Recent research from Fishburn Hedges and Echo Research found 36% of UK consumers, are using social media to 'talk' to companies, up from 19% eight months ago. Two-thirds of consumers (68%) say it allows them to find their voice and 65% say it's a better way to interact with companies than a call centre.
However, the latest annual survey from A T Kearney reveals that a whopping 70% of complaints are going un-answered. The main reason given for the lack of response is, social media isn't being integrated into customer service centres.
Seventy percent of complaints made by customers on social media are ignored, because some companies view it as simply a marketing tool and have no link to the customer contact centre, that's in the face of between 5% and 20% of all complaints to many organisations are made through social media.
Jim Close, managing director of Datapoint, said: "The delay in the use of social media in the contact centre is understandable, but this must now be rectified if many companies are to protect their reputations and keep their competitive edge.
"Software can be deployed that not only fully integrates social media into traditional complaint resolution channels, but that also forms part of a wider contact centre optimisation strategy. For example, peak times for complaints received via social media can differ from other communication channels and software can be used to plan staff allocation to meet these variations effectively.
"Social media tools are for two-way dialogue with customers as well as a (mostly) one-way marketing channel. They differ from more traditional media because often the interaction is globally-visible and there is potential for massive reputational impact. The organisations that learn this lesson the fastest – and use contact centre systems to do this effectively – will be the ones that win the customer retention race."