How To Be a Customer Service Champion with Social Video – Part 2

In my last article, I talked about the increased expectations customers have for direct, personal and helpful engagement from the brands they give their business to, especially with social media and online video content.  To help retailers keep up with this growing trend, I have compiled 10 tips below featuring actual businesses who have been successfully improving customer loyalty with online video.

10 Ways To Be a Customer Service Champion with Social Video

  1. Give your customers a voice – Zappos allows customers to submit videos to the company’s customer-reserved YouTube channel – where customers can share a testimonial and “tell the world their Zappos story.” [youtube]7L0DOcNDzvo[/youtube]
  2. Chat live with a customer specialist – Lands’ End’s site features the ability to do live video chat with customer care specialists.
  3. Help them with how-to’s, tutorials, and DIYsCrutchfield Electronics has a vast “learning center” featuring videos of their customer specialists answering questions about products. They are very good about creating customer-centric conversations with their videos.  Keep in mind, they don’t have to be videos specifically about your products. They can also be about regular lifestyle activities you know your customers do.  (Check out my earlier article on tips for “how-to” product videos.)
  4. Go beyond an initial apology – FedEx did a customer apology videoafter a video of a FedEx guy throwing a computer monitor over a residential gate went viral, but they never did a follow-up showing improved customer care. On the other hand, Domino’s Pizza went above and beyond with a “turnaround video,” and an ongoing series of videos featuring them engaging with real customers.[youtube]AH5R56jILag[/youtube]
  5. Automate monitoring of video results – It seriously amazes me how easy it is to monitor videos trending about your brand, yet some brands act like it doesn’t exist! That is how United Airlines behaved for a long time with the “United Breaks Guitars” viral video until it seriously affected their stock value. A very simple way to keep on top of trending videos is to go to Google Alerts, and set up a search query for all of your brand-related keywords.  Include both video-only results and general results with the word “video” in your search term.
  6. Measure audience engagement to your newly released videos – Pay attention to how general audiences and targeted customers are talking about your product and your brand after a video launch.  Monitor the original video’s location (either on your website or a video sharing site like YouTube), as well as on influential social media networks and blog sites.
  7. Video FAQs – This should be a no-brainer. Have a friendly-sounding and easy-to-understand spokesperson address and answer all of the common questions your customers ask, and put them to a video.
  8. Test out video playback – A lot of businesses fail to do user testing with their online video experience.  You need to be testing your video across multiple devices (web, browser, OS, tablet, smartphone), codecs (HTML5 or Flash), and bandwidth capabilities (broadband or cellular). You would naturally test out your products in many possible uses before putting them on market, right? It makes just as much sense to test to make sure your customers have a seamless online video user experience.
  9. Have real customer testimonials – They work not just because they’re advocating the brand and the product, but because shoppers can relate better to a video featuring someone like them. I definitely recommend curating videos that are already available online. The Edelman 2012 Trust Barometer report found that consumer-generated video testimonials are often considered to be more trustworthy and persuasive than other professionally-generated, brand-owned videos.  Here’s a great example of the surprise “video thank you” with Domino’s Pizza’s Ramon DeLeon:

Always look to empower and incentivize customers to make and share videos!

One of the single best ways companies today can benefit from the opportunities in online video is to promote the video content that their customers are already doing, and make them the stars.

“Rather than trying to be the one generating all the video and other content about your business, all the time, instead stimulate your existing customers so they will comment about you in their own Facebook pages, Tweets, reviews, and blogs, and for that matter in their more private phone calls, emails, text messages, and even face-to-face conversations.  They have the experience with your brand, but they need some motivation, content, and guidance.  We call it ‘identifying & arming customer advocates.’ It’s part database marketing, part PR, part promotions, and part relationship marketing.  Its time has come.”

– Doug Pruden, Customer Experience Partners