This article is part of our blog series, Social Media for Landscapers, featuring tips on how you can take advantage of social media for your business.
Social media has created a space for customers to voice their thoughts and share experiences. It’s expanded word-of-mouth reviews from a neighbor or two, to thousands of people logging in online; and social sharing and online feedback can have positive and negative impacts on a business.
There’s a lot to be gained from both positive and negative feedback online. Here’s how to best handle customer comments and feedback on social media.
If your business has a presence on social media you’re bound to receive some negative feedback (if you’re just getting started on social media, take a look at our previous post about setting up a social media page).
While negative comments seem like they have the potential to damage your company brand, you can take control of the situation and change perceptions to show followers your dedication to amazing customer service!
Let’s say a customer had a bad experience with one of your employees, and posts about it on one of your social media pages, or tags your company in their personal post. The first thing you should do is ask your employee about the situation. After gathering as much information as possible, respond in a polite, calm tone. Apologize for any inconvenience and try to correct any mistake that was made—even if your employee isn’t entirely at fault.
If a customer is complaining about your company’s services or a job, again remain calm, assess the situation and gather more information. Once you better understand what happened, work to fix the problem. If a job wasn’t done the way the customer expected, offer to make it right. No one expects you to be perfect, but apologizing for mistakes and offering to fix them shows great character on your company’s part.
When negative comments occur, opening up a dialog and being transparent through communication creates a situation where your customer can get answers and a fix for their problem, which can turn a potentially brand damaging situation into one where you look like a customer services super star!
However, it’s also important to know when to take the exchange out of the public eye. Utilize direct messaging when appropriate.
The main point to remember when responding to negative comments on social media is that you’re not just responding to one person’s comments; an entire community of followers is watching. Depending on your reaction, you can either alienate more customers, or gain respect from them.
All you need to do is work to remedy the issue and remain courteous and understanding.
When you receive positive comments or feedback on social media, it might be tempting to just leave them alone, but responding to positive comments shows your appreciation for the positive feed back, and shows the customer they have been heard.
Responding to positive feedback on social media isn’t as intricate as responding to negative feedback. Simply “like” the comment or respond back with a thank you or an anecdote about the job you performed for them.
This can build loyalty and encourage them to post more positive comments.
Try to respond to everything
It can be difficult, but having active social media accounts is a great way to be available to customers. The more you respond to followers and customers on social media, the more responses and feedback you will get, which will provide you greater insight for your business.
What you can gain from social media feedback
Social media can sometimes feel daunting, but it can be a powerful tool to engage with customers and gain deep insight into customer needs and wants.
Positive feedback can provide reinforcement that what you’re doing is working. Negative feedback provides you with opportunities to grow and pivot if something isn’t working the way you hoped it would.
Don’t shy away from either type of response online, and don’t take it personally. Use social media as a looking glass into your customers’ views of your company and respond accordingly.
How to get better reviews online
Your social media reviews and comments are often a direct reflection of your customer service performance. The best way to get more positive reviews is to provide great service.
Encourage happy customers to visit your social media pages and ask them to write a review. Actively promoting social media accounts shows customers you are seeking their opinions and value what they have to say. Communication between customer and company is the best way to build your online brand and grow your business.
Keep an eye out for future tips on social media to promote your business. Have a question? Post it in the comments.