Turning to social media to get customer service - New York News

Turning to social media to get customer service

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Getting a real live customer service representative on the phone can be frustrating. That's why so many people are turning to social media to get help. And the companies are responding.

Amy Srour recently tried to get in touch with Raymour and Flanigan because of an issue with her couch. But when she couldn't get a satisfactory response by phone she went online to the company's Facebook page.

"Once I made a whole paragraph on Facebook they contacted me right away and said to come into the store and pick out any couch," she said.

Ericka Moore told us a similar story about how she turned to Twitter for help with her cellphone bill.

"They actually tweeted me back and called me right away so I thought that was pretty cool," Erica said.

Cell phone companies, retailers, airlines and more are all bulking up their social customer service, at times responding within minutes with apologies and offers to help resolve issues.

"I'm one of the front end people who respond online," said Offir Gutelzon of keepy.me. He is an entrepreneur who recently founded keepy.me, a children's artwork sharing app. Even for a small start-up social customer service is essential, he said.

"The immediate response is nothing like it was before," he said. "Press 1, press 3 -- now it's like 140 characters and you can get to customer support."

But just like with the old school customer service, there are frustrations online too. In fact, a study by Canadian researcher Insight West found 70 percent of respondents say no action was taken after they complained to a company on social media.

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