Customer service via social media platforms is definitely in vogue. This is not only due the fact that customers increasingly expect it, but also due the fact that customer service and social media work together very well: social networks are created for dialogue and direct communication but also for the mutual exchange of members themselves.
Social Networks are multimedia available, information can easily be incorporated. They are free and do not need to be developed, programmed and implemented. In addition, good customer service via social networks has a spreading effect: Since it takes place in public, others look and read it.
So for companies it does make sense for various reasons to make a social media appearances for customer service available.
In an US survey of Accent Online 82% named Facebook as their preferred social media channel for customer service namely ahead of Twitter, Google+, etc. Further advantages of Facebook: Making contact is simple (just post it something) but it also provides privacy by just sending a private message. There is also external tools like SocialHub for customer service on Facebook that ensure that customer inquiries can be processed quickly and clearly.
Twitter is also well suited for customer service as a very fast, mainly mobile media and is becoming increasingly more popular. It’s notably fast and simple for users to contact companies.The extreme speed of the medium (also quick responses are expected) is a major challenge for companies.
Disadvantages are also the limitation of 140 characters per tweet and for sending a private message to someone you don’t follow, you have to activate the option to get a message from everyone. Otherwise both accounts must follow each other first to communicate privately.
Google+Google+ technically very good for customer support. Multimedia content such as videos and images can be used and organized within the platform, visual content is displayed well and connecting with Google Drive for exchanging files is also very handy. In addition, you can easily switch into private mode.
Especially interesting in Google+ is the Hangout feature: for instance, you can quickly switch to a video chat with a customer (or simply use the Hangout text chat), or organzise hangouts as public sessions that can be recorded and published in YouTube afterwards.
The communities in Google+ lend themselves to be used as service communities, examples are “Dell cares” or the Cisco Support Communtiy.
Disadvantage: Google+ is by far not as popular as Facebook. Also making contact is more complicated: you can’t just post something on your profile as in Facebook, you must write a post which only the person or the company whom it is directed to will see it. Therefore Google+ is more suitable for taking care of customers that are Google+ users already and know the functionalities.
For more Information, see our Social Media And Marketing.