Accounting Who Has a Facebook Page

customer service person on your social media - This guy is the most dangerous of them all but can also be a kind ally. He might not be from accounting. He might be from management, or work in the shipping department, or even worse be the son of the boss.

Whoever he is, you have to accept that people hear the word Facebook, Twitter, or even simply Web and assume that, well, “Hey, they have a Twitter account! They can help!” Yes and no.
The fact is that employees who aren’t specifically a part of your social media plan can be a tremendous ally, but they also can sink your project faster than the Titanic. If they happen to know a lot, by all means, recruit them into your team.

You’ll be a kind, benevolent boss who brings in someone who knows something the others don’t. This person can be helpful, if you allow it.

This person can also wind up being an evangelist for your company in ways you’ve never thought of. But again, this is only going to happen if he’s good, and only if he’s willing to work with the team.

On the flipside, you want to make sure if he truly can’t be ignored that you give him busy-work to not get in your way. If this person feels involved, you can utilize his skills and get rid of some of the annoying busy-work that hits every once in a while.

For example, you could ask him to research various Facebook groups and so on stuff that needs to be done but might keep slipping off your radar. Keep in mind, however, that when these “walk-ins” come in, you should treat them with an open mind and listen to them.

Some of your most loyal company evangelists might be the kid with the blog who never thought he could help until he shows up with Wordpress theme after Wordpress theme. All of a sudden, he’s one of your most valuable assets. Remember these people.

The Flip Side: Meet Your Audience
Now that you know what your social media team should look like, you need to know what your audience is likely to look like. As we know, this is just a rough guideline. You’re going to meet many more people in your day-to-day world navigating the social media landscape. But this should be a good start. If nothing else, it gives you something to look for.

The One-time Complainer
Chances are, the people you’re going to meet most often are those who have somehow been “wronged” by your company, an employee, or a product. This will usually occur via one of two three ways: via Facebook, a blog, or Twitter. If you’re smart and have your Google Alerts set up, you’ll be notified if the complainer pops up anywhere else first. (We’ll get to those later in the book.)

You’ll want to make sure you notice the-one-time-complainer immediately, using the tools at your disposal. If you’re smart, a customer service person on your social media team will notice and can engage the complainer almost instantly, fixing whatever problem exists immediately, and hopefully on the first try. @comcastcares ( is a Twitter account set up by Comcast Cable.

When someone tweets about her cable being out or some other cable issue, Comcast can immediately reach out through Twitter, usually cutting through hours of customer service calls and red tape.

The one-time-complainer can actually be very helpful. If you can fix her problem immediately, you not only turn an angry customer into a happy customer, but you can also notice any trends that might be brewing. Say, perhaps a section of your market has suddenly lost power or a timing circuit blew in one of your games. Having one of your customer service people monitoring the chatter, as it were, can be tremendously beneficial for you.

The Constant Complainer
Strangely, the constant complainer isn’t that big of a threat to you. Think about that cousin we all have, the one who is always complaining about something. His job sucks. He can’t find a girlfriend. He hates his apartment. What happens after a while? You stop listening to him. You brush off his complaints with a roll of your eyes after all, you’ve heard it all before and you don’t take him seriously anymore.

The same thing happens with the constant complainers. In the end, no one takes them seriously. Of course, you should try to solve his problem. But remember that the constant complainer isn’t as important as the one-time-complainer because most likely, no one listens to the constant complainer that closely anymore, anyway.

The Axe-to-Grind
So what creates an axe grinder? Perhaps something happened with this person that went beyond the simple “I’m not pleased.” Perhaps she feels that your initial response wasn’t “big” enough. Maybe she happens to be an attorney.

Whatever the case, the axe-to-grind complainer can cause you a world of hurt. If these complainers have the time, the inclination, and the computer, they can start Facebook groups, buy domain names, call the local media, whatever they feel like. The axe-togrind complainer should be dealt with the same as you would the one-time complainer.

The Happy Customer
Every once in a while, your social media team will smile, for they’ve noticed something like this: “Had a problem with my car, called dealership, they fixed it in 20  minutes! Harry’s Honda ROCKS!”Yes, we love those. You can use these people. Engage them in conversation. Offer them a coupon or a thank-you discount. Ask if you can use them as a testimonial. Turn a fan into a raving fan. And enjoy it.

The Prima Donna
A prima donna is a customer who feels that he has a big enough following in social media to use it to bully your nascent social media team into giving him what he wants, which is usually disproportionate to the actual or even perceived “hurt” your company caused him.

This is where your mixed discipline team really comes into its own. PR folks are used to handling journalists who act like divas. Customer service people are experienced with the “I want to talk to your manager now” types. With these skill sets combined, your team becomes more than a match for this type of audience member.

End result
I always think of dealing with groups, whether customers, clients, or employees, as taking a morning subway commute. You’re going to get the nice smiling guy, then the idiot on her iPhone who won’t get out of your way. You’ll have the person who is always willing to let you look at his newspaper, then the moron who’s eating a really, really smelly sandwich.
Your job is to remain calm and most of all, fluid—know that you’re going to encounter these people all the time. Find a way to not only deal with them, but to extract the best out of all of them—no matter how bad or great they are. You never know, the multi-complainer (or iPhone girl) might become your best ally when you least expect it.

At the end of the day, though, without customers, clients, and employees, you’ve got nothing. If you’re truly passionate about increasing the awesomeness of your customer service, your job is to identify, understand, and work with each type of customer, client, and employee—the best way possible.
That makes for an awesomely solid foundation.


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