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 Most brands offer dreadful customer service on social media. A study from Socialbakers, a social media analytics company, found that response times have actually worsened recently, instead of improving. But a few companies are doing great things with social media, and helping to recast their companies as customer-centric organizations.

In several cases, companies facing crises or PR disasters actually came out looking better after using social media to tackle problems head-on.

In a new report from BI Intelligence, Business Insider's paid research service, we explore how companies are interacting more effectively and serving customers better with a focus on social media, and recreating themselves in the process.

Here are a few examples of great social media customer focus that has created value for companies across industries:

  1. Dell: The computer technology corporation was an early adopter of social customer relationship management and in 2010, Dell opened up its social media command center to all employees, regardless of their function. By 2011, Dell had trained over 25,000 employees of its employees in "social listening." These employees now monitor over 25,000 social mentions of the company daily in 11 different languages. This means insights gleaned from social media are spread throughout the organization rather than being “hoarded,” or remaining undigested in one department.
  2. Domino's: A disastrous YouTube video posted in 2009 showed two Domino’s employees mishandling a pizza. After the video went viral, the company launched a massive campaign to analyze public opinion across all social media. After receiving negative feedback, Domino’s made company-wide changes including altering their pizza recipe, aggressively reaching out to customers on social media, and launching a marketing campaign acknowledging mistakes and promising a better product. Domino’s saw a 14% increase in sales the quarter immediately following the campaign. The stock price took off, and Domino's has never looked back.
  3. Best Buy: The electronics retailer unrolled a Twitter-focused marketing and customer service strategy built around “Twelpforce,” a system the company created to allow thousands of employees across departments to receive and respond to customer queries via Twitter. While Twelpforce has been a hit with customers, it also gave employees a channel and an incentive to collaborate internally and operate outside of silos (in order to handle customer requests it was often necessary to gather information from other employees.)
  4. American Airlines: Socialbakers recently began ranking industries and brands according to “social devotion,” or how attentive they are to customers on Twitter. Surprisingly, troubled American Airlines ranks ninth among all U.S. brands (American has a response rate of 94%). Jan Rezab, CEO of Socialbakers, believes this has to do with a lesson learned from Superstorm Sandy. Finding they had to deal with a system-wide near shutdown, American Airlines turned to social media to manage the crisis. They've remained faithful to social media channels ever since.

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