Whether you’re a star on social media, deliver an excellent customer experience or focus on fantastic customer service, you will always face negative feedback or comments online.

 

Positive feedback is important, valuable and satisfying but it’s equally as important to respond to negative feedback. Left unmanaged these comments can become damaging and potentially harmful to your brand.

 

Far from being destructive and indicating ruined customer relationships, negative feedback provides a golden opportunity to show off high levels of customer care and reengage customers in a positive experience with your business.

 

All is not lost if you follow these top tips to handle negative feedback online! 

 

Offer a timely response

 

First and foremost, it’s important that you respond within adequate time. Leaving a negative comment unattended could spark a wildfire online and see your business in the middle of a PR disaster. If you typically use a social media scheduling platform or dedicated online review platform, it’s crucial that you effectively monitor these so you can handle a situation before it gets out of control.

 

Be genuine – not a robot!

 

It’s crucial that you approach any response with sincerity. Give a personable and genuine response to reassure the user that they are speaking to a real person and that their issue is being taken seriously. A blanket response with no personality is likely to annoy the user and can often be picked up by other commenters, spurring further negative messages. 

 

Train staff to deal with negative feedback professionally

 

Any communications under your brand name or by employees are representative of your whole business, therefore it’s important that your tone and behaviour online is professional. If different members of the team are accessing social media or responding to comments on a specialised forum, it’s important that staff are trained to communicate appropriately.

 

Know when to back away

 

Although it is important to address customer issues, it’s also essential to know when to back away from a discussion. Some social media users are just out to create a scene online and you’ll need to judge when a conversation isn’t progressing or showing any signs of being resolved. Avoid getting involved in an argument as this could damage your brand reputation.

 

Which platforms are you using?

 

Whether you use social media, a dedicated review site or a mixture of platforms, it’s important to realise that users may be reviewing or commenting on your business across various different sites. A quick search online will help you to ascertain which sites are going to be important for you to manage and which need less attention.

 

It’s all about protecting your online brand reputation!

 

Online feedback plays an important role in your brand reputation. If left unmanaged, negative comments could damage your business and deter potential customers. However, it’s not just online feedback that matters! Read the Superfast Business Wales blog on how to manage your online reputation to understand the components of an effective digital and communications strategy.

 

Has your business developed an effective digital presence?

 

Join the Superfast Business Wales Digital and Online Marketing Masterclass to access free, practical advice. Register now!

 

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