|Socially awkward: Handling negativity in the social space|
|Articles - Features|
|Monday, 16 July 2012 11:07|
By Jonathan Barrick
Barrie, Ontario -- July 16, 2012 -- One of the biggest fears businesses have about participating in social media channels is the terror of a dissatisfied customer ranting on Facebook or flooding Twitter with horrible stories of your business. I’m here to tell you two things:
1. Your customers shouldn’t be that angry to begin with, so social media isn’t really the problem you’re facing.
2. These comments and conversations are going to happen, with or without your participation, so you’d better believe that your silence here is deadly.
Now, the first point is really more of a “in a perfect world” comment, because we all know that errors happen. There will always be instances where you don’t meet your promises 100 percent of the time.
However, a promise that you can meet 100 percent of the time is addressing concerns and complaints promptly, politely and professionally. Social media gives your business the golden opportunity to publicly show that you care about customer satisfaction, that you want to make things right and that you aren’t afraid to admit that yes, you are human.
The trick is to not be afraid of talking with your customers publicly. Your customer service responses should be something that you’re proud of. They should be something that you want to showcase publicly. People like to do business with people who care, and there’s no greater indicator of caring to a customer than what your business does when things don’t go as planned. Research has shown that a customer who has a negative experience made right is more likely to be loyal than one who simply has a “satisfactory” experience. Caring MATTERS. Don’t be afraid to show it.
I’d like to offer a handful of tips that you can use to determine the best course of action when faced with a negative comment in social media.
1. Respond Immediately: You don’t need to know the whole story right away to let someone know that they’re being heard. A simple “We’re sorry you had a bad experience. We are looking in to it right away and will contact you soon!” gets the conversation off to the right start by letting them know “Yes, we hear you” and “We want to learn what happened.” Then get to work on really finding out what the problem was, and fix it.
2.Update, Update, Update: While the personal details of any incident don’t always need to be shared publicly, you should never leave a negative comment situation with only an opening response. Any time you get a new piece of info that is important, respond on the original comment letting the customer know that new info is available and what they should do. Something along the lines of “We’ve tracked down the problem and are taking steps to prevent it from recurring. Let us know if you have any other questions!” does the job wonderfully, and leaves the ball in their court.
3. Follow-up: Once you think the issue has been resolved, and all is good, check back after a few days and do a quick follow-up with the customer to ensure that they are 100 percent taken care of. Sometimes new questions arise that customers may be hesitant to bring up after the fact. This is your chance to be a shining customer service star and go above and beyond the call of duty.
These three simple steps can do wonders for how your customers view your business. They show you’re not afraid to talk about errors, and that you really want to make sure that things get made right. What makes customers more irate than anything else is the feeling of being ignored. By taking the initiative and responding promptly, continuing to update them throughout the process and following-up after the problem is solved, you show them that you’re not going to turn a blind eye or deaf ear to their concerns. Social media is one of the most powerful customer relationship management tools in your marketing kit. Don’t hesitate to make use of it!
|Last Updated on Monday, 16 July 2012 11:29|
By PDADCO payday loans