Social media is an incredibly powerful tool for businesses today. It has also created expectations among consumers when it comes to factors such as speed of response – for example, those businesses that don’t respond to messages on social media experience a 15% increase in churn. If you’re looking to optimise social media to build better customer relationships then there are some simple ways to do it.

1. Don’t focus on what’s in it for you

Use your social media profiles to deliver genuinely interesting and useful content to your followers. If you don’t know what your target audience is interested in or talking about online then use listening tools to help you identify this.

2. Be responsive

If you’re going to have a presence on social media it’s important to commit to it or you could end up damaging your customer relationships. 32% of customers expect to hear back from brands within half an hour online. Generally, the more responsive you are, the stronger the relationships you can build.

3. Personalisation is key

Many brands use bots to reach as many consumers as possible – this is fine as long as it’s followed up by communication with a human element at some point. Customers really appreciate social media communication that is subtly personalised, such as using someone’s name or adopting a friendly, casual tone.

4. Show some appreciation

This isn’t about constantly incentivising people to follow you but rewarding those that do. Social competitions and contests are a great way to build engagement and loyalty towards your brand. You can also create content that recognises followers, their own achievements and goals e.g. client or follower of the month.

5. Perfect your social tone of voice

If you only have one goal for tone of voice on social media make it this: be a human being. You can give social profiles a more human feel by featuring staff in videos or images, using emojis and adopting a sense of fun and playfulness, as well as taking part in the chats that matter to your customers.

6. Don’t ignore the negative feedback

70% of consumers use social platforms to raise issues. If you’re using social listening tools and these are throwing up negative feedback about your brand this is an opportunity to change the way you do things to improve customer relations in the future.

7. Be the pleasant surprise in your customer’s day

From exceptional customer support to surprise gifts or excellent content, if your social media platform is exciting and enjoyable to engage with people will want to stick around – both as a follower and a customer.

8. User generated content is queen

In fact, user generated photos are five times more likely to convert customers than brand photos. Find ways to integrate user generated content into your social profiles and strategy and you’ll see benefits as a result.

Social media is a simple and effective opportunity to improve customer relationships in a way that can have a tangible impact on the bottom line of your business. If you’d like to discuss how we might be able to help you do this, get in touch.