Therefore, it’s safe to say that social messaging falls into this category, in no small way. Social channels have transformed the way we interact with each other, and notably so in B2C communication.
Businesses that were considering integrating social messaging into their social media and marketing strategy found themselves thrust into this melee in March 2020 - whether they liked it or not. Covid created a sink or swim situation which accelerated digital interactions between customer and company.
Have you set up a solid social messaging strategy? Are you wondering how to go about it? Are you looking for the right software to facilitate your needs?
Great! You’re asking all the right questions. Let’s answer them for you.
Why do People Love Social Media?
If these past two years have taught us anything, it’s to ask more questions. Don’t be afraid to ask why, how, or when. Once you have a handle on the flood of information out there, then you’re in a far better position to make the right decisions for your business.
So, our question to you is, why do you think people love social media?
The answer to this question holds the key to how to interact with them on social messaging platforms, what they are more likely to respond to, and what they really want. No matter who we are or where we live, we - as humans - have the same basic psychological and emotional needs. Many of these are satisfied by social media.
Here’s what that looks like.
A Sense of Community
Social media has created dozens of communities with a low barrier to entry, and that doesn’t rely on location, cost, or travel. When we belong to a community, it satisfies our need for a sense of family, especially in the fragmented world that we occupy right now.
Connecting - Past & Present
Our high school and college friends, those kids next door that we grew up with, and the family friends that we know so well all form part of the tapestry of our lives. Reconnecting with them on social channels, no matter where they live is incredibly rewarding. These are the people who knew us in our formative years, and we have a unique bond with them.
Covid aside, many of our jobs require hours in front of a computer screen. Our recreational time, likewise, consists of screens and often headphones. Social media offers us a way to enjoy a level of social interaction when we can’t or don’t get out as much as we’d like.
Those that may be shy or withdrawn find that initial conversations on social messaging channels make real-life interactions significantly easier. Relationships that may never have had a chance to occur can flourish when the time is right.
Social channels offer the opportunity to learn about good causes that we can get behind. This is without having to move in the same circles as those who spend their weekends cleaning up beaches or walking dogs. We can find like-minded people with similar interests, or we can seek out new pursuits safely, and at our own pace.
We Have a Voice
We may call them “keyboard warriors” but it’s a fact that social media provides a great platform for expression. Yes, some go overboard and end up getting banned from groups or pages, but many of us just want to be heard. This spills over into the desire to be within the “inner circle” of clubs, groups, or even as a preferred and valued customer to a big-name business.
We Want Control
Caller ID, blocking, setting ‘away’ messages - these all allow us to control how we interact with others. In a hyperconnected world, this is important. Social messaging platforms offer us the choice of instant response or none at all. We can track whether or not our messages have been delivered or seen, and we can use the medium we are most comfortable with.
5 Reasons to Use Social Messaging
It’s clear that social media offers something more than memes or videos of people falling over. Rather, these channels have, in their own unique ways, created a platform for us all to interact in the way we prefer. Social messaging apps such as WhatsApp, Telegram, and Messenger are the natural evolution of a new way of communicating.
We’ve highlighted five compelling reasons why your business should include social messaging in your social media strategy.
1. It’s Where the People Are
Those clichés about fishing where the fish are and not reinventing the wheel are applicable here.
Hootsuite’s Digital 2021 Report tells us that there are currently:
- 2 billion WhatsApp users
- 1.3 billion users on Facebook Messenger
- 1.2 billion WeChat/Weixin users
With numbers like this, it makes sense to focus your marketing lens on these fruitful, busy channels.
We may make fun of Gen X and Boomers and their lack of technical know-how, but the fact is, we are more likely to use a platform that we’re familiar and comfortable with. Those little updates and idiosyncrasies unique to each app can be frustrating to navigate, and especially so if you have another (easier) option.
If your audience is on WhatsApp, then offering them an open channel to your team, your products, or your services on this platform makes sense. It also offers them the valuable element of control.
2. Personalise at Scale
We’ve said it before; nobody wants to feel like a number. Therefore, personalised service equals happy, loyal customers.
“What truly makes for a good experience? Speed. Convenience. Consistency. Friendliness. And human touch—that is, creating real connections by making technology feel more human and giving employees what they need to create better customer experiences.”1Social messaging does this really, really well. The tech that drives these versatile channels makes it a simple task to personalise your customer experience. Data-driven systems have the ability to offer up a vast amount of information and allow smart businesses the opportunity to put it to good use.
Identify and reach precise audiences with personalised messages to engage and talk to what really interests them.
3. Create Positive Customer Service Experiences
“Customer experience (CX) is the new marketing battlefront. More than two-thirds of marketers responsible for CX say their companies compete mostly on the basis of CX, according to the 2017 Gartner Customer Experience in Marketing Survey. And in two years’ time, 81% say they expect to be competing mostly or completely on the basis of CX.”
These statistics from Gartner are already four years old. In your opinion, does this still ring true? Do you feel that you’re competing for less on price and product and more on how you make your customers feel?
Therefore, providing fast, friendly, and efficient service via social messaging removes the headache of automated messages, on-hold music, and a 20-minute call with an agent who has no idea who you are.
Social messaging grants your customer a voice, and the opportunity to feel like they’re part of something.
4. Integrate into Existing Business Systems
Omnichannel communication is the new black. Therefore, creating a cohesive space where customers on all platforms receive the same high level of service - at scale - is critical. Most good CRMs can integrate social messaging to provide superior service, but if not, there are brilliant tools such as the Mobile Service Cloud. This omnichannel customer engagement solution provides just what you need to start meaningful conversations.
Messaging bots and various automation tools speed up communications, freeing up your team to get the more important stuff done. These smart little bots can be set up on your website, app, or - you guessed it - your social messaging platform of choice.
5. Gain Valuable Insights
Tying social messaging into your marketing strategy helps to unlock insights into sales, marketing, customer service, and product strategies. In-depth reporting allows you to understand your customers - what they need, what they respond to, and why.
There’s no doubt that a proactive approach to customer service is going to be well-received and result in a raving fan; the insights that make this possible are available to forward-thinking businesses. Likewise, managing your brand reputation online is a cinch with the right tools and data.
Putting the Puzzle Together
Unless you’re a highly technical person then you may find the concept of implementing social messaging for social media and marketing campaigns to be far too higher-grade to get your head around.
The great news is that you don’t have to.
We know a guy - well, a team of professional people - who understand exactly how to merge your social messaging needs with your existing systems for optimal results.