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It's social media best practice: be authentic and honest.
But when it comes to telling your followers what they probably don't want to hear, is there such a thing as too much candor?
Buckle up: we’re back with another dose of our weekly US digital marketing stats round-up.
This time we’re covering email’s continuing dominance as a customer service channel, the explosive rise of Snapchat and Netflix, and much more.
September's APAC digital marketing stats roundup includes figures on digital investment and enterprise roadmaps, ad spend, social customer care, smartphone penetration and video sharing.
For more on these topics and beyond, see our Internet Statistics Compendium.
It doesn’t take much to deescalate a situation, just a simple, honest admission of guilt and a heartfelt apology.
There is an art to it though and occasionally it will take more than “I’m sorry” to set something right, but in the recent few weeks I’ve received various communications with companies, many of which unsolicited, that have restored my faith in the world of online customer service.
Let’s take a look at a few examples and discuss how these emails and tweets have mastered the art of apologising.
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), who sound very serious and like you shouldn’t mess with them, has this week “finalised” its guidance for how financial services should use social media.
The FCA is basically a financial regulatory body, ensuring that firms run with consumers’ best interests at heart and provide appropriate products and services.
French Connection announced this week that almost a quarter of its sales took place online in 2014.
Ecommerce represents 23% of its total retail revenue, which is 20% up from the previous year and as also reported in InternetRetailing 24% of all orders were fulfilled using its click and collect service. This follows its recent investment in multichannel services, from the website platform to the warehouse.
Lets take a look at French Connection and examine how the retailer can improve its multichannel standing, paying particular attention to delivery, returns, mobile and social customer service.
The most successful brands utilising social customer service are the ones that are not only quick to respond, but also genuinely helpful and clearly written by a human.
This is relatively easy in retail, where it’s more acceptable to adopt a relaxed, fun tone of voice, but how difficult is it for a financial services brand to not only maintain an efficient customer service channel that fully complies with banking regulations but is also human?
Providing a great customer experience (CX) is impossible if you’re not implementing excellent and measurable customer service across every channel on which your customers can be found.
It used to be that a consumer would only come into contact with a single customer service representative in person or on the phone. The overall CX would succeed or fail based on that single interaction, which is a lot of pressure, not just for the agent, but for the entire company.
This is for the naysayers who think that social media is an alien terrain for B2B organisations.
This is also for those working within B2B who need to present a case to those higher up that social can work for their company.
This is also to celebrate the many B2B companies already using social in a way that puts a lot of B2C operations to shame.
One good thing about working in online retail is that nobody will catch you yawning behind the counter or drinking a cup of tea on the shop floor.
One bad thing about working in online retail is that customers expect the same quality of service from you as they would a face-to-face interaction, especially if things go wrong.
Yesterday it was announced that Sainsbury’s is the most socially influential retail brand on Twitter based on its Klout score.
If you’re not aware of what a Klout score is, it’s an online social popularity measurement that leaves the more egotistically fragile of us weeping alone in a stationery cupboard. It also has its detractors.
To contradict Sainsbury’s achievement, over the past six months, supermarket rival Tesco has fought its way to the top of Leaderboarded’s UK Twitter Social Customer Care table, overtaking previous top-spot holders Virgin Media and… yes... Sainsbury’s.
In a continuing series of investigations into how companies use social for customer care, last week I took to Twitter, posed as an innocent customer and asked some of the most popular US retailers the same query.
The query would also test each brand’s true multichannel capabilities: “can I return an item bought online to my nearest branch?”
With this investigation we'll be testing their response times and ability to satisfyingly bring a resolution to the query.
Other matters taken into consideration are whether the reply was a personal, human response, whether the retailer either operated a separate customer service Twitter account from the main one or whether it stated that the main account was also there for customer enquiries and whether operating hours were clearly stated.
Let’s take a look at the results…