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Brands are Still Terrible at Inbound Social

Ever get booted off a flight because it is overbooked or have a flight canceled because the airline deemed it not full enough to be worth it for them? If you have then you have definitely felt the frustration of not feeling heard, valued or accommodated after events happened through no fault of your own. Social media, however, has given all consumers - not just travelers - a larger platform to share their grievances and feel empowered by doing so.

In fact, according to the Q3 2017 Sprout Social Index, 4 in 5 consumers think social media has increased accountability for businesses. What's more, nearly half (46 percent) of consumers have used social to "call out" brands and 55 percent of consumers call out brands on social to get a resolution or response. And, it's not just millennials using the platform to be heard. While millennials are more likely to call out a brand on social media than any other generation, 39 percent of all other generations have also done so. 
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The response rate from brands on social media, however, is still extremely low across industries. The highest is response rate is a low 19 percent from retailers.
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When brands do not respond, Sprout Social's data shows that they will take a number of actions with the most-likely action being contacting the brand on another channel. The brand damage has been done though. Fifty-percent of consumers will boycott a brand if they receive a poor response on social media. Consumers are more than willing to continue doing business with a brand, however, if it responds well to their social complaint - posting about the positive experience, buying from them again, etc. 
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Poor experiences are frustrating enough for consumers without brands not responding to them on the channel they wish to be heard on. To learn more, read our feature "Choice and Context in Digital Customer Service."
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