Big Banks aren’t ‘getting’ Twitter Customer Support

Written by on January 16, 2012


A new report from Javelin has come to the conclusion that Twitter is proving to be quite an annoying customer service tool for big banks. The study says that customers love the platform and are more at home on Social Media than anywhere else, but banks are struggling with it.

Examining nearly 5500 tweets sent by banks in reply to customers who’d contacted them on Twitter, Javelin analyzed how many of the issues were resolved then & there, and how many had been diverted to a traditional channel, like email or a call center. This is seemingly a good way to analyze customer-business interaction on the social domain.

The research found that none of the big banks did an exceptionally good job of resolving complaints on Twitter. Citigroup was the best of the lot, resolving 36 percent of its Twitter based complaints; Wells Fargo, 11 percent; and Bank of America, 3 percent. Sure, the complaints could have been noted here and resolved elsewhere, but only the ones that were addressed on the platform the customers desired i.e, Twitter itself, fit the bill.

Bank of America and Wells Fargo actually answered with scripted replies that did not appease customers much, sending the signal that Twitter was only a workaround to get to the other communication channels.

The report goes on to say that when possible, the banks should answer questions directly on Twitter. But customers must also be educated about the security issues online, so they will need to switch to a private, direct message, or perhaps to another mode of communication, like a customer support representative, if account information or other such sensitive data is needed.

The study and the results reaffirm Freshdesk’s siding with social support. Banks should already be making efforts to avoid forcing the customer to explain the problem all over again. Twitter should be a tool to save the customer’s time, to aid his convenience, and not as yet another step to conventional customer service.

At such a point in the support landscape, businesses should choose a helpdesk that has all the features of a normal web based ticketing system, easy to use and feature rich, but which should also have social support as well. There are social customer service tools available for this, and organizations should choose the helpdesk that gives them the perfect blend of all these requisites.

With multiple platforms coming along, including Facebook and Google+, this phenomenon will definitely be on the rise. Brands will have increasing engagement on social platforms and more and more organizations will be found wanting when customers reach out to them.

We’ve talked about this same point extensively earlier on our blog, and made the case for solving the customer issue on the platform where he contacts the business. For further reading on Twitter strategies, here’s ‘8 tips on how to use Twitter for Business’.

You can get the complete report here.

Image courtesy

Subscribe for blog updates

  • caithriellesam

    Although social media such as twitter has really become a convenient trend to use, I don’t think issues pertaining to finance or money should be resolve through twitter because there is exposure and big chance and hacker are out there waiting to strike through the situation if given a chance.