It’s around nine years ago that branding and marketing guru Jonathan Salem Baskin introduced me to the idea that brand equals behaviour in his book “Branding Only Work on Cattle”. Jonathan’s ideas have shaped my thinking on how brands can successfully engage with their customers (and not-yet customers) on social media.
There are many brands who have embraced the challenge of providing outstanding customer service through their posts and tweets on social media. Not everyone gets it right though, and even the great brands sometimes get it wrong! Is the desire to demonstrate good brand behaviour enough to show willing to your customers?
Streaming music platform Spotify has for a number of years provided customer support through its Spotify Cares channels on Facebook and Twitter. The team respond quickly and in a friendly manner, sometimes posting a song from the platform to respond to customers – a really nice touch.
Where Spotify excels though, is with its customer outreach. The Spotify Cares team actively monitors mentions of Spotify in people’s posts, even when they are not tagged. Some of the rants and gripes that people post about would have many brands steering clear of getting involved, not Spotify. The team are both bold and brave and often engage with “haters” attempting, through great customer service, to turn them into fans. There have been instances where Spotify Cares has not only resolved an issue for a hater but turned them into a fan and also created a personalised playlist for them as well.
2. Jet Blue
Jet Blue Airways has featured in some memorable social media campaigns over the years, more importantly, the low-cost American airline has harnessed social media to provide excellent customer support.
A couple of years back Laurie Meacham, Manager Customer Commitment at JetBlue Airways said:
“We call ourselves a customer service company that happens to fly planes”
At the moment, Jet Blue’s team is having to deal with the situation in Puerto Rico caused by the devastation of two hurricanes. Posting on its social channels are both angry and emotional customers, either facing flight cancellations to and from the island or trying to get relief to relatives and friends based there. While this is a difficult scenario for Jet Blue’s customer service team to be handling, including an increase in posts, they are still providing great answers to customer enquiries and setting the record straight about their own role in relief flights where necessary.
If brand equals behaviour and your brand behaves badly, it’s a bit unfair to let your social customer service team sort out the mess left by other colleagues.
Thankfully this is something that online electronics retailer AO doesn’t have to deal with very often. Their Facebook page is full of praise for service rather than being littered with complaints. Where customers have experienced issues the AO team are quick to jump on these and resolve them through Messenger if any customer details are needed.
Over on Twitter while the customer experience is similar there are more issues and complaints to resolve. However, the tone remains friendly and engaging. AO’s team doesn’t rush to move onto the next tweet but values the customer interaction, asking questions and taking responsibility for a resolution to their problem.
Are you thinking of providing customer service on social media, or want to improve what you’re currently doing? Why not check out our Customer Service On Social Media course?