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Using Facebook Messenger Bots to Boost Your Business

Using Facebook Messenger Bots to Boost Your Business

Facebook Messenger is a free tool for all Facebook users, including businesses, that is accessible through both the website interface and a downloadable Messenger app available for all phone operating systems.

Its purpose is simply for communication, which is very important for any business with a profile.

Many users do some searching before committing to making a purchase and an easy way is to check a Facebook page or profile for further insights.

We’ve touched on this in other posts regarding providing great customer service and how users will use social media as their customer service channel but for many small businesses the usual answer is simply: that’s great to hear but we simply don’t have the time or manpower to monitor Facebook Messenger.

This becomes a problem when one of the metrics users can see is your typical response time to messages. In their minds, they are checking to see how responsive customer service is after making a purchase just in case they have any questions or issues, and if they see the average wait time to a response being 3 days, they’re not likely to buy.

To Read About the Algorithm Changes Happening on Facebook Read Our Post: 2018 Facebook Changes Put Community First

This is what has necessitated Facebook Messenger Bots but it has expanded greatly since.

The Bots now are something you can create yourself for your business. Depending on what you do, this can be as simple as providing support or as complicated as completing a full sales or marketing funnel task your website is typically used for.

Companies who allow online orders through their website can configure a custom bot to handle orders directly through messenger, which saves them from simply pointing the user back towards their website.

If your purpose is to share information through the platform you can create a bot that sends updates on your business to users through Messenger.

Companies like TechCrunch created their own bots users can add and once added, you can ask it questions or simply ask for updates.

It’s designed to act like a tech-savvy friend you can turn to when you have questions, which makes an excellent offering for a business that is known for reporting tech news.

The idea is to take your user’s journey beyond the task of searching and finding.

Bots are not limited to Facebook, but it is the biggest platform for them. Having a Messenger-driven Live Chat option on your website can make a big difference in your conversions and bounce rate.

Your users are more likely to stay when they see some level of interaction and engagement. When it goes well beyond simple canned responses and actually provides a service, you then have something real that can be used to give your business a big boost.

Why direct them back to your website when the purpose of the website can be completed right in the service channel?

To get these Bots set up right you’ll need to do a few things:

  1. Understand your customer’s reasons for interacting with your business
  2. Map that user’s journeys from interest to completion and then create those steps in the bot
  3. Create a voice for each purpose and draft a script that conveys genuinely helpful feedback to the user when prompted.
     
    If they’re looking for support, then make sure your support messages are drafted in a way that isn’t rigid or off putting.
     
    If they’re looking to purchase from you or book something with you then you should have an upbeat tone to the messages generated by the queries that leads the user to completing the transaction right in Messenger.
  4. Test them out yourself and rewrite as necessary. You may find you’ve missed something if you take the user’s position and message your own business.
     
    Try to complete a sale or request help in the form of service and see if you feel satisfied by what the Messenger Bot feeds back to you. If not then it’s time to revamp the bot!

It sounds that easy but it’s actually an evolving and strategic process so don’t treat this as a “set it and forget it” initiative. It’s important to monitor the stats and make adjustments to account for any areas that are not creating a perfect user experience.

If you have users following your business on Facebook just so they can get a hold of you (your bot) then you’re doing something right. You may even see website stats decrease but if those users are simply bypassing the step of using the site and you have better conversions through messenger then you’ve got it!

It is strongly advisable to seek professional help when creating these. Even with third party systems taking care of the code-related steps you will waste more time trying to become a Messenger Bot Expert than you think. And because of the time demand, a professional may likely wind up involved anyway.

Strategy, scripts, and code are important. Your users will see the end product so if you are interested in getting these set up for your business, please get in touch and our team will make sure your business’s bot is set up right.

Thanks for reading,
Mark Hare

P.S. If you liked what you read here, you will want to sign up for our newsletter to the right of the page where you’ll get notified every Thursday of that day’s blog post. Click here to also receive our free website guide: www.UltimateWebsiteGuide.ca

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Using Facebook Messenger Bots to Boost Your BusinessClick To Tweet

About the Author, Mark Hare

Mark Hare

Mark has been working in search engine optimization, paid online advertising, content marketing, and usability since 2005.

He has worked with hundreds of clients on a wide range of web based projects and is a strong proponent of white hat SEO techniques and link earning over building.


How Customer Service Creates a Referral-Based Business

This eTip is a recording of a Facebook Live show where I talked about customer service. I shared some stories about what happened to me over the holidays plus some insights on what we do at eVision Media to embrace customer service to earn a referral-based business.

Key Customer Service Tips

During our 16 or so years at eVision Media, the key customer service goals we strive to reach are:

  1. Answer your phone and emails promptly
  2. Be honest and upfront about delays and problems that affect your client
  3. Own mistakes and do what you can to make up for them
  4. Don’t over promise in your marketing messages and then under deliver
  5. Ensure your clients feel valued, heard and appreciated

If you liked what you saw here, please subscribe to our YouTube channel and newsletter so you can get updates and videos for small business entrepreneurs every week!

Until next time,
Susan Friesen

P.S. Are you ready to take your business to the next level? Our “All Under One Roof” boutique web development and digital marketing firm can help you make your vision a reality.

› CONTACT US TODAY

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

How Gratitude Really Works for Business Success plus my Christmas Wish

This eTip is a personal message from Taz (our cat) and myself about the power of gratitude (when done correctly.) I am also asking for feedback on sharing thanks with those that support you throughout the year.

I’d love to hear your thoughts – leave a comment below!

To your success,
Susan Friesen

P.S. Are you needing guidance on how to define your niche market and how to position yourself in your industry? Having a mentor to help you through this process can save you time and costly mistakes.

› FIND OUT MORE HERE

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

2017 Review: Content & Social Media Marketing Insights

2017 Review: Content & Social Media Marketing Insights

What eVision Media’s Year-End Analytics Revealed About our Top 3 Performing Articles and how these Insights Can Help Your Business Marketing in 2018

It’s the end of the year and businesses are wrapping up their 2017 activities and preparing for new opportunities in 2018.

Like many of you, we put a lot of time and effort into our business and branding. And one key element to all business marketing efforts is to look at the results in order to effectively plan out future marketing and business operation changes.

One key element to all business marketing efforts is to look at the results in order to effectively plan out future marketing and business operation changes.Click To Tweet

We recently set about doing our year-end review on our content marketing and social media efforts and wanted to share some of the insights we discovered in hopes you will get inspired to analyze your own efforts while planning for the year ahead.

Where and What to Analyze

One quick and easy way to go about your year-end review is to look at your online engagement from the past year. Whether it’s checking your social media stats or looking at your website traffic, lots can be gleaned from these types of analytics.

There are a few places to look for the stats you need: You can utilize Facebook Insights, Twitter Analytics, Google Analytics, or your blog stats.

Log into each of these and take a look at how your posts and articles performed. They can provide a lot of valuable information on how your business and marketing resonates with users.

If you’re stuck on social media and want to read more, please review our robust catalogue of content related to all things social media.

So what did our analytics tell us what our followers liked? Here’s 3 valuable insights learned from 3 of our tops posts this year:

  1. Communicating to Maintain Effective Client Relationships

    Not surprisingly this article from one of our guest authors, PR Specialist Susan Elford, offers similar advice to this one: listen!

    Communication is key to a successful business and when clients and followers communicate with you through social media, whether it’s by a direct comment, a share, or something else, you need to listen!

    Client relationships are a big deal for us and we like to build long-term ones by treating our clients with respect and listening to what they say.

    We don’t just hear it, we listen. We then adjust and improve to reflect the client’s expectations.

    So apply advice from the article like this:

    Use language and mannerisms your clients can relate to – use mirroring to deliver messages in a way that makes them feel comfortable.

    And apply the same recognition and response to your social media. If you’ve noticed some articles focus on something specific and your clients/audience are receptive to it by way of engagement, then in 2018 you should know what to do!

    Give them what they want and build your client-base by accepting what your followers like and expect from you. Communication is a very broad term and doesn’t always mean simply direct vocalization or emails.

  2. 10 Ways to Attracting Clients Through Kindness

    This article has our approach laid bare. We watch, listen, learn, and follow the golden rule: treat others as you would like to be treated.

    Open yourself to receiving both good and bad feedback and accept each as constructive.

    Assess the full picture of what is happening and understand where the feedback is coming from.

    We employ kindness and generosity all the time. It’s a big deal when put into practice and by following that and our other 9 steps from the article, we’ve seen our business and client-base grow consistently!

  3. Why Twitter Ads Boost Business & How to Create Them

    If your business isn’t on social media yet, then check out the link given at the start of this article.

    Social media is a BIG factor in most businesses and has effectively replaced a lot of other support channels as users go to for getting a response.

    So once you’re online it’s time to make the most of it. None of the businesses whose names we know are worth what they are today without requiring some paid component. Twitter is no exception.

    While Facebook offers advertising and Instagram as well (among all others) our article on Twitter’s paid promotion resonated with our audience. 110 shares through our website alone is a great indicator of the effectiveness of this content with our follower-base and potential clients!

    As stated in the article, diving into social media can have drawbacks so if you’re looking to get serious, it’s good to hire online marketers who know how to use social media for business.

    We don’t have any information on how effective our reader’s Twitter campaigns have been, but our clients have seen stellar results. From this we learned that within our content we have users who are anxious to expand their presence online and try new ways to reach new potential clients.

    Is this limited to Twitter? Probably not and the real message here is that when we give back to our clients and readers with free tips via content marketing strategies, we will see reciprocation by way of new leads and new clients.

So what did you learn this year from your content and social media marketing efforts? Take a look at your metrics (and if you don’t know how just let us know for a possible future article) and see what they tell you.

Then take that information into the board room and help make 2018 even better.

To your ongoing success,
Susan Friesen

New to Social Media and online marketing or find it overwhelming and confusing? Check out Social Blast: eMarketing for Entrepreneurs. It’s a monthly group coaching program for those just starting out or wanting more advanced strategies to help with their online marketing and social media efforts.
>> CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS

P.P.S. If you found this article helpful, please share it with your Twitter followers:

2017 Review: Content & Social Media Marketing Insights from @eVisionMediaClick To Tweet

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

Building a Successful Guilt-Free Business

In today’s eTip I spoke with Yvonne Hogenes from Malary’s and Firmawear Energy Wear (among other things) while at the Woman of Worth event recently and I grabbed her to talk about the guilt we can feel as moms when we’re balancing parenting with running a business.

I let Yvonne takes the reigns so she could share her advice for every mother out there who may have concerns about the lifestyle of an entrepreneurial mom.

Yvonne has some great words of wisdom for all mothers running a business


Yvonne:

I remember when my boys were 9, 11, and 13 it was a busy time with them just getting into sports, and I decided I had to follow my dream which wound up being my store Malary’s.

I knew at the time it would take a lot of time and energy, although had I known the real amount demanded I may have been more hesitant.

It’s very important to have a plan.

I did the hard work and mapped out my five-year plan before I took the plunge.

Once I dove in it was all consuming. And it has to be for it to work.

I felt guilty as a mom. My kids would laugh because if I sat down for 3 minutes on the coach, I was asleep.

Years later… my boys are in the business with me!

My boys knew why I was tired and they learned by example that having a strong work ethic brings success.

That support was not limited to my kids. My husband, my family, and my friends and staff carried me through to where I am today.

But the guilt that comes with being a mother was still there.

Accept that if you’re doing what you love your kids will learn by watching. What they learn is probably more valuable than any book lesson.

When they needed someone at their games to watch them play their dad was always there.

By giving myself room to work on my business I was able to succeed and everyone around me was able to help by picking up any slack.

I embraced my working mom lifestyle while going through it and now that my kids are employees they thank me for it.

Business owner is a tough role but 20 years later I’m still finding the same level of support that makes it all work.


How to get in touch with Yvonne

The best way is malarys.com which has links to Firma (which is a fantastic product) and other local designers she works with.

She’s in Cloverdale in Fraser Valley and features lots of local, Canadian designers so she’s well worth checking out.

If you’re a working mom or a mom thinking about getting into entrepreneurship and business and need help, then please get in touch. I have helped many women both mothers and not get into business and I would love to mentor you through the process of starting your own business.

If you liked what you saw here, please subscribe to our YouTube channel and newsletter so you can get updates and videos for small business entrepreneurs every week!

Until next time,
Susan Friesen

P.S. Are you ready to take your business to the next level? Our “All Under One Roof” boutique web development and digital marketing firm can help you make your vision a reality.

› CONTACT US TODAY

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

How to Avoid Turning Off Potential Clients

Today’s eTip is about how to avoid turning off potential new clients.

First impressions

Did you know it only takes 5 seconds for a website user to form an opinion of both you and your business?

In those 5 seconds they have judged whether or not they want to get to know you, whether to like you, and should they trust you. Those three components are essential to drawing in your ideal clients and making a connection.

This can all happen whenever anything you do as a business (or a person associated with your business) so it’s important to remember that your online presence can be judged based on more than just a blog post or retweet.

Is your social media too anti social?

Take a look at what you post and what you share.

Are your posts consistently negative or are they more positive?

Are you ranting and raving or are you offering solutions to problems?

All of your posts make an impression and say something about you to your possible new lead(s).

Is your personal presence professional for in person networking? How about your website? Does it say ‘professional’ or does it look home made?

Look at all aspects of your presence online and off and make sure you’re conveying a positive message if you want to attract your ideal clients.

You want all of your branding from your website to your social media and beyond to send a message to potential clients that you will be great to work with.

Keep track of it all and take a moment to asses whether or not all your materials are aligned in design and message and that they properly represent who you are and what you do. If you need any help with any of this please get in touch with me and my team and we’d be delighted to help.

The overall message here to make sure your personal and professional brand makes a positive statement so potential clients get a good idea of who you are, what you do, and why they should hire you/ buy from you.

If you have any questions about finding your ideal client please comment below and if you liked what you saw here please subscribe to our YouTube channel or newsletter so you can get updates and videos for small business entrepreneurs every week!

Until next time,
Susan Friesen

P.S. Are you ready to take your business to the next level? Our “All Under One Roof” boutique web development and digital marketing firm can help you make your vision a reality.

› CONTACT US TODAY
 

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

Communicating to maintain effective client relationships

Communicating to maintain effective client relationships

How you communicate directly impacts your client relationships

How often do you get yourself in trouble because a situation has been misunderstood?

How often do you have to tell people what you “really” meant or that you didn’t like how you learned about a situation?

How upset do your clients and customers get about a product being unavailable?

How much do you dread letting them know that the product isn’t available because of how they will react?

All these scenarios often have nothing to do with what you need to communicate but rather with how you deliver the message.

How you deliver the message plays out both in what I like to call big “C” communications – big corporate announcements and organizational strategy – and in little “c” communications – emails and difficult conversations for example.

Believe it or not, much of the way we think and behave is unconscious. What we value, what we believe, our memory of a situation and past behaviours all feed into how we receive and deliver information.

When we become aware of how we come across we can take control of how we communicate with others.Click To Tweet

And this isn’t just the “soft stuff” of business.

Neuroscientists have been studying human behaviour for decades. I turned to Neuro-linguistic Programming for Dummies by Romilla Ready and Kate Burton to provide some scientific backing for what has been intuitive for me for a long time.

Here are four ways neuroscience tells us we can help our audience be receptive to our message. To conclude, I’ll give you five practical tips to put this science into use.

  • Mirror your audience’s actions and behaviours

    Have you ever walked into a restaurant or bar and noticed how people are interacting with each other?

    Have you noticed groups of people who seem to dress similarly, or how married people seem to come to even look alike over time? Matching and mirroring is when you take on someone else’s style of behaviour as well as their skills, values, or beliefs in order to create rapport.

    This will make your audience feel comfortable and more likely to listen to what you have to say. You can deliberately match and mirror someone by:

    • Body postures and gestures
    • How quickly you breathe
    • How quickly you speak or move
    • How your voice sounds

    CAUTION: You don’t want to mimic people. There is a fine line between moving in rhythm with someone and fitting in, or mimicry. People will know if you are being insincere.

  • Listen so you know what people are looking for

    If you want to really have people buy into what you are saying, then you must truly be present and LISTEN. And that means making sure they know they have been heard.

    Acknowledge their point of view, understand where they are coming from and above all, be patient.

  • Build rapport when communicating virtually

    To build rapport in today’s age of virtual offices, make sure you:

    • Speak more slowly to ensure people can hear you
    • Make sure you have people’s attention before you make your point
    • Use people’s names more often than you might in face-to-face meetings so they feel included and heard
    • Visualise the person at the end of the phone line as you listen to the conversation
    • If you are in a video-conference, look into the camera and appear to be visually present (no escaping to Facebook during teleconferences here!)
    • Summarise the meeting afterwards and confirm via email what was decided upon
  • Use multiple ways of communicating to make sure your message gets across:

    Find out who your audience is. If they are audio listeners, the words you use will be important. If your audience is more visual, then graphs, charts and pictures will help them remember information.

    Kinaesthetic audiences will focus on the tone of your voice and the feeling they experienced upon receiving the information.

So what does this mean for your daily interactions with your clients?

  1. Ensure you have their attention before sharing your message.
  2. Did they understand what you had to say? Ask questions to probe their response to your conversation.
  3. Use language and mannerisms your clients can relate to – use mirroring to deliver messages in a way that makes them feel comfortable.
  4. Follow-up with email after decisions are made to ensure you’re both on the same page.
  5. Have you inspired them to act? Find out what they care about so you can better motivate them to participate in your desired outcome.

Following the tips included in this article will shape how you deliver your message and guarantee improved communications with your clients.

Take some time to truly understand and internalize these techniques and you will be well on your way to avoiding difficult situations.

About the Author, Susan Elford

Kathryn Wilking

Susan Elford, PR Strategist & Leadership Coach, works with start-ups and seasoned entrepreneurs to help them get real about their strengths and celebrate them so they get more of what they want; clients, exposure and success, while living a life of balance.

Visit Susan at www.elfordcommunications.com for traditional PR support and www.susanelford.com for a look into how she works with her coaching clients.


How Great Customer Service Gets You Business Referrals

Have you ever been frustrated by the lack of customer service from another company and vowed to never do business with them again? And most certainly never told anyone else about them?

This is why customer service is so vital to business success as I explain in this eTip episode on why it’s the primary reason we have such a high referral rate.

We get a lot of new customers based on the quality of our customer service.

Our referral rate is around the 90-95% range so I wanted to share our secrets for good customer service.

For us that means things like answering our phone, responding to emails quickly, and making sure our customer’s needs are taken care of.

Obviously you can’t do that 24/7 but having a solid response time is good business practice and your customers will appreciate you for it.

Respond to them in a timely manner and appreciate that their brand may be affected by what service they need you for.

People want to get information fast so making them wait is not good customer service.

If you don’t respond in a timely manner you risk pushing them towards your competition.

By providing a high level of customer service you demonstrate to the potential client that they can expect good work out of you if they commit to your business.

Sometimes your needs might need to be set aside while you put the customer first.

Dealing with difficult clients and mistakes wisely

No matter how much someone upsets you always make your best attempt at being professional and polite.

Even if you’re having a bad day consider they may be as well and the additional stress of bad customer service can really put them off your business.

If you do make a mistake own up to it and make it right. Mistakes happen and if you take responsibility for the error and solve the issue then your client will appreciate you more.

Let them know what steps you’ve taken to ensure those mistakes don’t happen ever again.

People don’t get mad about mistakes.

Your customers won’t get mad if you make a mistake. They will get mad if you don’t acknowledge the mistake or don’t take steps to address the mistake and prevent it from happening again.

Don’t lay blame with somebody else and by taking responsibility you show the customer you respect them, which will go a long way when they start looking for who to refer their friends to.

If one of your team members makes a mistake it’s still a reflection on you and your business.

Let them know you’re tackling the mistake and you’ll find they respond well to your professionalism.

When you’re in business you are in the people to people business so the more respect you pay to them the better. Treat your customers with respect and they will in turn refer their friends to you because they’ll know their friends will experience the same high level of customer service that you’ve provided to them.

If you have your own stories about how providing great customer service has helped you or has gained you a great new lead that turned into a client then please share them in the comments below.

Until next time,
Susan Friesen

Amplify! Business Academy

What If You Could Learn Social Media and Online Marketing Each Month With Ease – all at your own pace?

If you are new to Social Media and online marketing or find it overwhelming and confusing, my monthly group coaching program, AMPLIFY! Business Academy is a perfect way for you to incrementally learn the best strategies and tactics to help you grow your business online.

  • Uncover what it takes to execute a successful, revenue-driving social media strategy
  • Learn how to build relationships, trust, and brand awareness with your ideal customer
  • Discover actionable strategies to engage followers online
  • Master creating compelling content that’s always on target
  • Discern how to authentically differentiate your product or service offerings in a crowded marketplace
  • Find out the best times to post for higher readership
  • Stay abreast with the latest prospecting techniques to grow your list, groups and more…
  • Learn ways to engage through social media monitoring and listening

It’s a monthly group coaching program for those just starting out or wanting more advanced strategies to help with their online marketing and social media efforts.

› CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

Customer Service Strategies in a Digital World

Customer Service and PR in the Digital World

How to get your social media presence set up right so you can deal with customer complaints like a Pro

With social media being so prevalent, users often take to their favourite channel with their complaints.

75% of users surveyed said they include social media when evaluating a purchase.

32% want a response within 30 minutes and 42% expect a response in under an hour!

When you set up your social media keep that in mind.

How to use social media for customer service

Using social media to manage customer complaints may seem like a burden but the payoff is repeat business and happy customers.

Users often take to the majors like Twitter and Facebook.  Don’t shy away from either even if you’ve received some nasty feedback in the past.

When you initially set up your accounts you entered an email to register and you’ve probably noticed unless you changed the settings you get an email every time someone is active on your page/profile.

If you find this bothersome try creating an email like customerservice@example.com that forwards to your own account or the account of an employee whose job it is to monitor your online presence.

If it’s directed to your own email create a folder or label specifically for customer service or PR that these emails automatically go to. Don’t let it get lost in your emails though or you’ll miss alerts.

*Depending on your email setup this will vary in execution*

These alerts will let you know when you have a new comment or message on your profile.

When you get one have a response protocol ready. You don’t want to jump on a complaint and then have to wait 2 days for a decision-maker to draft their response.

One single meeting with your team on customer service/PR protocol on social platforms can save you a lot of headaches.

Have canned responses ready

Use Social Media to make your customers happy. Learn how to use social for customer serviceClick To Tweet

Canned responses refer to an automatically generated response that is prompted by the user contacting you. You may have seen these in the past and wondered how they get set up; now you get to set them up for yourself:

Twitter

Twitter rolled out some great tools last year for users who operate their business online:

https://business.twitter.com/i/settings/support

That link allows you to upgrade your account with messages that will automatically send to anyone who messages you directly and will show users that you provide this option.

You account will show your support hours and users will see that you take their feedback seriously.

This is a great signal to Google too – that you’re serious about your business and helping customers.

If you want more help using Twitter try our section dedicated to using Twitter for business.

Facebook

Facebook also allows you to set up your account to help communicate with customers via instant messaging. To turn on instant replies to any instant message to your business’s page follow these instructions:

To turn on Instant Replies for your Page:

  1. Click Settings at the top of your Page
  2. Click Messaging in the left column
  3. Below Response Assistant, click to select Yes next to Send Instant Replies to anyone who messages your Page
  4. To change your instant reply message, click Change, update the message and click Save

To turn off Instant Replies:

  1. Click Settings at the top of your Page
  2. Click Messaging in the left column
  3. Below Response Assistant, click to select No next to Send Instant Replies to anyone who messages your Page

You can direct users in both instances towards a contact email or simply let them know you’ll review their message within the next 24 hours and respond.

Once you have these set up, how you use them is entirely up to you. Each were only available within the last 2 years so not all businesses have adapted yet but those that have done it have set user’s expectations.

For more tips on using Facebook look at our section all about using Facebook to grow your business.

Monitor your reviews

Whether it’s Yelp (who’s results are now actually trending in SERPs) Google reviews, or Facebook reviews (if you have them turned on) it’s very important to stay on top of your reviews. There could be even more players in your niche so be on the lookout for sites dedicated to reviewing your products or services.

If you get a bad one you don’t want to remove it. That would defeat the purposes of the reviews.

Instead use the platform’s response option to address the reviewer’s concerns.

By demonstrating to users you take their feedback and complaints seriously you show them they can trust they’ll be treated with the same respect should things go wrong between you and them.

The point of PR and customer feedback should not be to defend yourself outright.

While some users may be serial complainers or even thieves always assume the best in the customer.

Use their complaint or question as an opportunity to possibly address something within your business you should have paid attention to a long time ago.

Often you’ll find the customer has either made an error or there’s a genuine issue you need to address with your business.

Whatever the case, keep in mind what you post will be what users see when reading up on your company. Not only that but Google looks for signals of a bad business in online engagement and reviews as well.

Position yourself as a responsible business owner who will address their concerns, so whenever someone reads about your business they get the right impression.

Just because a lot of customer service has moved online doesn’t change the fact that your business needs to give a good impression to potential users/customers. Put a smile on people’s faces as much as possible and your social media can really help you grow.

To your ongoing success,
Susan Friesen

P.S. New to Social Media and online marketing or find it overwhelming and confusing? Check out Social Blast: eMarketing for Entrepreneurs. It’s a monthly group coaching program for those just starting out or wanting more advanced strategies to help with their online marketing and social media efforts.
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About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

The True Costs of Not Having a Customer Loyalty Plan

Customer Loyalty Plan

The ABC’s of Business Basics Series – L is for Loyalty

As the old expression states, “people come and people go.” In your personal life, it can be easy to shrug off a person and move on. However, when it’s your business, this can be a very costly attitude to adopt.

The creation and implementation of a customer loyalty plan is necessary for all small businesses.

Look at the costs of customer acquisition vs. customer retention. While sources vary, they do agree that it costs between 4 and 10 times more to find new customers than it does to keep the old ones happy.

First, let’s look at the cost of acquiring new customers.

Do you know how much your company spends on attracting new customers and getting them to buy? It’s called the ‘Cost of Acquisition.’

There are varying ways to flush out this important number. You can look at what it costs to send out an email, an advertisement, purchase Google Ad words, or arrange a visit from a sales person.

However, you also need to look at other costs such as training, agency costs (if you use one), or internal costs for marketing. Once this number is added up, owners are usually surprised at how high the initial costs of acquiring a new customer can be.

How about the customers you attract through the door or by getting them to click online and shop?

Here’s the reality for you. It can take several transactions with that customer before they become loyal (Source: www.refresher.com/the-real-costs-of-losing-customers/).

How much is it costing your company every time you attempt to draw them back?

If you are unsure of what to review, look at performance indicators like marketing and advertising costs, employee costs, cost-of-goods, the hard costs of keeping your business open such as rent, hydro etc.

Customer retention is the name of the business game. Here’s a statistic that should give you incentive: “A 5% increase in retention yields profit increases of 25% to 95%” (Source: Bain & Co. 1990).

So, in the big game of business and profit, it’s all about loyalty.

About the Author, Pamela Chatry

Pamela Chatry

Do you work too hard? Is your business in chaos? If you are struggling with business issues, contact Pamela Chatry for a complimentary assessment. Pamela has been a trusted and highly respected Business Consultant, Mentor for Women in Business, Self-Employment Advocate, Trainer and Keynote Speaker for over 25 years.

Visit www.pamelachatry.com or call her at 778-856-8970 for help in getting your business to its fullest potential.