How social media can help you deliver better services

Agencies that link the social web to their service delivery will see measurable improvements in efficiency, accountability and customer satisfaction.

Making this connection between your data and the social web is the essential next step in creating powerful, real-time feedback systems.

The new focus needs to be on moving away from the notion of the social web as just a real-time communications channel towards becoming a real-time intelligence system. Think of it as an inbound radar system giving early warning of commercial potential.

This is integrated delivery of services. The combination of instant insight and existing data gives organisations the information needed to direct resources where they are needed. In real estate, this might be former clients sending signals about new moves, new prospects doing the same or disgruntled customers seeking a change of agent.

And the social web can also provide other indicators: pregnancies can mean moves to a bigger house, children getting married can indicate an imminent empty-nester downsize.

Connecting these insights to existing data increases the resolution of your services picture. Relying on historical data to make decisions about the future is out: use valuable, real-time data to strengthen awareness of the quality and depth of your customers’ preferences and needs.

Connecting the social web to organisations

Two separate worlds – that of the customer and that of service delivery – need to be brought together. The technology now exists to make this a reality.

Without this, the quality of insights devolves to meaningless, tactical ‘noise’ measurements.

Customers are more connected than they have ever been, communicating more, consuming and evaluating more content than ever, relying on people they know and trust for information and validation.

They participate in their connected communities to varying degrees, ranging from the passive observer to the fervent advocate.

And they understand that these conversations are public. In such a connected world, the delivery of services becomes more efficient, effective and faster.

At the heart of this is the new ability to personalise individual experiences to make them relevant and timely, and to do so in a way that can be scaled.

Customer insights, inbound via the social web, start the process. The result is valuable data that enrich the profiles of customers held on your databases.
This new, integrated view of the customer can help you:

  • capture and understand individuals’ needs
  • become acutely aware of customer sentiment
  • spot new lead indicators
  • create and deliver new services
  • and thereby improve services overall

Think of social media as providing the input triggers (insights or reactions) and your existing data as providing the best output triggers to act on that insight, whether that be an instant service call, more effective scheduling, the pursuit of overdue payments or the gathering of customer sentiment for use in new business.

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Alan Smith

Alan Smith

Alan Smith is head of customer engagement at Digivizer, a leader in social analytics in Australia delivering the digital footprint of people you know and the people you really should know. He has a background in social media, strategy, public relations and marketing.

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