Young Adults More Likely to Knock Companies On Social Media

In the face of bad customer service, most of us have probably at least contemplated going online to complain about it on social media (I, for one, think about it every time I fly -- hello, holiday travel!). New research from NewVoiceMedia, which specializes in providing outsourced cloud customer contact centers, suggests that this trend is only going to continue.

Overall 89% of U.S. consumers surveyed said they have switch businesses at least once in the past year due to poor customer service, including “lack of appreciation” (53%), unhelpful or rude contact center staff (42%), being passed around to multiple agents (32%), unknowledgeable agents (29%), and that perennial favorite, being kept on hold (25%).

But consumers aren’t satisfied with just taking their business elsewhere: after receiving poor customer service, half of the survey respondents said they would tell friends and colleagues not to use the business, and 18% said they would go online to share their undying hatred, and 16% would vent on social media. What’s more, the number who would go online or take to social media jumps to 59% among consumers ages 25-34 -- which would certainly seem to indicate this behavior is on the upswing.

Telephone is still the favored customer service channel for 59% of U.S. consumers, compared to 19% for email and just 13% for social media. Here again, however, NewVoiceMedia found 27% of Gen Y-ers favored social media for customer service, again suggesting this trend will grow over time.

Other studies have found somewhat higher numbers for the proportion of Americans who favor social media for customer service. In January of this year I wrote about a study from NM Incite that found 47% of U.S. consumers have engaged with customer service via social media, with 28% saying they prefer customer service via social media versus the phone.

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