It’s often said that companies need to be where their customers are. Where do your dream clients like to spend time, both in person and online? For almost every business, that means being on Facebook. With almost 3 billion monthly active users, Facebook remains the world’s largest social media platform. So chances are, that’s where a lot of your customers are.
Over the past year, many businesses have found new and imaginative ways to connect with clients online. If you haven’t experimented with Facebook Messenger yet, now’s the time to do so. Messenger is a built-in chat feature that allows customers to connect with your help desk or customer service team. By bringing world-class service to a place where your clients already hang out online, you demonstrate that you know your clients, desire to make things easy for them, and care about their needs. Think about it—wouldn’t you rather your current and potential customers be able to reach you at the drop of a hat on a website they already spend significant time on instead of asking them to take additional steps to contact you?
Furthermore, Facebook Messenger can cut down on software costs. Instead of implementing a chatbot, you can simply use Messenger for free. You can even create automated responses for frequently asked questions, cutting back on the number of employee hours you need to pour into customer service. It really is a win-win, for both you and the client.
That being said, like all customer service tools, there are some important tips and tricks to keep in mind to ensure success. If you dive head-first into Messenger without knowing how the software works and how to best integrate it into your customer service strategy, you’re likely to drop the ball on some customers, which is obviously something you never want to do. By creating a set of standard operating procedures for the agents monitoring Messenger, you’ll ensure all customer inquiries are handled fairly and equally. But how do you set up those procedures, especially if Messenger isn’t a place you’ve dipped your customer service toes into before?
Here are three tips for conducting customer service over Facebook Messenger. These will help you craft goals—and plans to meet those goals—so that Messenger becomes a useful, important part of your overall customer service strategy.
Of course, customer service response time is always important. You don’t want to keep your customers waiting to get their questions answered or problems solved. But on Facebook Messenger, that response time is especially important because it’s public information! Facebook shares your “average response time” and even shares color-coded badges to show how good (or not so good) you are at responding to customers. If you take a long time to respond, other people will see that, and it may give your company a less-than-favorable reputation. If your customer service team is used to getting 2 or 3 days to respond, Facebook Messenger may not be a great fit for you. If you’re going to use Messenger, you really want to be able to respond within 24 hours on weekdays.
These badges are also different colors if you don’t respond at all. If you use Messenger for customer service, make sure you respond to every message. If there’s a problem that’s too large to handle over Messenger, you can simply point the customer to your call center phone number or your help desk e-mail. But don’t leave messages just hanging out in your in-box. Again, this is all shared publicly, so it’s essential you put your best efforts forward!
Incorporate Messenger into Your CRM
The tool you use for customer relationships, also known as customer relationship manager (CRM) software, may be able to be incorporated into Facebook Messenger. As technology continues to develop, more and more CRMs are becoming Messenger-friendly, so make sure the CRM you use can work seamlessly with the platform.
Why is this so important? One word: tracking. If your messages aren’t automatically given a ticket number and imported into your CRM, it will be easy to lose track of customers. The last thing you want is for a customer concern or question to fall through your pipeline. By integrating your CRM with Facebook Messenger, you’ll be able to effortlessly track your customer service interactions and make sure all customer problems are handled promptly. If your CRM doesn’t currently integrate with Messenger, make sure customer service agents are trained on how to properly import the information and track interactions that take place over Messenger.
Integrating your CRM with Messenger can also come in handy when it’s time to track leads. Are you getting a ton of inquiries via Messenger about your products or services? By integrating your CRM with Messenger, you can make sure those inquiries are put into your sales funnel and followed up on promptly.
One of the huge pros of Facebook Messenger is the ability to use photos and videos. Oftentimes, customers will send a photo of what’s wrong with their product. The agent responding needs to feel comfortable viewing images and potentially even sending images or video snippets back in order to help the customer efficiently. When someone’s describing a problem over the phone, it can be hard to really understand the issue. The ability to send a video of a malfunctioning product or a photo of less-than-ideal service can make a world of difference. The agents you select to use Facebook Messenger should be able to navigate the social media space quickly and with ease; you don’t want to have to teach someone the basics of Facebook when he or she is supposed to be responding to customers. Make sure the agents monitoring your Messenger in-box know how to use the various forms of multimedia Facebook offers and feel confident doing so.