With Twitter’s IPO Looming, Which Industries Are Taking It Seriously As a Customer Service Channel?

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New report from Conversocial finds that most industries still fall well below consumer expectations for customer service on Twitter, with retailers and restaurants significantly behind telecoms and airlines.

Conversocial (http://www.conversocial.com), the leading social customer service platform, released today "Tweet, Email or Call: Which Brands are Re-directing Social Media Complaints to Traditional Channels". The report (which can be found at http://conversoci.al/tweet-email-call) reviewed over 40,000 Tweets to study which brands and industries were delivering real customer service over Twitter vs. re-directing customer complaints to traditional channels like phone and email.

Research shows that first contact resolution is one of the most important attributes to a good customer experience*, and leading companies in the report redirected under 3% of Twitter queries - compared to the worst redirecting over 40%.

The analysis analyzed Tweets at a brand and industry level, focusing on top retailers, airlines, telecoms, finance and restaurant brands.

Key findings:

-Verizon, J.C. Penney, Bank of America and American Airlines are leading their industries in the shift to social customer service, all deflecting less than 3% of Tweets to traditional channels (and Verizon, the best, deflecting just 0.21%)
-Lowes, Delta, T-Mobile and Wells Fargo deflected the most in their industries - with Lowes deflecting more than 23% of Tweets away from social media and back to traditional channels
-Airlines and Telecoms companies deflected the fewest issues on average (2%), while Restaurants deflected the most on average (21%)
14% of the Tweets deflected by retailers were posted by a customer who was in-store

"The shift to ubiquitous smart phones and always-on social profiles means that it is now essential for brands to take social media seriously as a customer service channel," says Conversocial founder and CEO Joshua March. "Forcing your customers to repeat themselves in a communication channel that they haven’t chosen, and that is less convenient for them, not only delivers a worse customer experience but leaves brands open to public negative comments and the risk of an issue blowing up into social crisis."

The report found that 76% of conversations between customers and brands ended completely after the brand suggested the customer switch channels - and 19% of customers said they had already tried the suggested channel or strongly preferred social service. And of these conversations, brands ignored a staggering 42% of customer Tweets when the customer objected to switching channels.

The report can be downloaded for free at: http://conversoci.al/tweet-email-call.

*E.g. Convergys U.K Customer Scorecard: when asked about their priorities for a good customer experience, three of the top attributes were related to first-contact resolution (e.g. 65% responded ‘Addresses my needs the first time I contact them’)

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