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In previous posts we've talked about how important a quick response is when providing social customer care. However, this can be a daunting task when you're working with a small team or even a single individual who is responsible for providing social customer care.

Luckily for you I've been in a situation where I was the sole point of contact for first touch social care for multiple channels that got a lot of attention from customers who were looking for some love from customer care. Here's how I was able to lower my first touch grade of service down to 1 - 2 hours during business hours without calling in backup.


Digging Into the Data


Heads up: You probably don't have the required tracking in place to get this data in the same way we did. However, you can still use my times as a starting point, and refine by either adding or subtracting a sweep from your daily routine, or moving the timed sweeps around to better fit when people are posting support issues on your social channels.

We started by digging into the data we had for when people who were looking for help with a problem visited our client's largest and most active social channel, Facebook. This information isn't provided by Facebook Insights, but we were able to get this data from our custom tool, which had months worth of data about when support issues were posted, how long it took for a first touch solution or escalation, and how quickly escalations from first touch responses were followed up on by the customer care team.

From there it was easy to create a quick Excel graph showing which times, on average, people posted support issues on Facebook.


Planning Timed Sweeps


Using the graph, we identified 4 different times of day where if I did a sweep of the posts to page and comments on our page posts at that time, I would come in right behind most of the support posts each day. This would, on average, bring first touch grade of service down to 1 hour. In practice we found that it usually brought it down to about 2 hours (still a vast improvement) and that adding an extra sweep in the early afternoon helped bring it back down to 1 hour more often.


No Data? Here's Where to Start


If you don't have the same tracking in place that we did, you're not going to be able to do this as easily, but you won't be completely left out either. The times we identified were 9AM (beginning of the day), 12PM, 2PM, 3PM, and 5PM (end of the day) EST. If your social channels get less traffic, then this may be over-kill for you. It's also likely that the ideal times for your channels will be a bit different from these.

Nothing beats being able to base your decisions on data that applies directly to your social channels, but if you do a daily sweep of your social channels at these times to find and respond to support issues, chances are you will significantly reduce the amount of time that people are currently waiting for first touch support responses from you on your social channels.

If you notice that a lot of people are still waiting more than an hour for responses during business hours, then you can try moving the times around or adding more sweeps to see if you can improve your first touch grade of service.


Bonus Tip

If you have a small team handling your first touch social customer care, then chances are they also have other responsibilities like community management, planning, reporting, supporting other team members, etc.

How do you make sure that you don't miss these times and end up checking your social channels late or missing an entire sweep on a day that you're super busy and easily distracted by other tasks?

Get an app like Due that will remind you of recurring tasks with an annoying helpful little chirp until you've checked them off. I created a recurring event to happen on weekdays in Due for every single escalation pass that I needed to do each day. As it became time to do each sweep, Due would remind me until I checked off that I had finished the sweep.

This way, if my day was consumed by some other task, I would never have to worry about forgetting to make a sweep for support issues. 

Post by Zachary Chastain
May 7, 2015