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social media

Responding to Negative Feedback

Last week, I discussed 
the importance of social listening for your brand. This topic sparked a further discussion into responding to negative feedback. Here are a few things to keep in mind when you are faced with negative content.

Don’t Take it Personally

Dealing with negativity can be very challenging especially when someone types a comment or post out of anger. Remind yourself to stay calm and not to take it personally. People get behind their keyboard and go at a brand while forgetting a person is on the other side of it too. If you react in your response, you will only escalate a situation. Another thing to keep in mind is that some people exaggerate situations in the hopes of free stuff. This is not true for all. Some people are genuinely bringing an issue to your attention. This is an important reminder before drafting a response.  

Write a Response and Proof it

I find it works best if you read the negative comment, review, or post at least twice. This helps make sure you understand what the issue is. Then you can write a response that fits. It’s good to apologize especially if their experience sounds like it wasn’t up to your brand standard. When looking further into their visit, don’t be afraid to ask for specifics like which locate, date and time. It’s also a good idea to have them private message you. This allows you to discuss the issue in more detail and get more information without outside commentary. Always proofread your response before sending (there is nothing worse than a typo to an angry customer).  Lastly, some instances will require you to follow up with the person. It is very important to do so. It shows their feedback actually matters and that is really what most people are looking for.

Know When to Stop Responding

There are situations where people will refuse to private message you. They will continually comment on a post or review and seem to ignore any response you give them. Use your discretion when dealing with these types of situations. You won’t be able to make amends with everyone situation that comes up but if you tried responding, that is all you can do. Don’t get in an ongoing debate.

The “Hide” Option is Your Friend

Some people just like to post their rude comments. For example, we have posted pictures of food for our clients and every once in a while get someone that comments “ew gross”. Mind you, numerous other comments specify how delicious but there always has to be the person to rock the boat. These are comments we tend to let them be. This person isn’t sharing about an experience, they don’t have any constructive criticism. This is when the hide button comes in handy. We hide these comments to deter unnecessary negativity on the page.

The responses needed for negative content vary but if you stay calm, unbiased, and kind, you will have an easier time dealing with these situations. Most of the time, you’ll turn an unsatisfied customer into an appreciative fan who felt their opinion matter. This will go a long way in terms of the loyalty of your customers.


social media

The Importance of Social Listening
One of the most important things you can do for your brand is social listening. This is an opportunity for you to interact with fans on your social media pages. If you aren’t doing this, I am going to tell you the importance of social listening in the hopes you’ll see what you’re missing out on.

What is it?

Social listening is when you go through your notifications and content on your social pages to respond to comments, interact with posts, and check reviews. By doing this, you are able to monitor what people are saying about your brand online and respond. I usually do this twice a day, morning and late afternoon, unless a situation calls for immediate action.

Why is it important?

As I previously mentioned, I feel like social listening is one of the most important things we do and one of the most valuable things for our clients. It takes a lot of time to go through all your content and pages but if you can stay on top of it, you are more in control of your brand’s online presence. Social listening gives us the chance to thank customers who leave a great review and we get a chance to start a conversation with the customers whose experience wasn’t to their liking.

The positive comments give you insight into what fans like about your brand which can be used in future posts. It is also nice to share with your team when a customer gives a shout out to an employee for a job well done. My favorite part is the fun conversations that can stem from a fan comment. I love following a witty comment up with a gif. Our client, Roosters Wings, is a casual sports bar with fans who are a lot of fun to engage with. Here are two examples:

The Importance of Social Listening

Even if you just react to a fan comment, that goes a long way to show you are reading what they’re saying. We’ve had fans reply to their original comment after we liked it because they were so excited. Why does an extra comment matter? It means more engagement and content reach is all driven by engagement. You’re not only talking with a fan but you’re getting your posts shown to more people.

With that being said, you don’t get the good without the bad…

People get online to say everything and anything these days. They update their profiles with their daily to-dos and most likely what they’ve eaten that day. With the level of sharing going on, people aren’t going to miss their chance to share about having a bad experience. While you can’t stop the negative comments and reviews from happening, you can change the outcome of the situation. You can do this simply by responding. Most people really just want to be heard. I could go on about the negative content and could honestly write a whole blog on that alone…come back next week for the full overview on responding to negative content!

How can I start social listening?

First, you should look at your profiles to see when fans are interacting the most. This will help you determine how often and when you should social listen. Second, go through your notifications and see how people are interacting with your content. Start responding to any comments, messages, or reviews but use your discretion on how long ago some of them were left. Lastly, set a schedule to check your profiles. This will help get you in the habit of checking and consistency is key.

It’s not too late to start doing this for your brand and you will be surprised by the interactions that come out of it. Social media is a great tool to turn fans into loyal customers.