It’s the phrase that leaves any social media professional shivering with fear – negative comments from a customer on social. However, with more and more consumers turning to social media to voice their anger and frustrations with brands today, it’s something that pretty much all brands will face at some point.
It’s all about how you deal with this sort of backlash that will really matter, whether it’s just one comment from a disgruntled follower, or a whole thread of complaints. So, what’s the right way to go about solving these issues as swiftly and effectively as possible?
1. Read the comment. Then read it again
You need to 100% fully understand what you’re up against, and what the problem is. So make sure you totally get what you’re dealing with, before you attempt to do so. If it contains abusive or offensive language, you should remove it from your page. However, don’t remove any other types of complaints as these will leave your customers feeling even more frustrated, annoyed and ignored.
2. Identify how you can solve the problem for them
It’s a good idea before you reply to attempt to find a solution for your customer that you actually do know how you can solve their problem. Speak to the wider team or relevant person in your business who will know how to solve the issue, so that you can get it done as quickly (and with as few comments) as possible.
3. Acknowledge them
If finding a resolution is taking longer than you thought, you need to at least acknowledge the commenter and let them know that you are on it, and that you’re working with your team to resolve the issue. You can’t just leave your commenter waiting for a reply, as they’re likely to keep commenting until they do hear from you, which is likely to make the situation much worse.
4. Draft a reply, and then triple check it
When you have got your reply and resolution ready to go, you should draft it and check over it a good few times. Think about how you’d feel if you received that response to a problem, and whether you’d be comfortable saying it to a customer’s face or not. These simple questions can really help you nail that tone of voice, and help you to maintain a high level of customer service on social.
5. Monitor any further responses
Your job isn’t done when the reply has been sent, even if that means the initial problem is solved. You’ll need to monitor the comment or thread to keep an eye out for any further problems that may arise, or as well, to check whether they’ve given you some really positive feedback on your response, which can be great for creating brand advocates.