Seven years ago, something happened that had plagued me for years as a naive content marketer who was more enthusiastic about resumes than real experience. I worked as a freelance blogger and graduated from college. A typical morning involved writing, publishing, and scheduling social media content and blog posts for clients. My weekend was relaxing and the coffee on Monday morning was almost perfect.
Then it happened. Someone said he hates my blog post. What’s worse? They said I couldn’t write anything worth licking.
surprised. I was shocked. Discouraged.
I was so surprised that I couldn’t even reply.
Today I don’t think about ignoring negative feedback. Responding to negative feedback is one of the best ways to showcase your brand’s personality. All you need is a little creativity, honesty, and a solid grasp of the facts. It’s known as wit – the ability to think quickly and is often associated with humor.
@BArailrunner, responding to negative feedback is a great way to showcase your brand’s personality. Click to tweet
Here are seven tips to use when dealing with negative feedback. This will strengthen your relationship with your audience and showcase your brand’s fun and professional personality.
1. Play cool
Every time I read a negative comment, a bad review, or an insulting remark, I take a long deep breath and read it again.
There is a temptation to reply immediately to counter all the horrifying things posted publicly. Responding in the heat of the moment always makes things worse.
Take the time to review your reply and don’t jump to the conclusion. First, consider the content of the complaint and then create an answer.
If you’re good at writing humorous writing (or if you have colleagues), take advantage of it. Responding with real humor is one of the best ways to relieve tension. Just as a smile relieves face-to-face tension, classy humor can turn a bad situation into a great one.
@BArailrunner answers negative comments with real humor to relieve tensions. #socialmedia Click to tweet
That’s exactly what Sainsbury’s did when it turned a customer’s clever but frustrated tweet into a viral brand victory.
2. Understand your responsibilities
It’s easy to think of the first responsibility in responding as damage control to soothe commenters. You absolutely need to Canada Mobile Number resolve the situation, but your first responsibility lies with your audience and your brand .
I will clarify. Target audiences include only those who have the potential to become paid customers or brand advocates. In other words, focus on those who have the potential to become qualified sales leads.
If the commenter is not part of the target market, do not go outboard to appease him or her . Instead, address the issue and showcase your brand’s personality.
If the negative commenters aren’t in the target market, don’t go overboard to soothe them, says @BArailrunner. Click to tweet
Everlane recorded a victory after sharing an elegant and entertaining reaction to a brutal customer complaint on Instagram.
3. Generic does not cut it
Please do not reply in a general statement. It’s a frustrated recipe. You need to customize the response to address your concerns.
You can always find out that someone is using a copy-and-paste response instead of writing a personal message. Needless to say, this infuriates people.
Do you remember what happened in 2013 when Bank of America used bots to generate automated Twitter responses?
4. Identify desperate interactions
When creating and sharing content online, there are three types of brand dislikes you will always encounter.
- Trolls-People who enjoy agitating trouble trying to provoke irrational or emotional reactions
- Goblins – People who get angry with your brand and rampage on a personal level
- Hobgoblins-Dangerous Hybrids-People who troll your brand non-stop and use very offensive language little by little while doing everything personally
It is rarely possible to infer with any of these three invaders. If so, either (1) hide or remove the feedback, or (2) sharpen your wit to see if you can create a moment that your ideal audience will enjoy … just like Wendy’s.
5. Respond kindly, not in kind
It’s not always clear why negative feedback occurs or what the real problem is. In this case, the best approach is to ensure that the original message understands the intended spirit. Was it hostile, confusing, humorous, or frustrated? Once you understand the intent of the message, you can create the appropriate response.
In 2013, Tesco responded to a Twitter user who tagged his account with a joke about his friend’s mobile voice email. Tesco’s reaction may seem rude or insensitive, but ultimately resulted in a playful exchange and promoted positive recognition of the brand. Because Tesco considered the intent of the message.
6. Transform conversations
By changing the story and owning the experience, you turn the negative into the positive. You don’t necessarily have to say “sorry”, ban offensive comments, or write long replies. Sometimes you need to own it and laugh rudely about it with your audience. Be true to the personality of your brand.
7. Block or ban (in rare circumstances)
Banning someone or hiding comments should be a last resort. Do your best to reach a peaceful solution in a way that maintains brand integrity and addresses legitimate concerns.
However, if someone who is particularly offensive, profane, or completely offensive has publicly attacked your brand, you may ban them. Here are the three steps I follow:
- Hide or remove derogatory or offensive terms.
- Ask the brand to send a private message to resolve the situation and reply to the original poster.
- If they ignore you and keep posting offensive comments, ban posters.
Tip: Make sure your viewers know the steps to deal with offensive language by publishing it in the guidelines. It helps to post them before potential issues occur and avoid them appearing reactionary.
Prevention is the best medicine
It’s always best to anticipate problems and address potential concerns before publishing content.
For example, Facebook allows you to ban offensive language when posting to a page.
1) Go to Settings at the top right of the page.
2) Select “Page Moderation”.
3) Enter the prohibited words from the page and click [Save Changes].
It’s as easy as that.
Unfavorable criticism is unavoidable when content is consistently published and shared over a long period of time. However, witty replies that satisfy commenters and increase brand awareness can help minimize damage.
If you see comments that surprise, shock, or discourage you (or your brand), keep the following three tips in mind.
- Negative feedback is better than content ambiguity.
- The goal of all interactions is to improve brand credibility and awareness.
- Stay true to your brand’s personality.
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