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Social CRM Use Case 3: Optimize and socialize your member services

Our [SocialFish] definition of Social CRM is “the discipline of applying social media to membership management”, and the 12 use cases in our white paper, ROI and the Impact of Social CRM, show this in action.  Here’s the third of a series of blog posts for Avectra on the use cases – including four completely new ones – and we want to hear from you if these are possible for YOUR association.  In ALL cases, you should be building your community on social media sites before you even think about ROI.

Optimize and socialize your member services
[Possible Now]
USE CASE: Two full-time junior staff people man an association’s member services center. They spend the majority of their time answering the phones and directing calls to other staff members. Turn over in the position is quite high–it’s not the most fulfilling job–and one of the staffers is set to leave to attend grad school in the fall. The Social CRM team turns to the new community platform to create a member question center. Working with the two junior staffers, the team builds a comprehensive, searchable question and answer list, plus a way for members to easily ask new questions or use live chat to interact with the member services center. Since the member question center has gone live, the team has also seen members answering other members’ questions. The Social CRM team changes the job descriptions for the junior staffers. The new goal is to keep the database up-to-date and accurate, plus handle 50% more inquiries without assistance from other staff, saving time for everyone.

The recipe:

  • Your goal – responding quickly to customer service questions, wherever they may appear.  Reducing repetition of the same answers to individuals.
  • ROI = more questions answered, faster response time, reduced man hours through better efficiency.
  • Level – Intermediate
  • Tools – community platform, social media management system for team access to social accounts
  • Low hanging fruit – website search queries with few results (meaning the answer was not found), basic monitoring of Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn.

What you need:

  • Online Frequently Asked Questions – can be a page on the website or a database or forum, but must be searchable and outside the member wall.
  • Ability to respond on social media sites (member services staff must have posting privileges)
  • Metrics for search queries, views, response tracking.

This use case has to do with matching basic monitoring capabilities with proactive customer service.  So if someone asks, “what’s the registration cost for the Annual meeting?” or “how do I update my email preferences?” on Facebook, there is a process in place and a standard FAQ to point not just that individual to, but anyone else who might be lurking on the Facebook page and wondering the same thing.  One association we work with has a young customer service team who has been given the go-ahead to not just create an FAQ but try manning an online chat window, based on their observations that they answer the same few questions all the time by phone.  This use case might allow you both streamline (better process) and expand (more members served) your customer service abilities at the same time, and provide space for your customer service team – who are closest to your members – to gain more valuable community management skills.

What do you think? Are you doing this already?

What other possibilities have you seen for improving customer service using social media?


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