Social media has come a long way the last few years and instead of being used for personal use, the majority of businesses are using it as a promotional tool for their goods and services. It has also become a platform for complaints. This is something that was probably not considered in the early days and many small businesses flounder uncomfortably when having to deal with negativity.
If you are able to, put some time aside and set up a plan that you can utilize in the event of negativity occurring. The plan can include standard acknowledgements, response times, statements or any information that you feel will help your business deal with it professionally and efficiently.
Customers are not historically a patient breed. They expect answers immediately and will find ways to obtain a reaction. Posting a complaint, or negative comment, on a social media platform, which is in ‘real time’ will gain just that.
As a company how do you deal with this?
You will need to deal with the complaint quickly and effectively by responding immediately. It is a known fact that customers who have got nowhere by using traditional methods have had their issues resolved in record time – if they have turned to social media to complain. Of course, your digital reputation is just as important as your ‘in-person’ reputation.
In your response, acknowledge the complaint and empathize. Thank them for bringing it to your attention and provide a reasonable solution. Others will see the quick action and you will be deemed to show you care, and have the situation under control.
At this point, once the ‘visible’ interaction has been provided, move to ‘invisible’ interaction and take the conversation to a private message, or email. Even better, get the customers number and pick up the phone! A real person talking to you is much more personable!
With any luck you will regain the confidence of your customer and they will provide a positive response to the outcome of the initial negative issue.