How Comms and Customer Service teamed up to talk the social language Gritter?
In the Customer Service Centre… Nearly 10,000 calls received in December 2010, usually a quieter month due to Xmas The highest rate of e-mails sent to the team ever (822) Double the average abandoned rate (almost quadruple that to January or February 2011) We officially hated this Winter.
Meanwhile, over in the Communications Team… Highways-related calls account for 30% of all received
Print media is awash with questions and criticisms “Were the gritters even out last night?...” Lincolnshire Echo reader, 22/11/10 “…I would like to know their grit bin policy… Louth Target letters, 29/10/10 “…with many residents asking if council gritters had been caught on the hop… Spalding Guardian, 01/02/11
So how could this be better-managed and the public better-informed?
The result in the CSC… Within the first month we saw an immediate reduction in calls received and abandoned By the end of the first full season we had seen an average abandoned rate reduction of 33% + a reduction in calls received from the bad winter in 2010/11. 11,000 fewer calls, a 20% reduction. Of course this won’t all be down to Twitter but there’s no doubt it played a large role.
Staff morale increased and staff didn’t start panicking when snow was predicted. Positive comments could be fed immediately into the internet by retweeting. We could put a human face on an invisible service and ensure people knew we were out there doing what they often said we weren’t…
Thanks for all you do gritting our icy roads, I’ve arrived safe & sound, thanks guys! Stay safe out there on the roads, gritting teams. Shout-out to the LincolnshireCC Twitter team, v helpful, they GET Twitter! You know me so well! Thanks for looking into it for me. January 2013 140 positive comments of thanks and praise (and 26 negatives - to respond to and discuss live)
Plus…. CREATIVITY! What other job allows you to send pictures of AT-ATs from Star Wars from a Corporate feed in an attempt to gain a positive response from people usually angry with a perceived lack of service?
@LincolnshireCC: “Our cameras show Lincs drivers today must beware black ice, frozen snow and an Imperial assault on the rebel base." 497 Re-tweets… worldwide. Mentions in print media Loads of new followers
According to an NM Incite report, nearly three-quarters of customers would recommend a brand that gives them a ‘quick and effective’ response on social media. Given this massive pay-off, brands are clamouring to get their social customer care in order – a Mashable post revealed that 80% of companies plan to use social media for customer service.NM Incite report80% of companies plan to use social media for customer service The two big upsides to this approach are that conversations (and complaints) are away from public channels, and queries can be grouped by subject, making it much easier for a customer service rep to address them in one go.