that creating a social care strategy saved their business money over the long run.

Tips for Building a Social Care Strategy

The trick now becomes finding a way companies can create a successful social care plan that builds customer loyalty and boosts sales. Here are some quick tips to consider:

  • Respond Quickly to Customer Posts. Studies show that more than half of online consumers expect a company to reply to a post in just a few hours, but no longer than 24 hours. It is vital that you consistently manage your social media sites throughout the day to build customer trust.
  • Use Multiple Social Media Outlets. Customers are not just turning to one social media outlet either. They use multiple social media networks throughout the day. It is important that you check for customer’s comments on all different sites, including Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, and LinkedIn.
  • Hire a Social Care Worker or Hire a Service. More than 40% of business owners feel that the complexity of social care has held them back from integrating this into their standard customer service approach. Other companies delegate these services to the marketing team, instead of treating it as a customer services feature. It is important for the company to either hire a dedicated worker to handle their social care services, or use a professional services company to provide these services for them. 

Social media guru and part-time writer, Michael Gal works closely with companies to craft thoughtful writing on a variety of industry-related topics. In his spare time he writes articles on green issues for a socially conscious magazine and works on his novel in progress.

3 Mistakes to Avoid When Starting a Business Blog

PrintThese days it seems that everyone and their mother has a blog. Gone are the days when a blog was relegated to the stay at home moms and angsty teenagers. The business world has now jumped on the blogging bandwagon and the momentum doesn’t appear to waning anytime soon.

So what does this mean for you and your business? Well, that depends on your business, but for most, it means starting a blog is a strategic move to give your company a competitive edge. 

Unfortunately, in spite of all the information out there, too many business blogs are misguided and ill-formed. If you want to take advantage of the most a blog can offer you and your company, check out these 3 common mistakes you should avoid when starting out.

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Why Mobile is the Future of Search

why mobile is the future of searchPeople still tend to think of SEO as referring to searches done on a computer. Mobile searches, however, are becoming more and more common. In the near future, in fact, mobile searches will overtake computer searches. That’s why mobile SEO must be considered when you think about ways to optimize your site.

What is mobile SEO?

Google and other search engines are starting to pay attention to the fact that a high percentage of internet users are on mobile devices. Many websites are not mobile friendly, meaning they cannot be easily viewed from a mobile phone or tablet. What does this have to do with SEO?

Google has publicly stated that it will soon penalize websites in the mobile searches if they are not mobile friendly. This is an important development, because it shows that the search engine giant is officially discussing the existence of a separate type of SEO for mobile sites.

This is both a challenge and an opportunity for website owners who are trying to improve or maintain their search engine rankings. Read more of this post

Infographic Shows Small Businesses Should Not Ignore Power of Social Media

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A new infographic by Placester shows that it is unwise for small businesses to ignore the power of social media marketing. We at BizBrag have been encouraging our friends and customers to leverage the power of social media for their small businesses for years, but it is now more important than ever.

Click here to see what else we have to say about social media for small businesses and the new infographic.

3 Ways Twitter Can Actually Benefit Your Small Business

twitter-small-businessWith more than 500 million registered users, Twitter is changing the way we communicate – and the way we do business. It makes sharing news, opinions and ideas infinitely easier, allowing users to update from virtually anywhere in the world in real time. But while most business owners have heard of Twitter and the power it holds (heck, who hasn’t?) many struggle with how to make it valuable to their own business model.

The truth is, Twitter can have different benefits for every business. Depending on what industry you’re in, what products and services you offer and what your customer base is like, the uses and advantages of Twitter as a business tool could vary greatly. There are three benefits, however, that stand true no matter what line of work you’re in.

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How To Turn One-Time Buyers into Loyal Customers

customer-loyaltyAn ever increasing number of people are using the Internet to buy their goods and some have claimed that this was one of the reasons for the recent demise of Comet – a large electrical retail outlet that once had over 150 stores. With competition increasing on the internet it is important to make the most of every customer who decides to make a purchase from you by persuading them into repeat purchases from you. Here are some tips on how you can go about doing this:

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How to Produce Smart Content for Small Businesses

smart-contentYour small business website deserves more content than just a few pages of generic blurbs. If you want to inspire and excite your customers, you need to provide content that is unique and offers relevant information that engages your readers. By featuring smart content on your site, you’ll attract fresh attention to your company. Here are a few strategies that you can employ that will not only engage your audience, but boost your SEO as well! Let us know what you think of these strategies in the comments, and feel free to add some of your own, as well! Read more of this post

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