Social Solution Saturday: Negative Posts

You’ve worked hard to build your profile and the content you post to it, just like you’ve worked hard to build your business but unfortunately, you can’t please everyone. Sometimes, you have an unhappy customer. Sometimes, they write about it on your business page for the whole world to see.

If this happens, your next steps are crucial, not only to your upset customer but to your other followers and potential followers as well. Here are a few tips on how to deal with these less-than-complimentary posts.

Respond, even if it’s hard.

It may be easier to ignore the issue but unfortunately, not responding sends a bad message to your followers and might end up angering the person whose post it is even more.

So, take a deep breath. Maybe walk away from the computer or put your phone down for a bit before you decide to respond. Don’t take too long, but when you’re ready, breathe deep and address your upset follower. Be sure your response communicates respect and understanding and indicates any intention you have to rectify the problem. Once you’ve finished writing, you may want to re-read it once more before you hit post, to be sure it hits any and all points that need to be addressed.

Be patient.

Remember that you are the expert and what you may consider to be basic knowledge is foreign to some of your patients. Their issue may be something they don’t completely understand and if that is the case, you will want to address that.

Be understanding.

Take a step back from any emotions you might be feeling and put yourself in your customer’s shoes. This will go a long way in identifying their frustrations…and it might not even be your fault. A simple apology here will go a long way, whether it’s your fault or not. Understand where your customer is coming from and try to identify how you can make their experience better.

Contact your customer privately.

You may need to send a private message to your customer in order to resolve any issues they are having. Moving the conversation from public to private gives you the opportunity to show them you care and makes it easier to extend some sort of token – be it a token or refund – that shows them you are sorry. Offering them a token like this is not advisable on the public post because it signifies to other followers that they, too, can create problems just to receive special treatment.

Consider asking your customer to remove the post.

Now that you have addressed the issue privately, you may want to ask your customer to remove their post. Your customer may not realize that your page is an important part of your web presence and their post could have a negative effect on your reputation. Now that they are satisfied with how you addressed this issue, there’s nothing wrong with politely asking them to remove their post. More often than not, they will be okay with taking it down.

Respond to the original post.

If you don’t feel comfortable asking your client to remove the post or they don’t wish to, you should respond to the post publicly. As a general rule, you should never delete a negative post yourself. Active social media users know that if they see too many positive posts, there is a high probability that they will assume you are taking down any negative ones. But when you respond positively to the post, thanking your customer for their business, your followers will be able to see how well you take care of your customers. Something as simple as “We’re so sorry to hear about your bad experience, is there anything we can do to help?” can go a long way!

When worst comes to worst…

Your customer may not be responsive to your attempts at customer service or they may become hostile. If they post anything that offends you or your staff, you do have the option to remove them from your community. This is a last-resort option but if you or your staff feels threatened, certainly don’t hesitate to do it.

More information:

My original article was published here.


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