More than ever, companies need to bleed every ounce of impact out of their social media.
Social isn’t just about awareness anymore. It’s a tool for customer service and nurturing loyalty. So, you need to leverage other departments to support the end-to-end customer experience.
To stretch social media’s impact in your organization, set up a continuous feedback loop to collect and analyze data from your customers and stakeholders. Then, use this information to inform business decisions and improve your brand’s online presence.
Think about it: Every team in your company is full of experts. Imagine the benefits of using their collective IQ to integrate social strategy and data in all aspects of the business.
A successful social media strategy is rooted in collaboration. Working with customer service, product and other departments on your strategy helps you get the most from your marketing resources. It also helps stay ahead of competitors and create personalized experiences for customers. Let’s walk through how you can practice social media collaboration with teams across your organization to increase your social strategy’s impact.
The benefits of cross-team collaboration
New ideas don’t have to come at the expense of existing initiatives. When everyone is on the same page, it makes it easier for folks to share their unique insights and experiences. This creates room for innovative strategies that can help differentiate your brand experience and align your messaging at every point of the customer journey. It also fosters interest and buy-in for your initiatives across the organization.
On the flip side, your social media data can inform business decisions and improve the customer experience beyond simply boosting brand awareness. Let’s take a more in-depth look at how departments outside of marketing can support implementing a comprehensive social strategy.
Customer support can fix problems before they escalate
Our research from The Sprout Social Index™ 2022 shows that more than three-quarters of consumers expect a response within 24 hours on social media. Depending on your message volume, that demand can be too high for your social team to balance on top of their other duties. Your customer service team is already primed to support. With social media collaboration tools, your social team can use their expertise to address questions or issues about your product or service quickly and accurately.
Your social media data is also a tool for customer support teams to learn how customers think. Valuable insights they make look at include:
- Customer sentiment
- Common issues or complaints that customers experience
- How quickly and effectively the support team responds to customer inquiries
This feedback helps customer support teams make data-driven decisions that improve the customer experience.
Sales can tailor messaging to your target audience
Like customer support, sales teams need to understand customers’ pain points and improve the sales they generate.
Valuable social data for sales teams includes information about:
- Customer preferences and interests
- Common objections or concerns customers have
- How customers interact with the company’s content, products or services
Social data helps sales teams customize sales strategies and messages to address what customers want.
For example, if a group of customers shows interest in a product or feature promoted on social, sales can highlight it in their communication efforts with those interested parties.
Additionally, sales can flag trends bubbling up in their customer conversations to inform niche interests or industry changes your social content should reflect. And equipping your sales team with guidance on their own social presence will boost their social selling efforts.
Product teams can use feedback to improve products
Product teams also need to understand customer needs and preferences.
They’ll be interested in data that shares:
- Customer feedback
- How customers are using the product in their daily lives
- Common issues or problems customers experience with products
Social is a goldmine of unfiltered comments and posts with this type of information. All of which help product teams understand how to improve your brand’s products and services.
Across all departments, audience insights from data-driven social media marketing are crucial to predicting the success of campaigns and product launches. By acting on the insights, you’ll stay competitive in an increasingly crowded market. And you can build a loyal customer base that gives you repeat business.
Identify who’s who in cross-departmental collaboration
There are a lot of benefits to social media collaboration across teams, but where do you start? Which key business stakeholders need insights from your social strategy?
Our research shows customer service and corporate communications teams typically contribute the most to social strategy.
Stakeholders will vary depending on your organizational structure but look at collaborating beyond your marketing team.
Here are a few key stakeholders who can contribute to and benefit from your social strategy and help you stay ahead of the game:
Customer service teams, especially the management team overseeing service level agreements (SLAs) and service agents’ workloads. They can delegate responses to customer questions and feedback on social. They’ll also need reporting to improve their responses to customer issues and complaints.
Sales teams, including sales enablement, will use your insights to understand customer preferences and objections. Then they can tailor their sales strategies and messages accordingly.
Product teams, especially leadership and product leads, will need customer feedback and social data around common issues or requests to improve the product or service. Plus, they’ll inform you of upcoming releases that may require social promotion.
PR teams can monitor sentiment and address potential brand crises.
Executive teams will be interested in how social impacts the company’s performance to help them make data-driven decisions.
It’s clear social data helps each team find customer-centric approaches that further support your brand’s social presence and the company’s long-term goals.
Tips for successful social media collaboration with other teams
Once clear on social’s benefits for each team, you’re ready to build a workflow. Establishing clear processes and communication channels will make cross-departmental social media collaboration seamless. Here’s how:
Establish a point of contact for each team
Appoint someone from each team to lead and be the point of contact for everything social-related. Then, the team representatives can share updates about their departments’ progress with each other.
Set a meeting or collaboration cadence
Decide how often teams should meet and schedule dates in advance. During meetings, allot collaboration time to review progress and discuss challenges. And document each team’s review and share it with the other departments for alignment and visibility.
From my in-house days:
– Train *everyone* on social media (what/why/how) to streamline future requests, support, strategy, etc.
– Have a calendar to align on themes, goals (not necessarily every post)
– Meet regularly for feedback, reporting, wins/losses
– Make it fun (contests)
— Roy Sarkar (@readroy) December 9, 2022
Give stakeholders access to social plans
Waiting for permission to access a doc is a real nail-biter when you’re in a time crunch. Save your teams’ cuticles by sharing docs ahead of time. And include everyone who needs access to social plans and strategies.
Share monthly reports and analytics
Along with access to the social plan, share monthly progress and data recaps with the other teams. Include analytics and insights that help clarify the plan and its effectiveness. Also highlight key takeaways for each team, focusing on the data that matters most to them.
Include social listening feedback
You need to understand your customers’ needs and speak their language when talking about your product or service. Through social listening, you can gather the opinions, experiences and other information they share with their networks about you and your competitors.
Establish a continuous feedback loop around your listeners. Share valuable insights, information and social listening data with teams on a set schedule. Then, they can design empathetic experiences and solutions that make your customers feel heard.
Build a better feedback loop with social media collaboration tools
Since carrier pigeons are outdated, consider using tools to communicate information about your social strategy and collaborate across your organization. They make it easy for everyone to stay up-to-date and work well whether you’re remote or back in the office.
Here are a few tools to add to your tech stack that will streamline your feedback loop:
- Collaboration software: Slack, Microsoft Teams or Asana help teams share information, discuss ideas and collaborate on projects in real time.
- Project management software: Airtable, ClickUp, Notion and Trello help teams manage and organize work, track progress and share updates.
- Cloud-based storage: Google Drive and Dropbox enable people across the organization to access shared content, documents, style guides and the like.
- Social media team collaboration software: Sprout Social offers a range of benefits—like comprehensive reporting and analytics and audience engagement tools—for companies looking to improve their social media strategy across networks.
Also, your client relationship management solution (CRM) can bridge the gap between teams. Since Sprout Social integrates with Salesforce, several teams have visibility into customer activity across channels to track the full customer journey. Plus, customer service can switch with ease between Salesforce and Sprout to handle customer service requests from social.
Use the power of collaboration for social strategy success
When everyone’s on board, success is inevitable. By harnessing collective expertise, teams make smarter decisions and efficiently measure results, boosting your social strategy and its impact on your business.
And using collaboration tools to enable cross-functional interactions will help teams create unified messages and experiences that drive results.
Ready to set up cross-departmental collaboration to achieve social success? Sprout Social has you covered. Deliver social insights org-wide with this template.
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