The Ups and Downs of Customer Service via Social Media

Posted on April 9, 2014 by


Best In Class Performance

Customer Service Response Rate as Provided by the Top 100 Global Brands via Simply Measured

A recent post appearing on focused on a study by Simply Measured. “Customer Service Inquiries Up 44 Percent on Twitter — But Response Times Are Down” was pointed out by Autom Tagsa.  It’s a look at how companies are responding to customer service inquiries via twitter.  (It would be great to see a cross-platform comparison with Google+ and Facebook, eventually possibly LinkedIn and Pinterest.)  After reading the post, I read the full report as well and found some interesting points to frame this month’s Customer Service feature on SMChat.

  • “The study which analyzed the accounts of the top 100 global brands for the month of January 2014, discovered that only 32 of those brands have a dedicated customer service handle. The number of companies with customer service handles hasn’t changed, despite the data indicating that more consumers are turning to social for customer service needs.”
  • Users are adopting Twitter as a customer service channel. Mentions of dedicated customer service channels are up 44% year-over-year (YOY).
  • There is a 208% increase of customer service requests on twitter, with an average response time slowing only 10% YOY.
  • The study indicated a some “how they respond” and “when they respond” best practices by the best-in-class brands. Including handling an influx with canned responses and adequately staffing during high-volume hours.
  • The top 10 brands on the list respond to 83% of the inquiries on twitter, the average is 60%. (seems like the other 90 brands have a lot of room for improvement.)
  • Response rate, time, how and when are key areas on which the top 10 focus. (The “who” is responding is missing, would be great to know how the top 100 are structured to put the best people in position to mange the customer service process.)

SMChat will focus on the following questions during our chat at 1pm ET on Wednesday, April 9, 2014.

Q1. Should it be a “best practice” for companies to establish a dedicated twitter handle for customer service and why/why not?

Q2. What assumptions can be made about the companies not that are not top 100 and how they are providing customer service on twitter? (Based on your observations/experience)

Q3. Would it be beneficial to run an algorithm against “who” is inquiring to dictate the response rate?

Q4. What are your thoughts regarding canned responses for customer service inquiries to a brand on twitter?

Q5. What preventative measures could be taken to reduce the number of inquires, both answered and unanswered?

Hope to see you on the chat!