Approaching negative comments on social media for businesses

By Staff writer | 17 Nov 2018 at 12:28hrs
Social media
BUSINESSES often struggle with how to approach negative comments on social media, but engaging with customers and their criticisms can go a long way.

Most people say they would view a company more positively if it responded to negative comments on social media.

A negative comment on social media does not mean a blow for your company's online reputation; there are strategies that will allow you to recover while strengthening your brand.

Experts at top public relations firms talked about three ways businesses can handle negative comments on social media.

Responding quickly is the first fundamental principle.

Before social media, companies had time to strategise when faced with criticism.

Now, people expect companies to respond on social media and quickly.

"The speed of information in general is accelerating," said Laura Reagen, a PR expert.

Social media fosters an "instant" culture. People expect companies to engage with them on social media and quickly because there aren't any barriers preventing them from doing so.

Although people expect quick responses, this doesn't mean they expect a quick solution.

When businesses receive criticism on social media, they should first respond to the negative comment. This shows the customer and others that the business cares and is working to address the issue.

Secondly, implementing a proactive social media strategy allows companies to have more control over conversations happening about their brand.
"Social media gives a channel for direct communication with end users and consumers," said Jason Sherman , a PR expert.

Lastly, using social media as an avenue for customer service
will continue voicing  their concerns.

Businesses can regain some control by embracing social media as an extension of customer service.

A number of people say social media has made customer service easier for consumers.

It can make it easier for businesses, too.

Companies that embrace social media as an extension of their customer service efforts can closely monitor social media comments and respond in a controlled and professional way, as they would a customer service complaint.

"You can't call Netflix on the phone and complain," Reagen said. "The expectation is you're going to solve this online."



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