Your B2B customer service efforts will be much more effective if you can manage to learn more about your target consumers. You already spent time dissecting the inner workings of your ideal client when you sketched your buyer persona. Luckily for you, we live in a digitally-connected multiverse of social channels that can let you get deep-down and access quality information about your target audience.
It’s perfectly ethical and, in fact, your clients want it because they expect you to have comprehensive knowledge of their likes and dislikes and needs and necessary solutions. That’s why they chose you over the competition in the first place. You can take your knowledge of your clients even further with the following techniques and tools.
1. Go Where Your Audience Hangs Out
Monitoring all of your social channels for interactions is important. Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn…it’s tough to keep up, isn’t it? You can save time by concentrating on the social network that is most frequented by your audience. From a customer service perspective, you might think that Facebook is the platform to use since it’s the most frequented. As it turns out, Twitter is more popular for customer service than any other social network.
In fact, customer service interactions increased on Twitter by as much as 250% between 2015 and 2017. So keep your finger on the pulse of the Twitterverse if you want to learn as much as you can about your B2B buyers.
2. Learn by Solving Problems
Nothing will teach you more about your audience than answering their calls for help. Hopefully, you will be able to alleviate all problems before they occur. You can accomplish this through diligent research into your buyer persona’s primary issues while coming up with innovative ways to solve them. However, you may not even know about some issues until they arise, and that’s when Twitter – and other social channels – can give you invaluable information that can enrich the abilities of your client services team.
Not only will answering social media complaints teach you more about your audience, but answering those calls for help can increase customer loyalty by as much as 25%!
3. Communicate Often
You should always be “listening” to your audiences on the various social platforms. While time-consuming, this can help you learn about your audience’s problems and daily lives. Over time, you will come to recognize some of your prospects and clients by their comments. Answer in kind, but definitely, use all social means available. For instance, don’t just listen to and respond to comments. Private messaging platforms should also be used, as they are personal and highly-effective for learning more about your clients while also boosting customer advocacy.
As an example, Sprint saw an increase of 31% in private messages in three months when they introduced Facebook Messenger to their customer care support options in 2017. That just goes to show that consumers prefer instant and intimate customer care. You should deliver exactly that if you hope to rise above and beyond the competition, at least in the eyes of your target market.
4. Communicate Quickly
The fact is, every time you make a touchpoint with a prospect or client, you have an opportunity to learn more. Most people will willingly tell you about their issues and how you can help. This can further build your knowledge base and increase your bottom line. That’s right, not only will responding right away help you become more familiar with your customers, but speedy responses on social media have shown a direct correlation with the willingness for higher customer spend.
Airline customers, for example, showed a willingness to pay $2.33 more for the same service if a social media response was provided within about 70 minutes.
5. Make Your Phone Secondary
Compared to all the other tools at your disposal, the phone is terrible when it comes to learning more about your customers. You can’t see who you’re talking to and, depend on your connection and the person’s tone of voice and accent, words can get muddled and lines can get crossed, quite literally.
Phones shouldn’t be thrown out with the bathwater, but they also shouldn’t be your primary channel of communication, as the phone was shown to be the most frustrating customer service channel by Aspect Research.
6. Keep Collecting Data
Your marketing, sales, and client support teams should be taught to mine prospects and clients for information at every touchpoint. Don’t make individuals feel as though they’re interviewing for a job, but your team can skillfully pepper questions throughout their normal conversations.
The idea is to show clients that you care and asking questions is one of the best ways to do that. It’s the value of those questions that will help you learn more about the ones you’re targeting with your marketing and sales efforts.
For instance, while asking about the prospect, it’s perfectly normal to ask about the client’s availability and normal working hours and likes and dislikes about the product, or whatever the issue entails. As long as the agent is providing solutions, most people will willingly tell agents whatever they’re asked.
7. Provide Superior Customer Service
Here is something you can take away about your audience: They are most likely comprised of the younger generations, and 54% of Millennials, 50% of Gen Xers and 52% of baby boomers will stop doing business with a company because of poor customer service.
The bottom line is that in order to learn more about your audience, you must dig in and serve their needs. You can do all the research in the world, but until you start putting out those small fires you didn’t anticipate beforehand, you’ll never truly get to the heart of how to maximize client service.
Now you know how to provide that service, on Twitter, and on social in general. These channels are instant, frequent, and preferred by consumers everywhere. That’s how to learn more about your audience and serve them like the Kings and Queens they are in the digital age. That information can then be used to maximize lead generation and retention for company-wide success.