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25 Must-Answer Questions for Succeeding with Social Customer Care

Brian Cantor

Join our free, VIRTUAL 4th Social Media for Customer Management Summit and learn how to answer these questions the right way.

Make no mistake – virtually no one has "figured out" social media for customer service. Success in its truest, most desirable form remains elusive for many organizations, due in no small part to the fact that many organizations do not even know how to define success.

But even though the aforementioned is painfully true for the majority of customer-facing businesses, it does not mean customer management leadership has not made tremendous progress in clarifying the rules of engagement for social media. Businesses are indeed beginning to see real value in social customer care, and more importantly, they are truly beginning to flesh out how to use social to maximize customer relationships. They are starting to "get" what it means to add a social layer to the contact center.

As the 7thAnnual Call Centre Week Canada is not simply a lecture program but one that creates true connections between customer care professionals on issues of strategy and benchmarking, interactive discussion remains a core focus. And one highlight of that format was the discussion on aligning people, process and technology to achieve success with social media.

Featured are twenty five questions that the VP-level attendees identified as imperative considerations for all social customer care efforts. Note that these do not necessarily take into account the specific, tactical questions associated with social strategy--they just get at the business and organizational issues that must be addressed:


  1. What is the key objective(s) driving our social customer care strategy?
  2. What do our customers hope to gain from social interactions?
  3. How are we defining success?
  4. How are we measuring that success?
  5. How ready is your existing call center workforce for accommodating a marketing function into the communication mix?
  6. How will you change your hiring processes—throughout the entire organization—to best screen for talent on social customer care?
  7. What will we do to provide a relevant knowledgebase/information resource for agents?
  8. Do we have the necessary resources/budget?
  9. To what extent will we outsource some of our social media functions?
  10. What is our goal/expectation when it comes to cultivating customer "followers" (and our level of engagement with those "followers")?
  11. What type of relationship does our leadership and the organization at large aspire to create with the employees that represent us on social?
  12. What should the social "template" (aesthetics of our social network presences) look like?
  13. What social "brand" or "personality" will we try to project?
  14. On which networks will we participate in the short-term/long-term?
  15. What kind of internal governance is needed for our social strategy?
  16. How will we manage the quality assurance aspect of social media – what is our checks and balances system?
  17. What kind of external oversight/regulations/concerns apply to our social media strategy and user data collection?
  18. What kind of security measures will we implement?
  19. How will customer inquiries and issues escalate throughout the organization?
  20. What is the target response time/manner/mechanism for social inquiries?
  21. What technology will we use for monitoring and responding to customers?
  22. Do we have what we need to manage that technology?
  23. How will our social strategy integrate with our existing mode of operation?
  24. Who will be our strategic partners on social customer care?
  25. How will we use feedback/data from our social interactions to improve customer-centricity and the business at large?