Social media is a Customer Success Manager’s dream tool. As customers become more aware, leveraging the growth of SaaS, marketing professionals need to keep up. While obviously, building brand awareness and acquiring new customers is crucial, what businesses fail to do is pay attention to the churn. And this is a colossal slip both in terms of branding and finance because 32% of the customers don’t return after one bad experience.
So, before we go into summarizing the steps you should take to manage churn, let’s first understand what customer success for social media means.
How does social media help manage churn?
Social media is extremely crucial for any SaaS business. If the data from Sprout Social Index is to be believed, social media is the top choice for customer support among consumers. That is to say when a brand connects with its consumers on social media platforms, they are more likely to use their products. 65% of the people even say that it increases their loyalty toward the brand and are likely to share their positive experience with their community.
What is customer success for social media?
For a layman, customer success can be thought of as a dynamic model of customer service — its goal is to relieve the pain points before the problem even arises. If your social media success strategy works, it should prevent negativity from being sowed deep in your customer’s mind and make available resources that your silent customers can use to find success with your product. That’s how you’ll retain your customers.
Let’s now take a look at how you can use social media efficiently to reduce churn.
1. Identify the reasons behind churn
There are various reasons why most businesses have to face the terror of customer churn. And while you’ll have to identify it yourself, here are some of the common reasons:
You attract the wrong crowd
Oftentimes, people sign themselves up for something they don’t completely understand. Soon they’ll come to the realization of how they don’t need your services, and they’ll leave you for a competitor. So, ask them the right questions in the very beginning.
Your customer support is in shambles
Even the most tech-savvy customers can sometimes get stuck on minor roadblocks, and it can become a big issue if they take a loss by the time you arrive on the scene. In other words, poor customer service can lead to unprecedented churn, which means you should consider upping your social media game. Learn from brands like Nike. Even if your inbox overflows with customer mentions, you address everybody.
Your customers think your product is over or under-priced
It’s all about perception. If your customers believe you’re cheap, they’ll underestimate your ability to solve their problems. Whereas at the other end of the spectrum, if your offerings seem overpriced to your buyers, they’ll almost definitely go for someone who has their prices optimized.
Since obviously there can be various other reasons, including credit card expiration, shrinking CLV, more downgrades than upgrades — you should probably keep an eye on your competition and evaluate why your customers might go for someone other than you.
2. Invest in the onboarding process by leveraging social media
Social media platforms are where people get together and nurture relationships, so much so that currently, 49% of the world is on social media. It’s only fitting that you do the same for your customers. It requires you to develop a social media customer success strategy that gets you new customers and helps retain them.
If you already have an email campaign in place, it’s all the more efficient to make the best use of your social accounts to fortify your message. Say, when a customer registers on your portal, you collect their handles on platforms where you have an unfailing presence. Later, you can send them a welcome message on these platforms and point them in the direction you want.
You can send them links to your webinars, FAQs/knowledge base, guides, and other helpful resources, or perhaps a simple message telling them that you’re glad to have them on board. It makes the customer feel valued, not marketed to.
3. Invest in live chat software for real-time support via social media
Retaining customers is a top priority for businesses since winning new ones is a whole different ball game. By investing in a world-class live chat software application, you make yourself and your business available 24×7. It is one of the ideal ways to sort out your customers’ problems, collect their feedback, and hence improve your services to prevent churn.
Studies even suggest that almost 63% of customers are likely to return to a platform where they used a live chat software service. Almost 38% even make a purchase. But more than triggering the visible decline in churn rate, live chat software is the most effective communication channel for your customers. No one wants to be put on hold, and as companies are expected to provide support wherever they have a presence, it’s important to note that it’s not mutually exclusive to use live chat with social media.
Now, you can easily integrate, say, Messenger, and handle messages from your users on Facebook by using a third-party live chat agent. Your replies can be quick, media-rich, and you can integrate multiple Facebook pages on a single platform.
4. Integrate FAQs and knowledge base to social media customer success strategy
The market is crowded, and the customers are confused. Everyone wants answers immediately, and if the savvy ones are looking to help themselves, why aren’t you on it already? Since customer support is critical to your customer success strategy, it’s time you integrate an exhaustive knowledge base, more so if you expect unprecedented growth in the near future.
When we talk about a knowledge base, we imagine a centralized and organized database with user manuals, FAQs, product updates, troubleshooting guides, and the like. It serves as the placeholder for a 24×7 help desk, and developing one can free up your customer support representative’s time for all the frequent and common issues.
There are certain things you should keep in mind, though. Since the knowledge base is where your customers will be redirected from either social media or web search, you need to cover all the bases and make it exhaustive. It shall require you to collaborate with all the departments to generate business-specific content. Again, as you progress operations, you’ll have to ensure that the knowledge base stays updated.
5. Invest in social listening
This may be the fifth point we address, but knowing your customer requirements and expectations should be the top priority for your brand. The best way to get that information by leveraging something called ‘social listening’.
Social listening tells you what your customers think about you in their personal conversations on social media. It gives you perhaps the most honest versions of their opinions for your products and what they expect from you in the future. If there are negative opinions, there you have your pain points that potentially cause the churn. Some tools like IFTTT, HootSuite, or something as simple as Google Alerts can help you keep track of social media mentions.
The next step would involve you using the insights gained from social listening and creating engagements that deal with your customers’ woes and desires. Even adverts can be designed to efficiently target a given demographic using the same insights.
6. Offer incentives and rewards via social media to increase retention
Customer churn is a big issue faced by businesses, more so if your offerings are digital in nature. If the switching costs in your industry are embarrassingly low, you have all the more reasons to be vigilant. So, apart from all that’s mentioned above, there’s another tactic you can put to use that focuses on retention on a more psychological level — the reward system or a loyalty program.
For example, you can offer your best-lost customers incentives like a trial for a premium product, or time-sensitive discount codes in exchange for a survey or feedback. It makes the customer feel you want them to stick with you for a lifetime.
For social media, you can work on a creative that notifies your potential customers of your reward program. For example, they get reward points for creating an account, and these points add up with every purchase and can be used for freebies or discounts.
7. Publicly address issues and move to private channels
Very few customers will be vocal about their opinions regarding your brand. Of these opinions, the complaints that you may receive will be the tip of a much bigger iceberg. Almost 96% of the unhappy customers never complain, and most of these will leave silently, never to return.
The solution here is to address the few complaints you receive publicly through social media. This will demonstrate how your brand actively listens to the woes of the hoi polloi and will set benchmarks for the service you provide.
You can approach using a more direct channel of communication if the matter is delicate, but it’s always advisable to make your stance known publicly.
Customer success through social media
The cost behind retaining customers is far lower than acquiring new ones, even though some may argue it demands more effort. Nonetheless, leveraging and integrating social media in your customer success strategy is one of the best steps you can possibly take to keep your churn rate in check.