June 30, 2014
Customers Seeking Brand Connection through Social Media
By Casey Houser
New research from Accent Marketing, a customer engagement solutions enterprise, indicates that many users want to interact with brands through social media.
A recent article at Media Post describes the research in detail. It says Accent has found that 72 percent of consumers want to interact with brands while they are using social media channels such as Facebook (News - Alert) and Twitter. More specifically, the research also shows that 82 percent of consumers use Facebook to speak with customer service representatives.
Not everyone, the research continues, interacts with businesses through social media in the same way. To begin, it appears that more men than women prefer to use Twitter (News - Alert) to engage with companies from whom they have previously purchased a product.
It is also important to note that these people are not only looking for responses from businesses themselves. Regarding the Millenial generation, 75 percent of those individuals say that they find responses from other customers helpful. Customers apparently like to hear the opinions of other customers.
This trend is not lost on Baby Boomers either. More than half of that group – 55 percent – indicated to Accent that they also found it helpful to hear from other customers of the same brands in which they were interested.
The numbers point to a demonstrated need for businesses to establish themselves on multiple social media platforms. Yet, as Roger Huff, director of social media and digital strategy for Accent, said to Marketing Daily, businesses are not exactly chomping at the bit. They simply do not have a structure in place that supports social media as a customer service platform.
John Hoholik, chief growth officer at Accent, further commented on that issue.
“What we see across a lot of our client partners is there’s a lot of lines drawn, and there’s handoffs [between] advertising and purchase and what finally happens after you own the product,” Hoholik said. “There’s a lot of work within channels and agencies that come up with solutions on paper. And as they move from design to execution, many brands don’t have the structure in place to evaluate what happens across those channels.”
Basically, departments and individuals in charge of making sales do not communicate well with departments and people responsible for post-sale customer engagement. Customers end up getting lost somewhere in the middle, and as a result, businesses risk losing future sales with those customers because of an overall lack of customer engagement. Social media platforms are plentiful and ready for businesses to explore; they simply need to take the next step and communicate more effectively in house to better reach their customers within the media channels they prefer.