Companies have made the jump to VoIP phones in order to connect their teams in the office, while minimizing cost. Many have compared options on sites like WhichVOIP.com before making the plunge to convert their entire office. However, in today’s hyper competitive world, every major company is now open 24/7 to service its customers online. The world we live in demands constant attention from customers. One of the facets where we’ve seen an explosion of attention demanding customers is the wonderful, yet scary world of “corporate social media”. Let’s look at a few ways Social Media has changed the way we do business.
1) Instant Accountability
Many Fortune 500 companies have augmented their traditional HR training to include discussions around how to handle customer complaints and situations (especially in a retail environment) where customers bring out their camera phones and start recording. One instance where this training was seen to pay off was when a Chik-Fil-A Drive Thru Attendant was mercilessly recorded while fulfilling an angry customer’s every request. The customer thought they would be able to get a reaction, however the driver ended up leaving empty handed as the drive-thru attendant simply complied to the best of her ability while requesting the driver turn off the camera phone.
2) Social Media Departments
Many large companies have developed entire departments to handle customer complaints raised on corporate social media. When a customer tags a corporation or local store in a snarky social media complaint status, these corporate social media wizards jump to and offer a kind voice of help and sanity in an often hectic and abrasive internet culture. Providing customers with the opportunity to reach out to customer service when they have had a bad experience, shared on social media with their friends, a company can resolve complaints and improve their product or service.
3) Social Media Advertising
Companies large and small are now actively seeking ways to get customers to share the news of their purchase or patronage on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and more. By telling customers to share a picture of them eating a slice of pie at a pie shop, along with a specific hashtag, it’s easy for companies to sponsor raffles and other giveaways in return for some free publicity. The idea of getting a customer to take a picture of their brand, and then send it to all of their friends for free would have been a foreign concept just twenty years ago. Today, everyone is a potential marketing guru, offering companies a fast lane to their friends and family.
4) Shareable Website Widgets
Web developers have been hard at work, developing new and exciting ways to connect customers with their brand. One way to do this is to encourage viewers of their webpage to “like” them on Facebook or share an article of interest on Twitter. “Like” and “Share” buttons have become a near necessity for companies looking to get ahead in the world of online media. Companies going up for an Initial Public Offering (IPO) on Wall Street have had to present their social media reach as an important metric for potential investors to look at.
The real question is, is your brand effectively marketing to today’s generations of consumers?