In 2014, during the Victorian bushfire season, I found myself following safety advice from an emergency service Tweet.
As I drove my family to safety, I watched plumes of black smoke obscure the horizon in the rear-view mirror. That one message was all I needed to make a decision that kept my family safe.
It might seem an extreme reaction to a simple social media post, but it was a decision that many Victorians made that bushfire season.
With the high level of engagement with social media, many organisations are leveraging new technology to enhance their services and support, while ensuring they are transparent, accountable and abide by the law when interacting with the public online.
It was that simple Tweet that set me on the path to creating my business Brolly, a social media risk-management and archiving service.
Part of transforming your service delivery through technology means integrating new communication channels – they help save costs when advertising and provide ready-made support portals.
Recording emails and phone calls are business as usual processes for most customer service centres and capturing records of every customer interaction is often required for future reference.
To the uninitiated it might sound unnecessary, but having records of these interactions meets legal obligations and provides transparency when dealing with Freedom of Information and consumer affairs requests.
So how does this relate to social media?
Social media is now the fastest, easiest way to connect with the public so how your service portrays itself online is crucial to its success.
And public perception is paramount. The 2017 Sensis Social Media Report found that 64% of Australians were more likely to trust brands that had positive social media interactions with customers.
If your organisation is communicating with the public, you need to consider how you are monitoring, capturing and managing your social media engagements. If you don’t have a superior social media record management tool, your business is exposed to risk.
Without an accurate and complete record, social media content can be deleted or misconstrued, and can have serious real-world ramifications for your brand. We’ve seen this happen across social media with backlash from campaigns run by major brands such as Pepsi and Nivea.
I founded Brolly after following the safety advice from a Tweet during the Victorian bushfire season. The result of that Tweet was more than driving my family to safety, it exemplifies the reach and importance of social content in real-life situations.
While your brand’s social media content might not include safety alerts, it may provide advice, support or resolve customer queries through social media, and this requires having reporting and business processes in place. Many organisations are also required by law to keep records of their business communication with clients and consumers.
With social media content now being accepted in courts as legal evidence, we can’t underestimate the importance of this engagement and the risks we face if we have no records to refer to.
The way many organisations currently manage social media exposes some serious gaps in the checks and balances that are required for all other service delivery channels.
Since Brolly’s launch we continue to educate organisations about the risks they face by not managing their social media records. Having a tool that captures social media engagement provides the freedom to connect more meaningfully with customers, it’s your safety net.
By ensuring transparency and accountability across all service delivery channels we move toward a future where dynamic engagement is embraced across industries, and empowers consumers and businesses.
Find out more about future-proofing and risk management here.