Social Customer Support – Right Place, Right Time


When reaching out for support, customers today expect more than just the 1-800 treatment. In fact, nearly a third of consumers surveyed for “The Aspect Consumer Experience Index” claimed they would rather scrub a toilet than talk to customer service. As a result, businesses have started to find new ways to communicate with customers.

One way that organizations are adapting is by utilizing social media engagement tools as a means of resolving customer conflicts. This strategy offers the following benefits:

  • Convenient customer touch-point—Many customers are already using social media
  • Display for superior social customer engagement—Counter highly visible public shamings from angry customers with quick and adroit responses
  • More-conversational interactions—Compared to scripted answers that customers often hear over the phone
  • Eliminates frustration of being put on hold—Customers can send a message and get on with their day

Here are examples of superior customer support provided by businesses over some of the most popular social engagement platforms:

Samsung: A Samsung customer wrote to the company via Facebook to request a free phone. He playfully attached a drawing of a dragon in an attempt to persuade the company to honor his (rather cheeky) request. Samsung’s agent responded, saying that the company could not afford to give out free phones—but then (good-humoredly) attached his own drawing of a kangaroo riding a unicycle. The customer posted the delightful interaction on Reddit and it went viral, earning Samsung tons of positive publicity. As a way of saying thanks, Samsung did send the customer a free phone—customized with his original dragon drawing.


JetBlue Airways: While airlines are renowned for drawing ire from their customers, JetBlue has made in-roads against that poor industry image by providing superior social customer service. Consider a recent Twitter interaction between the airline and a passenger: What started out as the minor airing of a grievance about a dysfunctional in-flight TV screen quickly turned into a showcase for the rapid responsiveness of the airline’s customer support function. In fact, the traveler received a fast response to his complaint, and a credit for the TV service—all within the confines of the social media platform’s 160-character limit.


Hillary’s Eat Well: This company makes health-conscious food, and actively patrols its Instagram feed to respond in real time to consumer inquiries and comments. When one individual reached out to ask when she could expect the company to restock her local Target store, she promptly received the bad news that Target would no longer be distributing its products. However, the company redirected the disappointed customer to its website, where a store locator helped her find the next closest distributor of Hillary products. The interaction picked up “likes” and shout-outs from others who saw the conversation online.   


Learn how your call center can leverage the social customer experience as part of a comprehensive solution to deliver more stand-out brand moments.

Chris O'Brien