Twitter rolled out a new feature that will help users better connect with brands in real time. The update, which rolled out last Thursday (September 15, 2016), allows brands and users to clearly display if their account offers immediate customer service support, and at what times they are active.
To support this new initiative, Twitter launched a dashboard – allowing brands to select which features to display on its profile.
When a brand opts in to receive direct messages, a larger, more prominent direct message button will be displayed on its profile in place of the “tweet to” and “message” buttons. This could encourage users to send a negative comment in a private direct message rather than sending a negative public tweet. Twitter also makes this new customer service availability information visible to users when they search for accounts, mention a company, or begin typing a direct message.
In this new social media era, consumers expect instant gratification, which often means an immediate response to their inquiry via social media. If a brand takes too long to respond, or doesn’t respond at all, it can damage customer relationships. This “instant gratification” mentality can be overwhelming for brands and lead to a poor customer service experience if a brand is not equipped to respond in real time. The hope is that this new initiative will alleviate some of the issues marketers face – like lacking the time and resources to consistently monitor channels – by clearly communicating if and when a brand is accessible for customer service inquiries.
WHAT THIS MEANS FOR MARKETERS
With these new features, customer service via Twitter is a more streamlined process. Brands can clear up the murky water and easily let users know if they offer customer support and what times they’re available. By outlining when they actively provide customer service, brands can better plan for monitoring and prioritizing service inquiries. Additionally, if brands opt in, they will no longer rely on followers to exchange direct messages. This Twitter update comes on the heels of previously released customer service features, such as direct message links and Customer Feedback Cards.