June 4, 2014
You train your employees on how to respond to shoppers in-store. Do you also instruct them on how to engage on social media?
Responding quickly and well to the various tweets and comments on your social platforms is a new breed of customer service—and one that can make a lasting impression on shoppers. While you might know the content of your response, you might not be aware of all the ways you can respond.
Facebook makes engaging with customers relatively easy with straightforward liking and commenting. Twitter, on the other hand, gives you many more avenues for interaction. Here’s a cheat sheet to prepare for your next 140-character interaction.
Twitter gives you five primary ways to acknowledge fellow users: favorite, reply, direct message, retweet, and add to list.
Favorite. Click the star icon on a tweet that has a positive mention of your store, its products or for any tweet you’d like to acknowledge without sending a text reply.
Reply. Click reply to create an @reply. Your tweet will start with that person’s username, after which you type your message. This is an opportunity to gain insight from your customer and continue the conversation. For example, if a shopper says she loves your fresh food offerings, ask her which item is her favorite or what she’d like to see on the menu.
Direct message. This is for exchanging private contact information, such as emails, so you can follow up in-depth outside of Twitter. Note that you can only send a direct message to someone who is following you.
Retweet. Click retweet for excellent reviews, endorsements and articles you’re mentioned in (from big and small publications), and tweets from partners. Also retweet any content from others that you think would appeal to your followers so you’re not simply retweeting interactions with your store.
Add to list. Think of this like a bookmark, but for your favorite people. Add users you’d like to follow on a regular basis or anyone who has mentioned you and loves the store. Examples: Create a private “fans” list for down-the-road follow-up with shoppers who have engaged with you. Or craft a public “health crusaders” list of people whose content you’d like to retweet. (A private list is one only you can see, while a public list means people will know you have added them, and anyone can follow the list.)
Implement at least one of these five ideas to get more mileage out of engaging with customers on Twitter. After all, you don’t ignore your customers when they ask for help in person—why would you do that online?
Caren Baginski is the social media coordinator for Denver-based LiveWell Colorado and former social media and digital editor of newhope360.com.
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