What makes a good response template?

How to make a useful response template

A template is defined as ‘anything that determines or serves as a pattern; a model’. From a social customer service perspective, a template is a collection of pre-made, thought out responses that can be given to a customer. This makes the job of a social customer support agent easier and reduces the possibility of a mistake.

Using templates is an easy way to streamline your social customer care. A good response template can work wonders for your customer satisfaction but on the other hand, a bad response template will leave customers with a bad impression of your customer service.

So what makes a good response template? We’ve made a list of the most important things to keep in mind while coming up with your next template. Before we go ahead, we need to be clear about the purpose of a template. It is supposed to be used as a guide, and not as a rule book. An ideal response would comprise of the user referring to the template, understanding the customer’s situation and their mood. Blind adherence to a template can spell trouble for a brand.

Without further ado, here is the list.

Grammar and formatting matter.

This may sound very obvious but at times, something so simple can easily be ignored.A template that is going to be used multiple times across all your social media accounts needs to be grammatically correct. People and especially trolls will be more than happy to pick on these and bad mouth your social customer care.

Be in-line with the tone of your brand.

Brands interact with customers on social media use a certain ‘tone’ or type of language. It can be really casual, professional or completely unique. This differs from brand to brand and depends on the pre-decided writing style guide being used by a brand. If your brand has such a style guide already in place, you should ideally refer to it while creating a response template. However, in absence of such a guide, a template can be created in a tone which you feel suits your brand the best. Using a completely different tone in your response templates is not conducive to an overall social media strategy.

Leave room for personalisation.

Templates should be used as a general framework and not just a standard reply which can be simply copied and pasted. A good template should leave room for a little personalisation. Things like adding a customer’s name to the template, signing off after replying, enhance the quality of your reply. These should be taken into consideration while coming up with a template. Most of the best online customer interactions online have one thing in common – the brand representative was successful in understanding the customer’s solution and treated them just as they would have wanted to be treated. Some great examples of such interactions were covered in one of our earlier articles, one of which can be viewed here.

Make your response templates accessible.

Your team may not always work from a set workplace. A customer support agent can still reply to queries while not being present at an office. This is perhaps the reason why almost all social media help desk tools are on the cloud and some even on a mobile app. There shouldn’t be a scenario where they can reply, but they don’t have access to a template to use. Make sure that these templates are accessible at any time and from anywhere. This is perhaps why templates should be saved on online data drives, like Google Drive. Ideally, the social media service tool should give you the ability to save templates on the system itself. Trooya allows you to save response templates for easier access and use.

More options are better.

In this case, variety makes for a better customer experience. The customers that reach out through social media have probably done so before. The same response every time across different interactions undermines the quality of care you provide. Even if you have invested in a team for your social customer support, using the same response template repetitively can make people feel like they’re interacting with a bot instead of an actual human agent.

Hope this helps you come up with great templates and makes your life easier.

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