I ran across this article on Bloomberg Businessweek.com about how Comcast communicates with disgruntled customers over Twitter. There is a lot of literature on the web about crisis management over social media, and Comcast follows the general rules that most of it swears by. But the really great thing about this article was that it followed around Frank, "Comcast's Twitter Man," as he interacted with customers. Essentially, we got to see him in action. Here is how Frank goes about his day:
1. Searches Comcast on Twitter many times daily
2. Reads all related Tweets that turn up
3. Responds directly to the customers tweeting about Comcast
Seems really simple, right? And though Comcast is a large company, similar strategies for handling crises directly and publicly over social media can work for smaller companies and credit unions as well. Some tips that I picked up from the way Frank communicated with customers:
- Respond quickly.
- Ask questions to be sure you understand the problem, and that your customer feels that you are listening.
- Be friendly, and help as best you can. If further communication is needed, DM the customer and ask for their phone number or email address.
- No matter what the complaint is, even if it doesn't seem legitimate, respond with the same level of care.
- Use punctuation carefully. Don't be afraid of smiley faces and exclamation points, but use them only when appropriate.