Social media may not be the most cost-effective platform to close leads, but it remains one of the best ways to nurture loyal customers. It’s there where you have daily touchpoints with your followers.

You get to stay top of mind and have that ever-coveted two-way dialogue — the kind that leads to brand loyalty that will last for years.

Plus, data show that increasing customer retention rates by 5 percent can increase profits anywhere from 25 to 95 percent. Luckily, social media is the second most effective digital market tactic for customer retention, right after email marketing.

Cultivate your followers into loyal customers with these four steps.

1. Listen to questions. Create content that answers.

Look back at the comments and direct messages you’ve gotten over the last three months. Make a note of every question you got from a customer. Tally them all up.

For every question that was asked more than 10 times, you should have a go-to piece of content that answers that question. And it should be intuitive. On Instagram, you should have a Story saved in your Highlights. On Facebook and Twitter, a URL to a webpage or video should suffice.

Your goal is twofold here. By creating content that’s in demand, you know the material will perform well. Plus, you’ll be able to delight your customers by quickly providing exactly what they’re looking for.

2. Answer as soon as possible.

On social, 42 percent of customers expect a response from your brand within an hour while more than 66 percent want a response within the same day, according to Edison Research.

You’ll be rewarded for answering client questions quicker. Responding to tweets faster impacts revenue the most, according to Twitter research. Get this. Customers were willing to pay $17 more per month for a phone plan if they got a response to their tweet in under four minutes. If they had to wait longer than 20 minutes, they’d only pay $3.52 more.

Every minute matters on social. You should always have someone standing by ready to help during standard business hours. Often, depending on volume, it’s best to have a customer service representative trained to handle requests like this on social.

Also, on Facebook Messenger, set up an automated response for people who message you outside of the hours you monitor messages. It shows you care and sets the expectation of when they’ll hear back from you.

3. Lean into negative comments and aim to please.

Frustrated, angry people on social media are the ones most desperate for a response. They want nothing more than for you to solve their problem.

In fact, 69 percent of people who tweeted negatively about a business felt more favorable about the company when they got a response, found Twitter research.

The real magic happens, though, when you take that negative comment, solve it and get that person on your side. Often, that means ditching the script of canned responses and truly bending over backward to right the wrong.

When you can resolve a conversation that started with a negative tweet, you’ll gain even higher brand favorability, and people will be willing to pay more.

4. Showcase your customers.

Share more videos, pictures and comments from your customers. They’ll be thrilled to be featured on one of their favorite company’s pages. Plus, your followers will go bonkers for the content.

User-generated content (UGC) gets 6.9 times more engagement than brand-created content, found Mavrck data. Even better, 90 percent of shoppers say UGC influences their decisions to make a purchase, according to TurnTo Networks and Ipsos.