Creating a customer service plan for your social media channels can be daunting. Many brands haven’t done it: 71% have not yet migrated their customer service offerings to their social channels.
It’s a huge missed opportunity. And when brands come to us with the goal of getting started on social media customer service, they often want to know: What are some examples of companies that do it well?
First, an overview. The companies with the best social customer service check a few boxes. These brands are:
Below are a few companies that can serve as a guide for your own customer service social media plan.
From a customer service standpoint, the feminine hygiene company Thinx has one of the most approachable Instagram accounts around. At the top of its profile, Thinx has a carousel of pinned Stories that provide shoppers with information about the ingredients in its products and the options available for plus-size buyers.
Thinx is also responsive to all types of post-sale customer inquiries, including those that involve questions about the upkeep of a Thinx product after purchase. These questions about wear-and-tear are a core—but often overlooked—part of customer service. After all, your job as a brand doesn’t end when the product lands on your customer’s doorstep.
To build a lasting relationship with a customer, you should be ready to answer their inquiries about the duration of a product, how to wash it, and so on.
Twitter is not the most natural sales platform, but the skincare brand Topicals has mastered how to use Twitter to engage its customers in an authentic way. Topicals answers all of its tweets with a sense of humor, whether that means thanking customers who have been with the brand since the beginning or fielding complaints about products.
Even when customers do make comments that could be read as negative, Topicals replies to them with a sense of wit. Certainly, this can be a risky move for a larger brand, but Topicals knows its dedicated audience well, so it’s able to bring personality into its customer service.
Take, for instance, this response to customers who say that Topicals products have a strong smell before they are applied:
The Gen-Z-friendly temporary tattoo brand excels at TikTok. It has amassed around half a million followers on the app, and it is often flooded with comments asking about its products. The most common question: how long do these tattoos ask?
Inkbox doesn’t respond to every single comment it receives, but it does prioritize both pre- and post-sale messages. The brand understands that because its audience is on TikTok, its fans are going to turn to that platform to ask product-related questions. Responsiveness to customer inquiries on the platform where you are most popular is integral to leaving customers with a positive image of your brand.
The swimwear company Andie fields dozens of comments every day on Instagram, where it has a popular online presence. The company strives to be highly responsive.
When a shopper complains about their order in the public comments, Andie works quickly to move the conversation to DM, so Andie can offer speedy, personalized care tailored to the specific experience of that customer.
Darn Tough Vermont makes wool socks with a long-lasting guarantee, so many of its comments and DMs involve what happens after a purchase. How long should the socks last, how they should be kept up, and what happens if they wear out too soon?
Darn Tough Vermont does a great job fielding these inquiries in part because it makes a point of empathizing with customers. When someone asks a question, the company tells them that they aren’t the only ones to have wondered this.
Take, for instance, the interaction below, where a customer asks what the “L” on the inside of the socks means. The customer assumed it meant “Left,” but was confused why there was no corresponding “R” sock. Darn Tough Vermont made sure to respond warmly:
Outlaw Soaps, a homemade soap brand from Nevada, has a huge audience on Facebook. 100k+ people follow its main Facebook page, and the company regularly hosts livestreams and posts memes to engage with its audience.
On Facebook, Outlaw makes itself highly accessible to anyone with a customer service issue. Its page announces that it is “Very Responsive” to messages, signaling in advance to shoppers that Outlaw will reply quickly.
The comments on Outlaw’s Facebook page highlight just how many sectors customer service can cover. Brands are used to fielding comments about orders that never arrived. But Outlaw also regularly answers customers who are having issues with its loyalty program.
Customers enrolled in the loyalty program are its most meaningful shoppers, and the company responds quickly to ensure these buyers know how to navigate its rewards system. They are the most important people to please.
Even massively popular brands take the time to respond individually to customer service questions on social media. They know how critical those relationships are. The blender maker BlendJet, for instance, might have over a quarter of a million likes on Facebook, but it still monitors the comments for customer inquiries.
A great example of a recent BlendJet interaction revolved around the blender’s charging port. A customer was worried about accidentally getting the charging port wet. BlendJet noted that its charging ports are actually waterproof, though it doesn’t recommend full water submersion. This helped the specific customer, as well as anyone else reading the comments section who might have a similar question.
Not only does BlendJet satisfy the individual customer, but it might also get a public endorsement out of it. Comments like this only make future customers that much more eager to purchase:
Alleyoop is a makeup brand that first rose to prominence on Instagram. Now, its 70k+ followers take to the comments and DMs to deluge Alleyoop with pre- and post-sale questions. The brand makes sure almost no comment goes unaddressed.
Here is Alleyoop addressing a typical customer problem—a product that breaks soon after arrival. The company is quick to apologize, request a DM, and promise a replacement. That not only resolves this particular customer’s problem, but it also underscores for any shoppers who are on the fence that Alleyoop is responsive and generous.
The public nature of this interaction was an opportunity for Alleyoop to prove to other shoppers that it didn’t tolerate broken products—and it succeeded.
Remember, your followers will use your public responses as a measure of your brand. If you come off poorly in your public comments, you might be judged accordingly.
Finding the time to answer all of these comments and DMs can be a challenge, of course. Most brands are usually too busy crafting marketing plans and developing new products. That’s why they should consider a solution like Chatdesk, which provides brand experts who can respond to customer comments and DMs across TikTok, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and more on your behalf.
Chatdesk has flexible pricing plans that vary depending on your level of need, so you won’t be locked into a long-term contract.