Just think about this: When a Consumer chooses to purchase an item or service they go through several steps. To explain I’ll tell you a short story.
Sally knew her mother in law was coming in town and just had to mop her new hardwood floors. She just got brand new wood flooring and she doesn’t want to damage them by using the old harsh mop she’d had for years. So, she pulls out her phone and googles Hard Wood Floor Cleaners and finds 12 options. One of them has a Facebook page that she visits. When she opens it she finds that not only are there great photographs of the product which shows her that the steamer mop works on hardwood floors but it also has a section for commenters. In there she finds a whole list of testimonials from previous Customers where she learns that the mop is a fantastic product and will work out perfectly on her new floors. What she doesn’t notice though is that there are very few responses to the consumer comments on the page. She writes it off and goes to the store to buy the steamer. After getting it home she quickly learns that the plastic latch that keeps the water container in place is broken and the steamer doesn’t work properly. She goes to the Social Media page and creates a post warning others about the product. Now here’s where it really matters—What happens next?
One of two things can happen:
- The company completely misses it because they don’t value their social media. They don’t monitor their social media comments. This slight can come across as a company not valuing their customer’s thoughts, remarks and opinion of their product or service.
- The Company has a dedicated Social Media person and is on the ball right away with a response. “Sally, we’re sorry to learn that your Steam Mop isn’t working out. Please contact us at (800) 000-0000. We would love to resolve this and get a new mop out to you right away!” This shows the Consumer immediately that they are a valued Customer and the Company believes in their product.
Social Media is the new Customer Service in the Digital Age. If for no other reason, this is why it matters. Now you might be wondering how this example will apply to a Freelancer. While taking into account that this is a larger company, they have resources to manage this sort of backlash. Sure, one complaint could theoretically butterfly out of control but it’s still only a small blemish unless it is repeated consistently among their thousands of Customers.
However, for a Freelancer this could be a make it or break it moment. All potential clients will see this post and how the Freelancer responds. Even more importantly, the speed at which the Freelancer responds to a customer is important too. As a Freelancer, you want to be reachable but not too reachable. If you wait too long, then you can’t be bothered. But if you are too quick then you might be perceived as too desperate. The trick is to find the right balance and to be confident and courteous in your response.