It’s been said that if someone is happy with your business, they will tell their 3 best friends. But if they are unhappy, they will tell the next 10 people they see. Today, that conversation is likely to take place on Facebook or Twitter, where those 10 people they may tell, can quickly become 100 or 1,000. We can’t control the conversations taking place on social media platforms, but we can monitor and respond to what is being said. Receiving poor or negative feedback is a common concern for business owners when debating if they want to jump in. There are several things we can do so that we can respond and learn from such reviews should they show up.
When dealing with negative reviews or feedback, the first thing we have to do is remove our emotions, and listen to what the consumer is saying. When these reviews happen, don’t delete them or try to sweep them under the rug. Rather, be active. Respond calmly and appropriately to as many messages as you can, regardless of whether good or bad. Leave a reply to the original post and show to your community that you are listening to their comments and that you’re willing to resolve the issue. Follow up with a private message if needed to discuss with the individual what you’ll do to fix the problem.
Try not to view these negative comments as a strike against you, but rather as an opportunity to learn and grow with feedback from the consumers. The comments left by consumers may be indicators to areas of our businesses that we need to pay a little extra attention to. Perhaps we need to focus a bit more on the quality of our products. Or maybe we need to focus more on our customer service.
If a review is excessively negative and nasty, the reviewer is likely just ranting. Many readers will discredit that review as an individual ranting just to hear themself talk. Again, don’t ignore or delete these comments, just bear in mind that your community will probably view it as nonsense or ramblings.
Lets not forget, not all reviews are bad. You can look at many small business Facebook pages and see countless comments from their patrons praising the business for a job well done. When you get good feedback from your Facebook community, be sure to comment on as many as possible. Let the community know that you are monitoring your wall and that you are truly thankful for the kind words. When your community can see you responding to good feedback left, they are more likely to leave good reviews themselves.
Conversations, both good and bad, about our companies will happen. While we can’t control the conversation, we can monitor, respond, and learn from it. Facebook and other social media platforms have given business owners a great new avenue for receiving feedback from our consumers. How we deal with negative feedback will determine whether we will sink or swim in the social media sea.