Every brand comes across a disgruntled customer at some point. When that customer posts a negative feedback on one or more of your social media pages, it’s up to you to turn it into a positive. The important thing to remember is that people who post complaints on social media just want to be heard. AND many times the way a company responds can make all the difference!
It is imperative that you take the time to read over their post and try to figure out a way to make the situation better. Most of the time, customers write a negative review in the heat of the moment. After they post and have some time, their anger will subside a bit.
It doesn’t matter if you agree with them that your company did something wrong, you are in the public arena and saying “I’m sorry” you feel that way about your experience goes a long way. Acknowledging their pain and making it clear that you’d like to fix the situation not only shows this particular customer that you care, but it shows everyone monitoring the post that you care. Did you know that 33% of negative reviews turn positive when you respond?
Once you’ve acknowledged your unhappy customer, try to take the conversation private by encouraging them to email you the details. Often a little humility or humor can diffuse the situation.
For example, check out how Australian grocer “Woolworth’s turns negative social media feedback into positive PR”. An unhappy customer, Ryan Goodall, used Facebook as a sounding board when he was upset about getting overripe avocados from a local Woolworths. He posted a picture along witty tirade about how disappointed he was that the avocados did not live up to the Woolworth’s ‘the fresh food people idea’.
Within 20 minutes, the social media team of Woolworths responded, “Ryan!-the disappointment is more than we can bare! Private Message us your number and we will hook a brother up.” This humorous and sincere response triggered a huge amount of kudos from social media users. The original post received 35,000 likes and over 2,500 shares.
By listening and acting proactively, Woolworths was able to get more positive traction for its brand. The moral of this story is that your brand should be consistently monitoring its social channels and promptly respond to any negative feedback in the most positive appropriate manner possible in order to flip a negative situation into a positive one.
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