As a small business, you know how important your reputation is on social media. You monitor every comment on your Facebook page, every tweet with your Twitter handle and comments or hashtags made linking to your brand on Pinterest. So what do you do when something negative pops up?
If you are a small business marketer or owner, a negative remark, tweet or comment can leave you feeling defeated. You may take it personal. Or you may do everything in your power to push it away. But these negative remarks, which are hopefully minimal, can actually be seen as an opportunity and something to take a lesson from. Here are a few things you can learn from negativity in social media.
What your customers want
Negative comments should be taken as a suggestion rather than a criticism. If your customers are complaining about a certain feature that is lacking from your business plan, learn from this and consider finding a way to offer it. Or, if your customers are complaining about having a tough time finding information on your website, consider hiring a new graphic designer or small business copywriter. These experts can give your pages the update they need so that you can make it easier for your customers to find what they need.
Taking what customers say as a suggestion rather than a complaint will allow your small business to be more innovative and come up with new ways to attract new and retain your current customers.
Where your business is not quite meeting the mark
Perhaps your customers are vocally unhappy with the quality of your product or poor service that you provide. This is a more serious complaint and should be taken seriously. When a customer publically complains that you are not living up to the promises you make, your company may be turning new customers away, as well as losing current customers that you may not be aware of because they are likely not complaining in a public forum like social media.
If you hear a negative response about the quality of your offering, it’s time to do some reputation control. First, consider the validity of the negative remark. Then, respond quickly in both a public and private manner. Let the person know that you will do everything in your power to resolve any issues, then make sure to exceed their expectations on the second attempt. This can have a far more powerful effect than just erasing the negative remark.
What type of response elicits a positive response
Once you have responded to a negative remark on social media, check back to see how the response was received. This can also teach your brand a lot about what customers want in terms of their relationship with your company. If they thank you for getting their issue resolved quickly, you can learn that in the future, a fast response to an issue is crucial for saving a damaged relationship with a customer.
Embrace social media for both its positive and negative remarks and learn from both of them. This will help you to drive new business and create a stronger relationship with your customers making your small business stronger in the long run.