14 nice things you can do for your customers using social media

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Without customers, your business will never survive, I was inspired by a blog post by Ian Lurie, where Ian wrote about nice things that businesses can do for their customers, so I decide to write about how you can do nice things for your customers with the help of social media. In no particular order, here are some ways I think you can use social media for your customers.

1) Respond to your customers. This is one of the most important things you can actually do, some people are asking you question because they are interested. You’re actually losing customers when you don’t respond.

2) Reward your customer, whether it’s checking into your business or saying nice things about your business. You can reward them with a simple coupon, free meal or free snacks. Think long term.

3) Promote your customers. Find ways to promote your customers on social media, whether it’s having a customer of the week/month on your Facebook wall or blog about your customers.

4) Thank your customers. People love to feel appreciated; a thank you note makes someone feel special. If your customers said nice things about you on twitter, say “thank you”

5) Invite your customers to offline events. If you have a local event, why not invite your customers there? A restaurant invited active yelp reviewers to their launching,  to eat for free and they can decide if they want to leave a comment or not.

6) Write/comment on their blog – If your customers write about you on their blog, you can respond to them on their comment, this is what @FourSeasons Hotel does amazingly.

7) Treat every customer special. Your customers want to be pampered, I know I do! When @thomasmarzano posted on twitter that he had a huge bath tub in his hotel room at Four Seasons, they gave him a small gift so that he can use it in the bathtub, they even wrote him a personalized note.

8) Apologies if you’ve done something wrong, @ramon_deleon apologized to one of their customer through a video on youtube when they messed the customers order.

9) Do something unique. Talking about unique Porche celebrated their 1,000,000 fans on facebook by designing a vinyl wraparound for their GT3 R Hybrid that included names of all their 1 million fans.

10) Customer service is important, if you do not have customer service on twitter or any social networking sites, chances are, you are losing customers. @UsAirways chose not to respond their customers on twitter, and their customers aren’t happy about this.

11) Surprise your customers – Everyone loves surprises, that is what Pretzel Crisps did, they delivered their snacks to customers offline personally.

12) Ask your customers for feedback – Ask your customers for feedback, sometimes customers have something on their mind that they want to share. Feedbacks are very valuable for you to improve your business, ask and you shall receive.

13) Make it easy for customers – If customers have a problem, inquiries, questions, make it easy for them to look for you. Have a clear way for them to find you on social networking sites.

14) BE SOCIAL. Do not forget that.

Do you have anything to add? Feel free to add them, would love to hear about it.

photo credits: Northwest Georgia

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  • http://socialmediafire.wordpress.com/ Mike

    #1 is definitely NUMBER 1 on this list. There’s just something about responding to people when they engage you that is CRITICAL to being successful, in any field.

  • http://www.markshaw.biz Mark Shaw

    well done Aaron.. another top post on how brands and businesses can utilise Twitter and social media.. 14 very important ideas which sadly so many brands or businesses fail to do… take a look at @raybanglassesus a classic broadcasting style that misses so much of the opportunities out there…

    Mark

  • Kennedy

    Remember others interests are important I think. Whenever I see or hear something (or someone) I know matches up with someone else, I connect them together.

    It can be a photo, an article, a new friend of mine that matches old friends of mine.

    Introductions are something I love best. It’s great to watch new friendships click in social media.

  • Aaron

    I agree Mike, no one likes to be ignored, if someone ignores me when if I try to do business with them, I know I they will lose me as a customer, thanks for taking the time to comment.

  • Aaron

    Hi Mark,

    Thank you for taking the time to comment, indeed most businesses fail to do in many, especially @USairways on responding to customers. Hopefully someone will wake them up pretty soon. Indeed, @raybanglassesus is a classic example of great brand, bad twitter experience.

    Aaron

  • Aaron

    Hello Kennedy,

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts, certainly one which I have not considered yet, seeing it can be tough to remember so many things, but with the help with so many tools, it can certainly make it more worthwhile and customers will definitely appreciate it.

    I love introducing and help people to connect with another too. Love the feeling.

    Aaron

  • http://socialmediafire.wordpress.com/ Mike

    The question is: How does somebody like you (who has TONS of followers on Twitter) have the time to reply back to those tweeting with you?

  • Aaron

    I try my best! That is how.
    Not going to deny sometimes I miss tweets especially when I am missing in action for more than 12 hours, I get a lot of tweets which I am unable to attend to because I focus more on recent tweets. I do try with the help of cotweet since with cotweet i can make sure that I respond to all the @replies

  • http://www.brandontwyford.com Brandon Twyford

    Great, insightful post Aaron. I think these all point to the overall goal of making your customers feel important. Make them feel like they are being heard and acknowledged. In my social media duties for one of the companies I work with, I’ve noticed that when someone comments on a tweet or an article and we don’t reply back for whatever reason, usually that person won’t comment again.

    Engagement is key!

    Thanks for the great post.

  • http://nancyadavis.wordpress.com/ Nancy Davis

    Hi Aaron,

    I found your blog on Twitter, and I agree with your whole list. A list like this can be used also for bosses to do for their staff.

    It really is such common sense that you would think it would be second nature by now. Sadly, we need to be reminded to thank our customers.

    I have been reading The Thank You Economy by Gary Vaynerchuk and he really talks about appreciating all of our customers and going above and beyond to create an extraordinary experience for the customer.

    Businesses that are good to their customers will stay in business far longer than those that take their customers for granted.

    Great list thanks for posting.

  • Aaron

    Great to see you here Brandon, wow! thank you for sharing that experience, will certainly remember that for future post. Will definitely quote you for sure.

    Makes me wonder what happens if we personally personalize every thank you for retweeting a blog post. Definitely work testing it out.

    “According to Brandon…” :)

  • Aaron

    Hi Nancy,

    Sometimes bosses need to be educated as they don’t see the social aspects in social media, the one below them are usually the once who get it first. It takes time but its worth it for sure. Indeed most of them are common sense yet we all forget about it, we forget how to treat customers like humans on twitter and not like subjects.

    Oh! Gary’s book always amazing, too bad I have no chance to read it yet. Gary is one of the few that understands the true power of being social and he does it amazigly.

    Indeed customers will definitely be more loyal if they are treated well.

    Thank you for taking the time to comment Nancy.

    Aaron

  • http://diyblogger.net Dino Dogan

    I love the idea of making a video to say Im sorry to a specific customer. Tis is a great list of Dos, Aaron. Once again, awesome work :-)

  • http://www.wsinegociosenweb.com Ruben Castellanos

    Very Good article,very clear and straight to the point.I will add that Social Media is not only for customer relationship, you can use it for recruitment by HR or by project management with suppliers,employees feedback or new ideas,crisis management. etc. etc.

  • http://prioritypets.blogspot.com Julia@PriorityPets

    Thanks for these great tips. Recently I had a chance to put tips #1 and #2 into action.

    When one of my clients called to let me know of a problem, after I apologized on the phone, I wrote a letter and included a gift certificate for a free service for future use. I can’t change what happened, but I can hopefully keep a client by going above and beyond what is required.

  • http://www.invitationsbydeborah.com Deborah Carasso

    Very nice article. It’s primarily customer service which I pride my self on, but there isn’t much of it out there. I even apologize if for some reason (like my e-mails not being forwarded last week) for not replying quickly enough. I like to respond asap. Thanks for the information.

    Deborah Carasso, Unique Invitations by Deborah Burman Carasso

  • http://www.yourvirtualwizard.com Janine Gregor

    Hi Aaron,

    Great blog post!

    Thanking customers using social media goes a long way! I agree! I also like to help promote events for my ‘past’ customers who may have used my virtual assistant services for short-term projects. I’m doing them a favor and I still keep in touch with them perhaps they will connect with me at a later date, but if not, I feel good helping out.

    When they come out with an ebook, I also offer to write a review, which they appreciate. Then that review gets tweeted, posted, etc.

    I thank you! And I retweeted and posted your article on my FB page to say ‘thanks’.

    Janine

  • http://wordsdonewrite.blogspot.com Amber Avines

    Great list, Aaron! It’s amazing how so many businesses are still missing the boat on this stuff. If we could email your list to all the companies we do business with, they’d be better for it!

    As for Pretzel Crisps, they’re amazing (I wrote a blog post about my experience with them and about their campaign. Amazing approach!). Some businesses are really embracing the power of social media but, unfortunately, most aren’t. Or they’re doing it wrong. Your list is a real public service!

    Amber @wordsdonewrite

  • http://www.timvidra.blogspot.com Tim Vidra

    A wonderful post and you could go back 20 years and use this list without even knowing what social media is. It really is simply good old “Customer Service”. As a matter of fact I am using this in my next meeting.

    E.A.T.

  • http://askaaronlee.com Aaron

    Hi D,

    Thanks for the comment D, indeed its a great way as it shows sincerity, hopefully more businesses will adopt videos soon. I see it being integrated into more businesses.

  • http://askaaronlee.com Aaron

    Hi Ruben,

    Indeed it can be used for company purposes too, I wanted to write more about that in the future but I guess you already stated more which I wanted to cover. You could write it too! :)

  • http://askaaronlee.com Aaron

    Thank you for sharing your great story with us, indeed that we can’t change what happen we can certainly sweeten things up. Great way to keep a client.

    Will certainly keep this in mind.

  • http://askaaronlee.com Aaron

    Looking at the industry you’re in, I think most of them will want quick replies, must be tough! Keep up the great work Deborah.

    Thanks for commenting.

  • http://askaaronlee.com Aaron

    Thank you Janine,

    Thank you for retweeting and posting this on your facebook, of course I will thank you in my ways too which you will find out soon enough. :)

    I think you’re doing an amazing job promoting past clients, i am sure those clients feel appreciated and will recommend you to their friends, I know I would.

    Aaron

  • http://askaaronlee.com Aaron

    Hi Amber,

    Looks like Pretzel Crisps is winning hearts of everyone. They approach @geekbabe on twitter and I wrote about it. Pretzel Crisps contacted me via email and thank me for the blog post and offered me their snacks via snail mail. Certainly a great approach doing everything right.

    Indeed most businesses aren’t doing it, they don’t feel they need or understand that most of this are long term. Some are looking for the quick buck and trying to monetize too soon in my honest opinion.

    Thanks for dropping by.

  • http://askaaronlee.com Aaron

    Indeed,

    Its just simple customer service actually, just with the help of social media or social networking sites, it is actually enhancing the experience digitally. A great way to do it too seeing that most of the people are already online.

    Cheers Tim!

  • http://blog.powerserve.net Powerserve

    #12 shouldn’t be overlooked.

    Our best results in social media have been from simply asking our followers what they’ve to see more or less of. We take their comments seriously and use them to alter our strategies. And we always thank them for their feedback. It’s an excellent way of showing individuals that their comments and suggestions make a difference.

    Thanks for the excellent post!

  • http://wordsdonewrite.blogspot.com Amber Avines

    Monetize too soon! Yes, that’s for sure.

    People ask me all the time how to do social media so they can get immediate results and cash. I try to explain to them that it doesn’t work that way, but they don’t understand it’s a process.

    Everyone wants a shortcut. Your list is a great rundown of what it takes to succeed!

  • Drew C David

    Thanks for a great list and the awesome examples – this really made the points come alive!

    An even bigger thanks to you for always living these things out!

  • http://www.ricardobueno.com Ricardo Bueno

    Number 1 & 14 resonate with me the most. First of all, customers want to feel acknowledged. When they raise a concern, respond and show them that you care. When they give you praise, say “thanks, happy to help!” Basically, always acknowledge them and they’ll be in your corner because they know that you care.

    As for “being social” – this is a must. Find opportunities to connect socially (on other networks). For me that includes places like Twitter – I have a private twitter list for my clients. I don’t just connect with them about business related things, I find opportunities to connect over everything and anything else. It’s part of being social. It’s part of being human. It’s plain ol’ connecting just to connect.

    Anyway, great list of tips Aaron!

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  • http://www.semlerresearch.com us fda

    Whatever it is customer service is very important to everyone..

  • http://www.conversationmarketing.com ian

    Flattered I could inspire the post, Aaron. I particularly like #4 – too many businesses forget that. Say ‘thanks’ and you get happier customers every time.

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  • http://blog.marketingxd.com/ Pete Austin @marketingXD

    Fascinating article. Great insight into the mindset of a marketer.

    For a few minutes, address the same issues from the viewpoint of support staff. For example:

    1) Respond to your customers. This is one of the most important things you can actually do, some people are asking you question because they have problems that they need fixed. You’re actually losing customers when you don’t fix their problems.

    2) Reward your customer. You can help your customer by enabling them to get more benefit from their product they bought from you. Give them a free upgrade. Tell them about online documentation and advice forums.

    Do you see where I’m going with this? Some people don’t want “a simple coupon, free meal or free snacks” – they are adults and can use their own money to buy such things from a specialist – they want to get as much benefit as possible from the products they bought from you.

  • http://www.mltcreative.com Billy Mitchell

    Aaron, Thanks for another insightful post. The photo is brilliant too. As great as your list is, it’s at odds with an interesting twist I had yesterday in a client meeting about amping up their social media to engage more with their customers. In this particular instance, they had a unique concern. They are the category leader in their space and as such, their customer list, even individual names, are highly sought after by their competitors. Just having a name isn’t usually a ticket for a competitor to steal your customer, but in their industry, having the name is a very big deal.

    I’m rethinking my advocacy of social media for customer service / relations in this situation. I’d welcome your thoughts and those of your readers. I should add this is a business-to-business marketer and not B2C but I can see where a high-end or very specialized B2C business might have the same concerns. Any ideas or suggestions?

  • http://rocketrider.net Bruce

    Your #11 (Surprise your customers) is extremely effective, and tends to be memorable for your customers.

    Many years ago I worked for a company that was the master of unexpected surprises (they coined it “surprise & delight”) & I still have some of those older customers remind me of some of the “delights” we sprung on them.

    ~Bruce

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  • http://www.brandontwyford.com Brandon Twyford

    I would love to thank and even follow everyone who tweets my blog posts, but at this point that would just be way too time-consuming. Would love to hear other opinions on ways to do that.

  • http://lighthouse-insights.blogspot.com/ Prasant

    Social Media is about humans and the more we try to reach out for human emotions and keep that number game aside, I think businesses can do well. Thanks for the amazing list and the relevant examples added to it @Aaron.

    Keep Rocking,
    Prasant

  • http://lighthouse-insights.blogspot.com/ Prasant

    Julia well said and well done. We can always accept our mistake and show small gestures to customers to make them feel that you are special and we care for you.

  • http://twitsprout.com Dan Holowack

    7) Treat every customer special.
    This one is huge. Before I respond to a tweet I ALWAYS open the user’s bio, read the bio, click on their link and review their recent blog posts.
    Use their FIRST NAME (if you can find it) and something UNIQUE to them. With so many bots out there – this human touch has increasing importance.

    12) Ask your customers for feedback
    This includes happy & frustrated customers. You can learn a lot from both. Don’t be afraid to ask for reviews and testimonials. Your product champions wont mind. Get a recommendation on your business LinkedIn profile or another central location. This can go a long way over time.

    Great post Aaron. Enjoyed the read.
    Cheers! -dan

  • http://www.vidpon.com Gabriela

    This is great. It’s surprising some businesses still do not have social media. It’s really fun and useful too! Thanks for your tweets!

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