Tag Archives: negative review

Congratulations! You are a proud business owner and you have established yourself an online presence. Now that you’ve built a social media presence, you may come face to face with negative reviews or comments from time to time. But how are you supposed to handle it? For the sake of your digital reputation you must handle it with professionalism. Social media is a unique public environment that has its own kind of culture and expectations. Traditional customer service and public relations tat most business owners are experts at may not always be enough. How you, as a business owner, handle negative comments will go a long way toward bringing in a new client or driving a potential sale away. Read on etiquette for handling complaints or negative reviews online.

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The following tips can help you handle a negative comment appropriately, keeping your clients happy and coming back.

Address the comment directly: usually a negative comment or review falls into one of the following categories: a business error, a misunderstanding, a complaint or spam. Identify the category and come up with a positive solution that addresses the problem efficiently.

Don’t stall: in the realm of social media, word travels like lightning, so respond quickly, especially during a more pressing issue. You should respond in hours or less; don’t let it delay for days later. A slow response can damage your company’s reputation and credibility.

Respond to a negative review in public: the culture of social media networks demands that you address the issue so the public can see your reliability and professionalism. You don’t need to discuss every detail in the public space. Try posting, tweeting, or commenting back in response with something like “please email me more information” or “looking forward to helping you. Could you please message me more?” Also when it is all resolved, communicate that back as well on the public platform. Say something like “Thanks so much for letting us know. Your satisfaction is important to us. I hope the issue has been resolved for you.” Follow up is very crucial. Make sure you comment on the original stream where the negative review was originally written.

Usually the client is not seeking to expose you as a scam on social media. They just want to vent to other users or try to force you to address the issue. You can turn the complaint or negative review into a golden opportunity by jumping at the chance to publicly show that you are there to provide a service and to help your clients because they matter to you. You are approachable and available to resolve issues. Follow through quickly.

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Don’t act defensive: When you get a negative review, don’t take it as a reflection on you or on your business. Handle the issue but do not react defensively because you do not want to escalate the problem. Be accommodating, polite and listen to what the complainant has to say closely so that you can try to help them.

Own up to your mistake: If your business made an error, don’t hide it. Don’t delete the comment or ignore it. It will only anger the commenter. You may move the conversation elsewhere. Deleting things on the internet is never a good idea because it will bring your integrity into question and it will solidify the complaint. You do not want to challenge the person negatively. Keep in mind this is in public, and you are being judged by all your followers. You can block users who abuse the site, and remove inappropriate comments (ie: racist, derogatory, etc.). Mistakes happen, and you just need to handle them. Recognize the negative review, apologize publicly and then take the conversation off the platform to resolve it.

Offer an incentive: When it comes to handling complaints, sometimes you have to go the extra mile to keep the client happy and get a positive out of the situation. If the client isn’t satisfied after your explanation, you can offer a business service or a discount.

Ask for their view: If someone posts a negative review you need to address it. Ask, “What do you feel I did wrong?” and go from there.  Ask what a good resolution would be. It’s basic customer service. Apologize and compensate them. Always be polite, pleasant and positive in all your posts to set the tone and rules of engagement on your page. Your followers may come to your defense in an open atmosphere if a negative review is out of place.