Top 10 Essential Social Media Tool Features for Telecom Brands

By: Sofie De Beule

January 16, 2015

Telecom brands have courageously taken on the challenge of tackling the social customer service side of their business and are willing to invest in a long-term, profitable social customer service strategy with the help of a state of the art tool.

Many telecom brands have started the hunt for a tool that can help them to achieve their goals. Brands usually have an extensive list of requirements but encounter difficulties finding their way through the maze of endless opportunities, tool features, and requirements in an ever-changing social media landscape.

What are the essential, must-have features any telecom brand should look out for in a tool to help them achieve instant success?

Here’s a list of the top 10 features:

1. User Friendly Interface

Social customer service agents come and go and so do your customers. In any case, it’s important employees are able to start working rather quickly without extensive, week-long training.

It sounds rather obvious that a tool needs to be efficient, but many brands seem to underestimate this aspect. At the end of the day, brands need to make money. Keep your eyes open for a tool that makes user friendliness a number one priority. After all, social customer service is complex enough as it is, so why would you make it even more complex?

2. Advanced Keyword Search

Complaints that slip through the cracks and don’t get a proper action will cause telecom brands to quickly loose customers. Unlike any other industry, customers will easily flock to competitors if they feel uncared for and your service doesn’t live up to their expectations.

This is why telecom brands need to make sure they are pulling in EVERY mention about their brand. That means not only people who ‘@ mention’ telecom brands, but also those who simply talk about the brand are key opportunities to track. Every conversation opens doors to turn a rather negative experience into a positive one. Advanced keyword search possibilities are essential to gain access to all of this data without drowning in the social media noise.

3. Customizable Inboxes

Custom designed inboxes tailored to the needs of brands are incredibly important to easily divide and delegate the workload.

With customizable inboxes, brands can truly take matters into their own hands by outlining their own, unique way of working within a tool. The goal of a custom mailbox is to work on multiple mentions with multiple agents at the same time. This doesn’t mean you’re risking double-work: you’re simply sifting through your data and dividing the workload to make sure each question gets a proper action.

You can, for example, create a mailbox that only lets you look at people mentioning your brand. By creating a separate folder in which you filter for ‘questions’ or ‘complaints,’ you will be able to immediately filter out those mentions that need an immediate, quick answer. Don’t keep your customers waiting. Timing is everything!

4. Approval Workflow

Sometimes, replying to people’s complaints can cause more harm than good. Especially when dealing with demanding, hot-headed customers, it’s important to properly handle the situation and keep calm. So, what if agents aren’t sure if their response is appropriate?

That’s where approval workflows come in handy! They allow you to send each mention, in most cases, to your superior and make sure every reply you send out is customer proof.

5. Built-In Chat Function

Large companies, like in the telecom industry, are noticing the need to collaborate and talk with people from the entire company. No need to make this a big hassle. Simply switching on the built-in chat function in your tool will enable you to start conversations with anyone on your team. It’s important social media is a team effort, so let everyone step in and help each other out. To smooth out this process, a built-in chat function will rescue you from poor communication and demotivated team members.

6. Team Performance Metrics

Relevant, straightforward, and easy-to-grasp team performance metrics are what every social media team leader needs! Social media can be a tough nut to crack. Especially in the case of the telecom industry where active customer service teams and stress are commonplace. In this case, managers have to make sure there’s a smooth cooperation and workflow. That’s why continuous assessment, powered by the right team performance metrics, is the backbone of each successful social media team.

Good to know: turn performance assessments into something fun. Empower your employees to become a SUPER agent and introduce a level gamification. If employees are able to meet certain targets (e.g. reduce your own, personal response time by 5 minutes in a month’s time), you can honor their hard work through your own, unique rewards program.

7. Case Management & Commentary

In the telecom industry, social media teams usually have several, stand-alone interactions with a single customer. That’s why it’s important to provide context to a conversation, and include historical information about previous conversations. Make the picture of each individual customer complete, and identify easily with any struggles they might have. With each new interaction, every social media team member will be able to quickly take over the situation without asking unnecessary questions.

8. Automatic Tagging, Workflow & Alerts

Telecom brands usually have a lot of messages coming in from specific groups of people: influencers, journalists, customers, etc. To be able to easily sift through your data and organize your mentions, add automatic tags to them to instantly provide context to a conversation. That way you can, for example, filter journalists into a specific folder to ensure they get a quick response.

In most cases, telecom brands also have strict SLA’s to make ensure their level of customer service is up to standards. By setting these alerts, you can notify your social media team members when there are mentions in your social media inbox older than, let’s say 30 minutes. Unlike any other industry, timely replies are key in the telecom business. As they operate in a very competitive environment, other offers are just one click away. Furthermore, by assigning mentions to people, you can organize and further develop your workflow which will keep your response time low.

9. User Roles & Employee Permissions

Companies usually operate with quite a number of people in just one tool. Restricting the responsibilities of each person working in your social media tool gives telecom brands the reassurance they are looking for by maintaining a strong level of control over their social media presence. User roles allow individual social media members to only see the data that is relevant to particular employees.

10. Response Template Database

Customers usually ask a lot of similar questions. To be able to respond to these questions with just one click, a response template database allows you to give an appropriate reply within minutes. It’s important, however, to remember to not become too rigid when using response templates. No one wants to talk to a robot, so be sure to maintain a human aspect.