5 Social Takeaways for Tech Companies
Technology is synonymous with innovation, disruption and all things cutting edge. Still, too many tech companies struggle with modernizing their approach to consumers’ engagement platform of choice: social media.
Your brand’s online presence now plays a major role in consumer decision making. Social is where 24% of users discover brands and products. Not to mention, 86% of consumers buying IT products use social media to help them make purchasing decisions.
So, whether your business is all about cloud computing or selling software is your bread and butter, one thing remains true: Tech companies can’t afford to fall behind on social.
Here are the top five social takeaways for tech companies today, complete with real-world examples.
Technology is supposed to make life easier for your business and your customers. With the right tools and an effective social strategy, companies can simplify business operations while driving success.
By 2022, chatbots are projected to save businesses billions by streamlining customer service and addressing concerns around the clock. Leveraging these bots for the incredible tool that they are removes the burden of time-consuming tasks and allows you to better serve your customers in ways that matter most.
Evernote, a cross-platform app designed for note taking, organizing and archiving, was an early adopter of Sprout Social’s automated chatbot feature. Sprout chatbots were able to automatically guide Evernote customers on Twitter into Direct Message conversations to find out more about their inquiries.
While human-to-human connection is still important for customer relations, chatbots provide instant responses, 24/7 service and almost unlimited interactions simultaneously. These capabilities save businesses manpower and time. For Evernote, this meant that their team saw an 80% increase in people helped on Twitter per week! They also saw an 18% decrease in replies sent per conversation, demonstrating an increase in efficiently resolving customer issues.
With growing adoption and consumer interest, Sprout wanted to make it simple for users to get started. Depending on business and consumer needs, Sprout users can now choose either the customer care, marketing, e-commerce or content discovery templates. The templates are pre-built with best practices in mind so you can decrease time to value with each new chatbot you create.
For potential customers, approaching new technology can be intimidating due to its complexities. Buyers want to make sure they’re making the right recommendation or decision for their business, but the sheer volume of marketing technology available today complicates the evaluation process. Social can help make your business more approachable, build new relationships and inspire customer loyalty.
Data from the Sprout Social Index notes that nearly half of consumers join private communities so they can engage with brands directly. Sprout’s own community Facebook group gives a direct line to its audience. Here, Sprout experts and community members can talk about social media, Sprout features and the industry at-large. As Sprout tracks new members each week, the admins make a point of welcoming, tagging and asking them to share a bit about themselves. That kind of direct engagement is a great way to make your community feel inclusive and approachable.
Not only that, the group presents an opportunity to cross-promote other content, like Sprout’s monthly YouTube Live series that hosts expert speakers in the social media industry. Sprout’s Facebook community page helps generate excitement around each live event and the conversations with members are oftentimes the inspiration behind new topics.
Speaking of live streaming, 80% of customers now say that they’d rather watch a live video than read a company’s blog. By live streaming to channels like YouTube, Instagram, Twitch or Facebook Live, companies create eye-catching content that captures the attention of customers.
Live streams also give your customers and prospects and opportunity to react and ask questions in real-time. This can be an effective approach to product launches. While not every company will generate the same global anticipation that comes from Apple’s famous live product launches, it doesn’t mean they should shy away from live launches. When GoPro and REI launched the HERO4 camera together from REI’s Seattle store, they made it into a Q&A which generated 504 user comments with product and integration questions, accessory recommendations, general excitement and more.
Competition in the tech space is high and customer care is one of the best ways to differentiate your brand from your competition. As we saw already with chatbots, making customer care more efficient is a top priority for businesses.
As a tech company, your customers rely on your products to solve complex technical challenges. If they run into a bug or problem, efficiency in your customer response is critical. The Sprout Smart Inbox is a valuable resource here. It unifies your social channels into a single stream to monitor incoming messages, foster conversations and respond to your audience quickly.
Using Brand Keywords, businesses can separate messages about broader marketing efforts from support-related ones. That categorization enables precise response time and cuts through the noise during times of increased social activity.
In addition to using Sprout’s Smart Inbox to track all received messages, brands often rely on the Sent Messages report to spotlight which responses perform best. Sprout’s Engagement report makes it easy to determine peak hours, informing companies on when increased vigilance is necessary to accommodate customer inquiries.
The whole point of social media is connection. When you connect with just a segment of the 2.9 billion social media users, the impact can be astronomical. The right social strategy and tools help elevate that potential impact.
Cloudera, an enterprise cloud data company, helps some of the world’s largest and most forward-thinking businesses sort out their data engineering, data warehousing, machine learning and analytics needs. Using Optimal Send Times, the company is able to automatically publish social content at the times proven to generate engagement. Powered by Sprout’s patented ViralPost® technology, Optimal Send Times utilizes audience data to detect when social users are most active for engagement opportunities.
The impact of social media influencers is undeniable. According to Business Insider Intelligence, brands are set to spend up to $15 billion on influencer marketing by 2022, so an influencer marketing strategy could be crucial. With social media listening, tech brands can identify influencers in the industry to partner with and make your marketing messages soar.
Adaptability is a must in the tech space. As your business grows and more users begin using your products, there’s a lot of moving parts to keep track of. But with nimble social tools, you can achieve business goals both in and outside the office.
Twilio, a cloud communications platform as a service company, is based in San Francisco but their staff and brand evangelists are spread throughout the world. This broad network required a social solution that allowed them to communicate, collaborate and leverage social during industry events and travel. With Sprout, Twilio team members have and can log into the Sprout dashboard via web, iPhone, iPad or Android apps 24/7/365. The on-the-go mobile access lets their team easily monitor social activity, scheduling content and publishing relevant posts, no matter where they are in the world.
Twilio’s business and team are consistently growing. Spending lots of time training new hires just slows things down. Sprout’s clean design, accessible and intuitive design makes onboarding a breeze. Quick, painless onboarding frees up community managers to focus more time on engaging their audience and delivering exceptional customer experiences for its many users.
No matter what sector your tech company falls under, it’s important to stay on top of industry and consumer trends, and pull those insights into your social strategy. Let the leaders in your space act as guides and inspiration. What are they doing to stand out from the crowd? Where are they investing their social efforts?
Gartner research finds that when B2B buyers are considering a purchase‚ they spend only 17% of that time meeting with potential suppliers and 27% researching independently online. One of the first places that research will lead them is social media. So, tech companies of every stripe can benefit from enhanced social strategy, whether it concerns customer acquisition, product feedback, customer care or something in between.
The key is having the right tool for the job.
Sprout Social is designed to help your business improve every aspect of its social strategy. Our social media management platform has helped numerous technology companies enhance their efforts and boost their bottom lines, including Dropbox, Zendesk, Evernote and more.
Available via web browser, iOS and Android apps, Sprout’s suite of solutions enables organizations of all sizes to extend their reach, amplify their brand and create the kind of real connection with their consumers that drives their businesses forward. Headquartered in Chicago, Sprout operates across major social media networks, including Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, LinkedIn and Google My Business.