In the constantly evolving digital world, social media has changed the way customers communicate. Offering more than just statuses and “likes”, social media has become a space for open dialogue between companies and their customers, changing the way companies manage customer communication. Emails remain important, but there’s no denying that social media has influenced the way customers interact with companies, and consequently reshaped the way emails are handled. Find out, in this article, how social media has impacted email management, and strategies for adapting to this new reality.
The evolution of communication channels in customer service
While in the past all official communication was by email, this is no longer necessarily the case in 2023. More and more customers are turning to social media as a simpler, more accessible means of communication.
The emergence of social media networks
Once intended for posting short-lived moments and friendly exchanges, social media has evolved into open communication platforms between companies and their customers. Today, a simple private message on Facebook, a well-formulated tweet, or a DM on Instagram carry as much importance as the email conversations of the past.
Statistics speak for themselves: according to a recent study, 67% of consumers now use social media to contact companies and request customer service. Customers have become more inclined to choose the ease and immediacy offered by social media to get answers to their questions and solve their problems.
The power of emails despite it all
Email remains a quiet force, an asynchronous communication gateway that, for certain needs, outperforms social networks. The advantages of email, especially its ability to handle detailed information and provide written proof, keep it at the heart of customer service.
One of the key advantages of email is its ability to retain the history of exchanges, making it easier to follow up cases and understand customer needs. Nevertheless, it’s important to note that email also has its drawbacks, such as asynchronous communication, which can sometimes seem impersonal, and the possibility of longer response times.
The impact of social media on the management of emails
Social media is the world of instantaneity, while emails favour reflection and deliberation. The coexistence of these two channels poses interesting challenges for companies. Find out how this impacts email management:
Reduced number of emails
By channelling common questions and simple queries into public discussions or private messages, social media platforms lighten the email workload. The benefits of a reduced email volume are obvious. Customer service teams can devote more time to complex issues and value-added interactions. What’s more, it reduces response times, which is always a plus when it comes to improving customer satisfaction.
But this reduction in email volume is accompanied by a new set of customer expectations. On social media platforms, speed is key. Customers expect near-instant responses. This contrasts with emails, where a response within 24 hours is often deemed acceptable. This pressure for immediate responses is a challenge for companies, but also an opportunity. Companies need to be ready to juggle these differences to satisfy their customers as best as possible.
Strategies for adapting to new communication channels
Adapting to new communication channels is a challenge, but it can be a major opportunity to improve customer satisfaction and strengthen a company’s reputation.
Integrating social networks into email management
Adapting to new communication channels requires a well thought-out approach. One of the most effective strategies is to integrate social media into email management. This fusion enables companies to streamline their management of customer interactions, reducing fragmentation and promoting consistency.
Imagine a customer asking a question via Twitter, then sending a follow-up email for further details. An integrated approach enables the customer service agent to link these two conversations, ensuring a seamless customer experience. What’s more, this approach enhances visibility of the interaction history, which is invaluable for increased contextual understanding.
The benefits of this integration are numerous. Customer service teams can better manage the growing volumes of messages on social networks, while maintaining adequate email tracking. Operational efficiency improves, and customers benefit from a seamless experience, whatever the chosen channel.
Training and resources
However, the effective integration of social media into email management relies heavily on the training of staff. Customer service agents need to acquire specific skills to manage social media networks, understanding the nuances of each platform and learning to handle fast-paced and often public interactions.
This requires dedicated resources, including social media management tools and a trained workforce. Companies need to invest in staff training and technology to ensure successful adaptation.
At ProContact, we work closely with you to include this solution in your business strategy. We can offer an unprecedented adaptation of your way of working thanks to the arrival of resources located elsewhere, without losing time, money or quality.
ProContact is more than a contact centre. Thanks to trained, qualified, hand-picked and multilingual agents, we enable the companies that choose us to gain credibility and above all to satisfy their customers, regardless of the situation and in complete transparency.
Outsourcing has become a tangible and concrete business strategy for the development of the company. To find out more about our services, for a quality partnership, click on our contact form, send us an e-mail or call us on (+33) 1 84 76 24 03.