How H&R Block Uses Social Media to Enhance Customer Relations

social media expert interviewIn this video I interview Jennifer Love, Senior Vice President of Communications at H&R Block. Jennifer shares how H&R Block adapts conversations across all channels to create customer experiences which bring in tons of referrals.

You’ll hear how she adapts her social media tactics to get the most value out of the 120-day tax season and why she strives to pull in questions and how she answers them in a challenging real-time environment.

Be sure to check out the takeaways below after you watch the video.

Here are some of the things you’ll learn about H&R Block’s social media communication plan in this video:

  • Why it’s important to engage with customers on their channel of choice
  • How to use different tactics on Facebook, Twitter and on your blog
  • How to share tips and helpful content as related to their customers needs in the tax cycle
  • How to create a one-on-one environment by assigning one pro for each person and monitoring results
  • How to invite people to go off the grid to find solutions one-on-one (6 out of 10 of these people come back online to say how happy they are)
  • Why you need to be empathic, think about solutions and try a variety of different things
  • How to set up an internal social media hub to have the social media savvy experts ready to respond to questions as they arise
  • The tool Jennifer uses to manage trending topics, know who has answered what and figure out how to improve the customer’s experience
  • Why you don’t have to answer everything and how to leverage generic answers to help thousands of people.

Connect with Jennifer on Twitter @JLoOnTheGo and check out @HRBlock, @HRBlockAnswers, H&R Block’s Facebook page, their website, blog and the Get It Right Community.

What did you learn from this video? What social media tactics do you use to improve customer relations? Please leave your comments below.

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About the Author, Michael Stelzner

Michael Stelzner is the founder and CEO of Social Media Examiner, founder of My Kids' Adventures and author of the books Launch and Writing White Papers. He's also the host of the Social Media Marketing podcast. Other posts by »




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  • http://mytwittertoolbox.com David Perdew

    Kudos to H&R Block for being a listener, and in the video I heard good things that people would appreciate in this type of social media service – privacy, empathy, and one-on-one communication. In an environment that most people dread, it’s nice to see that the attitude of the company is to help rather than hinder the process. Nice post, David.

  • http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/ Michael A. Stelzner

    Thanks David. I was impressed as well.

  • http://twitter.com/BostonRS Scott Ludwig

    This is a great post, Michael! I’ve always been a fan of H&R Block’s social presence and often use them as a case study. Back in 2008 when they really started to use social media, I was most impressed by their willingness to share what worked for them and what didn’t. This is sometimes the stuff that brands leave out as they roll out new programs. Showing audiences why you chose to do something new is essential when it comes to establishing yourself as a pioneer in the space. Especially in an industry like theirs.

    If you’re interested, my company, Digital Influence Group is holding a webinar on branded content with H&R Block, Joost and RedLever on Friday, March 11. Here’s the registration page: http://bit.ly/eAUhNK

    Thanks for this!

  • http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/ Michael A. Stelzner

    Scott – Thanks for your feedback. I think they have it all figured out.

  • http://www.marketingm8.co.uk Peter L Masters MCIM

    The key word here (as David quite rightly said) is listening and on every platform! I’m from the UK and don’t even know H & R Block, but from the video I can see they’re very smart, forward thinking and believe in sharing content. Nice work Michael, (as always) thank you!

  • http://www.ashish-patel.com Ashishaffiliate

    great post, thanks for sharing…

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  • http://www.socialmediareinvention.com/ tonyfaustino

    Michael, this is great to see a Kansas City-based organization receiving this type of recognition for social media excellence. Around the 5:55 minute mark of your interview, Jennifer Love makes reference to her social media hub team (1 director + 4 dedicated team members). The Director of Social Media at H&R Block is Zena Weist.

    I’ve had the privilege of meeting Zena at a KC Social Media Club event, and she’s a fantastic person (along with being an outstanding social media strategist). Zena is cited in David Meerman Scott’s latest book, The New Rules of Marketing & PR. In his book, David talks about how Zena and her colleagues successfully addressed an online communications crisis at H&R Block and what they learned to prevent a future situation from occuring.

    As you can tell, I’m proud of what Jennifer and Zena do for Kansas City by bringing it national recognition in social media prowess. After all, Boston and Silicon Valley aren’t the only U.S. regions excelling in social media strategy and execution, right?

  • http://grandresume.com/ resume writing services

    Very interesting information! Thank you!

  • http://www.facebook.com/SocialMediaAgents Anthony Galeano

    Thank you for sharing your Social Media Strategy with us. I notice you mention radian6 but what other type of software are you using? As a Social Media Guru I always like to see what other people are using out there. Other than that I like the video strategy and I was very impress with the presentation. Congratulations on such a success.

  • http://www.thewebcitizen.com Ilias Chelidonis

    The internal social media hub is really a smart idea, businesses need to have a team dedicated to the social media strategy from now on.

  • http://e-marketingforsensiblefolk.blogspot.com Anthony Miyazaki

    Jennifer Love and her social media team at H&R Block clearly have a handle on not only the content aspects of social media, but the two-way interactive nature that builds true community. Solving real (and urgent) problems in a timely manner, while doing what they can to “genericize” answers (to save on costs and to make sure tax specialists are available to customers for less generic questions) is impressive. I’d be curious what types of metrics H&R Block uses to measure cost-effectiveness. I’m sure they must.

    Informative piece Michael. Thanks!
    Anthony
    e-marketingforsensiblefolk.blogspot.com

  • http://ixld.com/ Web Strategy

    It’s cool to see a company like H&R Block being so progressive with social media.

    I recently noticed an ad in our local paper for H&R block that was using a QR code
    Cool, but the implementation was a little weak.

    Here’s my video blog post about it
    http://scan2.co/blogs/videos/h-r-block-using-qr-codes-in-their-advertising/128210

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  • http://www.bulkofficesupply.com/ ALange44

    I love how they move their conversations away from social media. That seems to be the most sensible thing for a company dealing with something as personal and stressful as taxes! Well done seeing social media as a way to benefit customers, and not just to capture leads.

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    h&r crooks

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