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 Chuck Schaeffer Social Customer Service For Financial Services Institutions


How Financial Services Leaders Are Making Social Business Profitable Business

The tremendous adoption of social media has created a digital divide whereby most consumers are social but most financial services institutions are not. The problem is exacerbated by FSIs that first adopt social media for marketing purposes. Sure, social marketing is a big opportunity for FSIs, but it's also a continuation of adopting customer strategies that are easy or cheap for the company while ignoring what customers want.

So what do customers want? Social listening reveals that about 80 percent of financial services customer social comments are looking for help and customer service.

The top three social service scenarios for financial services institutions include customer self-service over social channels, social feedback and enterprise (aka internal) social networking.

Customer self-service is clearly preferred by a majority of Gen Y but it's much bigger than that. Many financial services customers such as high net worth individuals prefer to solve their own problems or do their own initial research before engaging with an advisor. Providing a self-service application with rich content, social ratings, knowledge-base and instant escalation to an FSI advisor, customer service representative (CSR) or other employee gives customers what they want 24 by 7. Self-service also acts to deflect calls from the contact center, which when done right both decreases service costs and increases customer satisfaction.

Social feedback uses surveys, polls and forums to capture customer sentiment over social networks. The social channels may be FSI managed or third party sites such as consumer review websites. Contact centers can adopt social listening tools to identify and follow-up on social sentiment that needs attention or resolution. For a more automated process, social listening tools can capture social comments based on a particular keywords and sentiment, create a ticket in the CRM application and route or assign the case to a CSR for follow-through. Automation can deliver a big time savings as only about 4 percent of comments posted to a brands Facebook or Google Plus page need responses. Using social listening technology to identify, capture and route that 4 percent saves staff from continuously weeding through the other 96 percent and then copying and pasting data into tickets for resolution.

Enterprise social networks use internal social tools to facilitate collaboration around a case or customer situation. These tools enable staff to communicate, collaborate, swarm, perform cross-departmental business process automation and connect CSRs with the best information and experts in the organization. CSRs and interested parties can subscribe to the select customers, cases or other information to which they want to be notified when updates occur. Information can be appended, tagged and searched, and since the information is shared and visible, all team members are on the same page and up to date with what's being communicated to the customer.

I've found this type of knowledge management facilitates new CSRs, or CSRs coming into new responsibilities particularly well. Internal social networks can also increase speed, or reduce case durations as any person subscribed to a feed can respond to a case, request or question in real-time. This also helps when you're not sure who to direct a question to as social groups offer topic based members and information. The value of internal social networks being tightly integrated with CRM is not lost on the CRM software publishers. CRM applications with built-in internal social networks include Microsoft Dynamics CRM with its Yammer integration, Oracle with its Social Relationship Management and Salesforce with Chatter.

Some leading financial services firms are experimenting with peer to peer community support. When properly moderated, this type of social service has proven successful in terms of customer satisfaction and delivers valuable user generated content. However, the regulatory nature of financial services requires additional diligence making this social service technique something to be explored by financial services firms with a mature social strategy.

Next: Social Products for Financial Services Institutions >>

Financial Services Social StrategyFinancial Services Social SellingFinancial Services Social MarketingFinancial Services Social SellingFinancial Services Social ProductsFinancial Services Reputation Management



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Social listening reveals that about 80 percent of financial services customer social comments are looking for help and customer service.


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