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5 Key Findings from the 2014 Social Customer Engagement Index – How Does Your Organization Stack Up?

I’m please to present guest blogger, Brent Leary’s recent blog post on the 5 Key Findings from the 2014 Social Customer Engagement Index.  The survey was done by Social Media Today with results analysis by Brent Leary and includes a foreword Paul Greenberg.  Take a look and let us know how your organization stacks up on these 5 key metrics.

How Does Your Organization’s Effort to Integrate Social into Service Stack Up?

By Brent Leary

Earlier this year we released the fourth edition of the Social Customer Engagement Index report. With more than 1,200 respondents participating the most recent study, and additional questions on strategy/approach to social service, the 2014 edition of the report includes lots of interesting data for you to comb through. In addition to the raw numbers and the analysis of the data, case studies from Discover, Kimpton Hotels, Nissan Motors and T-Mobile, add valuable color to the numbers.

For a quick look at the study, below are 5 key findings to dig into and see how your organization compares:

1. 15% of companies surveyed say more than 25% of customer service inquiries are initiated over social channels.

social engagement

As the chart above illustrates, slowly but surely more customer service interactions are taking place over social channels over time.  Where 57% of the survey population had less than 5% of the service inquiries happen via social channels in 2011, that number dropped to 35% in 2013.  And it’s easy to see that much of that decrease is made up of increases in the higher categories.

Is your organization seeing a steady increase in service interactions occurring on social channels?  Even though these interactions still make up a small percentage of overall customer support interactions, companies understand the importance of integrating this channel into the fold.  And while it’s a small percentage today, these interactions and how they are handled are there for current and prospective customers to see, which make it incredibly important to address now before those percentages get much bigger.

2. 27% of the survey populations say their organizations respond to social service inquiries in less than an hour.

We all know that when it comes to the world we live in today, speed thrills and the lack of it kills.  This especially applies to the social and mobile world.  When people reach out for help and/or assistance online, they expect immediate action.  It doesn’t necessarily mean immediate resolution, but it does mean a quick response acknowledging their request for help.  Companies who are able to meet the “need for speed” in this regard and respond in less than 60 minutes are finding more success with the service goals and objectives, according to the survey results.  But, as the years go on and customer expectations continue to rise, measuring in minutes will be the norm, not hours.  Is your organization ready for this?

3. 50% of those surveyed said their company provides customer service via mobile devices, up from 38% in 2012.

The rapid acceleration of providing mobile support will probably come as no surprise to you, as we live in a fast-moving, multi-tasking world.  And with more and more of our life experiences being driven through a growing array of mobile devices, this also means more service interactions are as well.  By providing tools like mobile self-service, knowledgebases, and mobile chat, it puts fast answer capability right into the hands of your customers…literally.

4. 55% of survey population have integrated social service strategy to overall customer engagement strategy, integrated service teams, and integrated social into service process.

The study found that companies that are “fully integrated” – meaning their social service strategy, teams and processes are completely connected and not viewed as separate from traditional areas – tend to respond quicker, be more strategic in their approach to customer engagement, and have enjoyed more success with their social service efforts.  Do you work at a fully integrated company?  Are you seeing positive results from your efforts?

5. 16% say they are very satisfied with their company’s efforts to engage customer on social networks for service and support.

When you look at the chart below, 32% of the survey population citing very positive impact from their social service efforts, it’s curious why only half of the population feels very good about company efforts in this area.

social service

This is pure speculation on my part, but I believe this signifies that employees would like to see their companies doing even more to empower them; to provide them with tools and training that will enable them to leverage social and mobile more effectively to create better customer experiences.  And if this is truly the case, it’s imperative for organizations to constantly look for ways to improve their people’s ability to stay aligned with the changing needs and expectations of the people they interact with every day – your customers.

So how does your organization stack up?  Are you making progress in your efforts to integrate social into your service efforts?  There is much more information available in the full report. We hope you’ll find a nugget or two that can help further those efforts.

To get a free copy of the 2014 Social Customer Engagement Index report you can click on this link to register to download the full report!


Lisa Teore, a senior marketing director at SAP, helps customer service professionals deliver service excellence and create brand advocates. Follow Lisa on Twitter – @lisateore.

Use this link to see the original blog on the Social Media Today site.

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