Having the right tools on your side as a social media manager is essential. How else can you expect to handle all of your clients’ social accounts? But more importantly, how can you expect to do a good job of this whole managing thing? A major part of this is having the ability to remain socially connected even when you’re outside of your home or office, like when you’re in the middle of the grocery store perusing the tomatoes. This is even more so the case when you’re dealing in customer care. If you offer product support via social media of any kind, you need to be on it all the time. In this regard, the right social tools can make or break your career.
But I’m not just talking about having a smartphone or tablet on you at all times. Rather, I’m referring to the kinds of resources and tools you have at the ready to whip out at a moment’s notice. You can’t improvise here. You need to come to the party prepared.
Contrary to what you might think, none of this means you need to be on social media 24/7. You’d go nuts if you did that! But it does mean you need a plan. And if you want to be a real social superhero, you need to wear a well-stocked utility belt covering all the essentials and then some. Basically, be like Batman. Minus the growly voice. Well, you can adopt that gravelly tone if you want but I don’t know if it’ll help your social rep all that much.
Sprout Social just released a guide that details how to manage customer care on social media while on-the-go and it offers up several tips, some of which I just had to highlight here. With Batman flair, of course.
There’s no way you can be on social media all day and all night. It’s just not possible. Thankfully, several social tools exist that allow you schedule messages in advance. This way, you’ll reach current and potential customers whenever they might need you. Schedule some interesting curated content for midnight. Ask a question of your audience at 3 a.m. If you have global reach, you’ll be hitting customers in the middle of the day elsewhere. You can think of these scheduled in advance messages as your grappling gun. Why? Because they allow you to latch onto your audience, even when you’re far away — and in another timezone.
There are many tools available that make scheduling messages in advance easy. From HootSuite to Sprout Social to Buffer, you have plenty of options to choose from. And with your grappling gun tucked into your utility belt, you’ll feel confident leaving the house to run errands without putting the reputation of the brand of which you’re in charge at risk.
If you need a weapon that can knock down any question a customer fires your way, an online FAQ is the perfect solution. No matter what industry you’re in, people will tend to ask the same questions over and over again. It’s just the nature of the beast. So, when a customer tweets a question at you, simply provide a link to the frequently asked questions page on your site. This will allow the customer to get a much more thorough answer than they would’ve received via a tweet anyway.
Just make sure you’re not blindly sending out the FAQ link as a response to all questions, That Batarang will come back around and cut you on your defined jawbone if you do this. So, do all of us social media managers a favor and keep your responses personal.
By Batman Begins, Batman’s cape is made out of memory fiber that when electrically charged takes on the form of bat wings and can be used as a glider. So, that’s not elaborate or anything. And though it’s not technically tucked into his utility belt, the cape is very much so a thing the Dark Knight puts on his body before heading out of the bat cave for a midnight stroll. You can think of his cape as his protection. His safety net. And that’s precisely what a really good mobile app is for your social media efforts.
You can do all the planning in the world. You’ve scheduled the best posts. You’ve compiled an awesome FAQ. But there will still be people who tweet at you with an urgent question that you haven’t prepared for. So, when you’re sitting on the couch at night, and you hear that familiar ding of a new @ mention, you’ll be able to respond in comfort without having to get up and go to your computer. Selecting the right mobile app will mean getting push notifications, responding via an intuitive interface, and scheduling messages as described above.
A nifty thing I just learned about Sprout’s mobile app? You can assign the task of responding to a specific question to different people on your team. Imagine you’re just about to head into the movie theatre and before you silence your cell phone, you see an unanswered question. Simply assign the task then turn off your phone. You can relax and enjoy the film and feel safe that your brand and your customers are being taken care of while you’re away.
Holy Social Media Efficiency, Batman!
While it might seem challenging to put these systems in place, it’ll be well worth the effort, especially when you see positive results. Besides, who doesn’t want to feel a little more like the dark and mysterious Batman each time they leave the house? And who knows, maybe the next time you respond to a customer question on Twitter you’ll whisper “I’m Batman.” And it’ll sort of be true!
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