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Dealing with Negative Comments on Your Facebook Page

11/8/2012
Social media is a popular topic on this blog as it has fast become one of the staples of a successful small business marketing plan. The backbone of most social media plans is Facebook as we’ve discussed several times now. Facebook is a great avenue for promoting and growing your small business and engaging and interacting with your customers. Sometimes, however, your customers may post or share some negative feedback. While it may be hard to read, and hear, it is the reality of having a social media presence. So, what do you do when you see a less-than-glowing post on your brand’s Facebook Page?
 
1. Do not delete it. Deleting a negative Facebook post will not make the issue go away. In fact, it will have the opposite effect. Your poster may get more upset that you disregarded them and come back with a more negative post. This is not without exception. There are select topics and posts that may warrant instant deletion, however. Subject to your business’ social media policy, posts that are discriminatory, abusive, inappropriate, etc. should be removed. It is always good to let your Facebook audience know why though. This is part of the transparency social media requires, and your fans will respect you for it.
 
2. Respond as quickly as possible. You must respond to all feedback posts, especially those that are negative. Failing to respond seems to your customer, and all of your fans, that you don’t care and are not responding to their needs or concerns. When you respond, you show your fans that you value their feelings and opinions and will work to rectify any issues. A well-crafted thoughtful response goes a long way in showcasing your level of customer service.
 
3. Take it offline. As quickly as possible, contact your concerned customer offline via private message or email. This allows you to delve further into their issue and make them feel that you are genuinely concerned about helping them, without showcasing it on your wall.
4. Address the original post. When you respond, make sure you include it in the comments of the original post. Be sympathetic and mention your plans (or results) for a successful resolution to the problem or concern.
 
5. Ask the customer for positive feedback following the resolution. Assuming you have fixed the issue and turned the situation around, you can take the next step in dealing with the negative Facebook post. Once your customer is happy again, they are likely to post a positive sentiment on their own, or, you can certainly ask them to. This third-party account of how well you handled their issue will go a long way with your current fans and future customers.
 
What happens if nothing above works and your customer continues to wage war on your Page? As a last resort only, you may take steps to delete the negative posts and ban the customer from your Facebook community. This should be a rare occurrence though since most people “liking” you truly enjoy your brand and what you offer.
 
What experiences have you had with negative Facebook posts? How have you handled them?
 
Do you have questions about how you can improve your online efforts? Contact us today and ask about our customized solutions.

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