Monday, July 17, 2017

We all have experienced, or maybe have secretly been, social media’s “Debbie Downer” before. The person who rates a restaurant one star because their food took too long, tags a business in their status due to poor customer service, or posts negative comments every time a company posts a picture.

As a business on social media, you need tough skin, but you also need to know how to respond to any negative feedback.

How to respond

Respond quickly. The longer you wait to respond to a customer, the longer other customers will come across the negative feedback and see that no solution was provided.

Respond publicly. If a customer decides to complain publicly, then respond publicly. Other people can see both sides and will be happy to see a solution was provided. You can offer to message them for more information if necessary, but always respond.

Apologize. The customer is always right, right? Treat the online customer as if they were in person, apologize from the start and take fault for what is going on.

Take action. Provide a solution in your response that will satisfy both the customer and your business. This shows that you take complaints seriously and make an effort to keep the customer happy.

Stay calm. If the customer is not letting go of the situation, stay patient. Keep your composure and offer a number for the customer to call or a location for them to visit in order to get off of social media.

What not to do

Do not ignore it. Ignoring negative feedback shows poor customer service skills and allows other customers to see that the comment has been left unresponded to. 

Do not delete it. Deleting negative feedback also shows poor customer service skills by pretending a problem does not exist. The person who posted it may become more upset and comment again or find another route to get their point across. 

How to recover

Whether it is a small comment on a picture or large post that gets shared a thousand times, negative feedback is never a good thing. Take the opportunity to show off your customer service skills and show that your company values their time. If handled correctly, your social media’s “Debbie Downer” will leave with a better attitude about your business as well as the other customers who viewed the interaction.