When starting a digital brand, unsatisfied customers who leave negative comments about your brand is no surprise. The first instinct when you see a negative comment is to protect your brand by deleting the feedback.
Deleting is not usually the wisest choice, but the possibility of damage to online reputation makes you act fast to save your image. Knowing how to deal with negative comments is essential for the progress of your business.
Not every negative comment spells doom for your brand. Sometimes, it’ a wake-up call for you to improve your services and address underlying problems. Let’s face it,it takes a lot of effort to maintain your online brand. And at times, you can be too busy with other activities to discover a fault in service delivery.
A proper approach to social media comments has benefits and can turn negative customer feedback into engaging guest experiences. Before deleting negative comments on social media, consider the following:
Develop a Crisis Management Policy
One way to show professionalism in your response is by developing a crisis management policy. If you run an established business, you may have several people managing your social media accounts.
It is also possible that your social media accounts receive many negative comments. To find a balance between acceptable and unacceptable comments, you need the policy to guide your every action. You need a specific procedure of addressing positive, negative, and neutral feedback.
A crisis management policy portrays you as a professional that’s ready to deal with issues as they develop.
Respond As Soon As Possible
If a customer leaves a comment on social media, the last thing they’d expect is response weeks or months after the complaint. Even if it is okay to check your emotions before responding, it is not appropriate to let an issue linger for so long to the point of frustrating the customer.
Remember that a timely response to a negative comment could lead to positive outcomes in your business. And a timely reply is an opportunity for you to win the trust of more customers. A quick response is a clear sign that you care and acknowledge the issues at hand.
Admit if You are Wrong
Let’s admit it -no business is perfect. You may have plans to provide exceptional products and offer outstanding customer services, but a slight mistake could lead to everything going the opposite way. This could result in negative comments on your social media pages and a need for a response from your side.
The first thing you can do to resolve a negative issue is to substantiate the complaint’s validity. If the results show your business is in the wrong, it is only right for you to admit it.
Your response can come as an apology or answer to how things happened and how you plan the rectify the issue. A point to note is that the best place to carry out this conversation is offline. That way, you prevent the negative energy that results from accepting a wrong on online platforms.
Encourage Offline Conversations
When dealing with negative comments on social media, the best thing a business can do is take an online conversation offline. Offline communications are easy to handle, and there’s enough room to offer a detailed solution.
After every negative comment, make sure you give the follower an invitation to call, inbox, or email your business. You can also provide them with an opportunity to visit your business and have a one-on-one conversation with your team. In-person discussions have proven to be an effective way of resolving negative reviews.
Control Your Emotions
Emotions have a way of controlling our responses, especially if you are upset about an online comment. Moods can affect how you deal with challenges, and if not careful, you could say something regretful.
So before responding to a negative comment, acknowledge your feelings, and find a way to calm down. Give a response only when you are sure you can communicate professionally. Have a crisis management plan in hand so you can be sure that every response you give is in line with company policies.
Remember that even the most loyal customers are watching. So, everything you do or say could determine their future interactions with your business.
Understand that Not All Complaints are Rectifiable
Have you ever heard of social media “trolls”? They exist, and they can find their way to your social media pages, causing a scene without necessarily seeking a resolution. Any effort to reach out to them is usually unsuccessful, and that leaves you wondering about their business intentions.
In such a case, your first attempt at resolving the issue can be to take the conversation offline. Try to communicate through inboxes and find out their underlying problem with your brand. Give them time to respond and observe if the comments stop.
If the negative comments do not stop, consider the issue unresolvable and move on to protect your brand. You can choose to delete previous comments or block the follower from your channels. It’s likely that other customers follow the comments and agree with your decision to remove the offender.
These strategies should help you resolve issues on negative comments. But to be effective, you need the right tool to monitor customer sentiments across various channels. The best tool should deliver information at the right time to allow for quick responses to complaints.
Matt Canada has a background in graphic design, customer service and management. In his current role, he oversees marketing activities for Tatvam and also supports in sales and support activities. In his free time, Matt enjoys playing video games, spending time with his wife and running his own production company which is centered around creating inspirational content for others.