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DOC-507 The Customer Contact Centre as 'Social Media Relations Centre'

A strategic choice
Over the past few years, there have been many structural changes in the areas of customer services, technical support and even sales development. These changes are due, for the most part, to the fact that new communications media have been overtaken by informed customers and, as a result, the paradigms on interaction between individuals and organizations are shifting.
When an organization chooses to use social media as an additional channel in their customer relations approach, it becomes evident that this decision will involve revising several communications procedures.
It is essential that this initiative be approached with logic so that all efforts deployed ultimately optimize the customer experience provided by the organization, while respecting corporate culture and customer needs.
In this article, we will demonstrate how the Customer Contact Centre (CCC) can, in the short term, become the focal point for centralizing this responsibility. Then, over the next few years, we will witness the transformation of the “Customer Contact Centre”, which will evolve to eventually take on the role of “Social Relations Centre”.
In the current corporate setting, we can observe an overlap of responsibilities between the marketing, public relations and customer services sectors with regard to handling social media communications and interacting with customers.
We believe there are three reasons why this function should be centralized and handled by an organization's Customer Contact Centre.
1. Customer Contact Centre operations generally involve extended business hours, thus ensuring quick turnaround with regard to customer requests. 2. Implementing processes and procedures in line with effectiveness and efficiency lets Customer Contact Centres offer a standard of quality which has already been tested in current interactive approaches.

3. The Customer Contact Centre possesses an extended database of all forms of contacts established with customers on a daily basis, whether by phone, by chat, by email or via any other media. It would seem natural to add this channel to complete the information the centre already detains.We must, however, consider the fact that adding social media to the overall means of communications at the customer's disposal to contact the organization (excluding personal contact) entails distinctive differences in comparison with the traditional media currently being handled by the CCC.
The information contained in this article should provide the Customer Contact Centre Manager with the foundation for managing social media within his own working environment.
In this article, we will tackle three major aspects of launching a support program for social interaction, namely: the development of a social media management program, the recruitment of talent to implement a team of specialists and how to approach technological surveillance and contacts' interactive responses.
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As always, good information, presented well.
Thanks for all your articles. They are always informative.