The 32nd Social Media Breakfast MeetUp at Kolkata on the 13th of May 2011 was a nice interactive session of an hour despite the election-results heat scorching up every Kolkatans’ mind. The topic – Changing the Approach to Customer Satisfaction with Social Media – was agreed to be absolutely pertinent in the context of present day corporate world. Increasingly, with a wide variety of companies competing for the consumers’ mind space, internet, especially Social Media is playing a significant role in the customer’s choice of buying a product or even in maintaining faith in a particular brand/company.
The points of the active discussion are summarized as follows:
* What is customer satisfaction?
o It is the holistic idea of retaining the faith of customers in a particular brand/company
o In earlier days, newspapers had a column where people used to write their grievances regarding some product they used of some brand. Now this whole interaction has changed base due to the influx of social media
o Social media spreads the word (good or bad) faster
o Hence, the approach to retain customers by a company is also changing
* Customers are not always right in Social media – what do you think?
o Brands give importance to products that have more followers…since any comment about them spreads like a viral. A single post, in such cases, can make a huge difference in the brand’s fortune
o Often companies hire people to talk bad about their rival companies/brands – attempting to ruin their brand image Potential customers should be aware of that and make a detailed search before choosing or disregarding the product of a particular brand
o Companies, on the other hand, should get their facts straight to give customer satisfaction online. Companies should decide where they are wrong and where the customer is right
* What should be the approach of companies in view of the social media accessibility to each customer?
o The approach should be more professional; the satisfaction of the customer is the primary goal of any organization
o Products, review and services …Companies should focus on these parameters to win the customer’s heart
o Companies should answer every query of the customer. This way the companies win the trust of its customers
o Companies should focus on quality rather than quantity since quality helps in retaining customers in the long run
o Companies should come up with new innovative ideas to sell their products effectively
* Customers’ satisfaction depends on the awareness of the customer.
o Case studies on specific brands were discussed which had prominence on social media and their customer services quotient were taken into account as well
o Companies should inform change of company policies to the customers for their cooperation, thereby increasing the brand presence. The fact remains that customer satisfaction is related to customer awareness on social media
* In conclusion
o Customer awareness, underlying customer satisfaction, customer service – all of these should be given importance to be successful
o “Customer is King”. If companies start believing this adage it is going to be mutually beneficial.
Throughout the discussion the concentration was on what some big companies in India are trying to do by tapping the customer-review space on social media. The only way a company can be successful is by moving forward, keeping the customers as their guiding light.
Kolkata Knowledge Center
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