Social media has given people an opportunity to share their opinions with a wide audience, but how is it impacting the way companies do business?

To take a look at how social media is changing the way brands interact with customers, SproutSocial conducted a survey called “Call-Out Culture: People, Brands and the Social Media Power Struggle.” It focused on statistics from 289,000 social media profiles in the third quarter of 2017.

The data suggests that four-out-of-five consumers now believe social media has increased accountability for businesses. Approximately 55 percent of customers choose to call out brands on platforms, such as Twitter and Facebook, in order to get a response or resolve an issue.

“It’s important to point out that social media call-outs are not limited to those that attract national media attention like the recent high-profile examples in the airline industry,” wrote the researchers in their findings. “While we may only see a handful of these larger, more egregious brand crises each year, smaller scale call-outs are becoming a regular online occurrence.”

It’s also worth noting that customers react strongly against companies that respond poorly to them on social media. The majority (50 percent) claim that they boycott brands that do not respond to their satisfaction on social platforms. On the flip side, most customers (45 percent) stated that they typically craft a positive post on social media when a company responds appropriately.

Could this be the difference between a tarnished reputation and a booming business? It isn’t the only factor, but it’s important to recognise social networks as separate channels of communication. As buyers seek satisfactory customer service, it’s becoming more routine for them to turn to websites, like Facebook and Twitter. Companies that are mindful of these platforms can use them to their benefit as they look to provide a memorable customer experience.

If you have some time on your hands I recommend watching this video — some great insights into social media and fantastic tips.

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