There’s a reason so many businesses were (and still are) slow to embrace social media: it’s complicated. Creating a Facebook page, launching a Twitter account and pinning a few things on Pinterest is the easy part. Engaging, responding and being present in the social space is the hard part. And a word to the wise: your audience can tell when you’re faking. Most of the time, if you’re not going to put real effort into managing your social relationships, it’s better to do nothing at all. But we’re here to tell you why social relationship management is worth your time and investment.

Okay then, straight to the good stuff. Here’s WSI’s latest infographic on social relationship management (and how you can show your customers you love them):

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At first, social relationship management might seem a bit counter-intuitive. How does sharing accounts and responsibilities humanize social media? But you have to remember, this is a brand we’re talking about, and a brand isn’t a person until you inject it with the humanity of the people who run it. This is exactly the goal of social relationship management. By managing your social profiles as a team from one central, easy-access location, your social media efforts will become more efficient, engaging and human.

 

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A big component of social relationship management is the ability to manage your social profiles – as a team – from one central location. In fact, 54% of companies state a central management location as the main reason they established a social relationship management process. Teams are realizing they are better as the sum of their parts, and their customers think so too. In addition, 30% of marketers blame numerous data sources as the reason for inaccurate customer insights. Centralizing your social media management will give you access to a single, streamlined source of data, which will provide more accurate observations of your audience.

 

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As the momentum behind social media continues to grow, companies are scrambling to bolt on social media management responsibilities to whatever employee is most capable. This results in overworked and under-trained people trying to move the needle in a space that demands more time and energy than they have to give. Social media platforms aren’t just things your business should experiment with, they are channels on which current and potential customers want to communicate with you. A recent study found that 1 in 4 Facebook and Twitter users expect a company to reply to complaints on social media within one hour. If the person who is managing your social media relationships is stretched thin, it’s just not going to happen. This might be happening to your company right now, and the truth is, you may be losing customers!

At the end of the day, social media relationship management will improve your brand’s perception both inside and outside the company. Your team’s buy-in to social media will immediately increase when they are able to share the load and have more fun with strategies and campaigns; and your audience will notice that your engagement and response levels have improved, which will win you new followers. In fact, 30% of brands reported a bost in customer loyalty after establishing a managed social media presence.

 

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All that’s left for you to do is go forth and be social! Seriously, with a little effort and teamwork, you can really show some love to your customers – and then be pleasantly surprised when they return the favour multiple times over!

Here’s our social relationship management infographic in complete form, as well as the embed code for you to use (copy the code):

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About Cheryl Baldwin

Cheryl Baldwin, Director of Marketing Communications at WSI, oversees WSI’s Marketing Department. She’s an integral part of the WSI’s global brand presence and corporate identity.