Responding to keyboard warriors

There are many good approaches to negative comments and reviews on social media. When someone has their grumpy pants on and directs it at you and your business, here are five beginner mistakes to avoid:

(Unlike the Flairy team, not everyone is so nice with their keyboard usage….!)

1. Responding while emotionally charged:

We understand – someone has given a review on social media which is baseless and hurtful. You feel justified in putting that person right back in their place, but as a dear friend of mine says:

“If you give voice to the words that rise in anger, they will soon become the greatest speech you live to regret.” 

Remember, one bad review is not going to break your business. Most people will judge a business by the overall experience, not one whinging complaint!

2. Responding outside of privacy requirements:

Just because it is true, does not mean it is information you need to share on social media. Avoid giving personal information, e.g.: who the person was with; never mention minors; or the contents of their purchase/service. Personal information leaked online gives potential customers an uneasy view into the integrity of your business. Stay classy. Take personal discussions out of the public eye.

3. Responding “Copy’n’Paste” style:

I remember having repeated issues with a company I was ordering from, with boxes crushed and the goods inside damaged. Despite mentioning this was happening EVERY time I ordered, each time I contacted the company the response was as such: “We’re sorry our service didn’t meet your expectations – please supply the order number and we will re-send.” Why was this unsatisfactory? Because their response created a repeat of the same problem I initially experienced and my order still arrived damaged.

A response that does not listen; a response that does not solve the issue; is a response that will lose you a customer.

(Spoiler alert: switched providers who use a different courier – never a problem since!)

4. Responding with your tail between your legs:

Let me say this clearly – you will get some things wrong in your business, and apologies are important in those cases. However, we must stop treating every piece of feedback as if we are the big bad wolf who deserves to be huffed and puffed away (Okay, I mixed the nursery rhyme there, but you get the gist!). Sometimes, the customer is NOT right, and issuing an insincere apology to appease a customer feels shallow and fake. Be real.

5. Responding to poor reviews with lip service only:

Poor reviews are usually a result of an unsavoury interaction between your customer and your business. Don’t miss the opportunity to use feedback as a way to improve your processes – a bad review gives you the opportunity to improve. Deleting the comment, blocking it from being seen, or promising to do better but without a clear plan, does not help your business grow. The reason why the review was given will remain, and your business will continue to suffer as a result. Learn from the experience and fail forward!

If you’ve received a bad review or comment and still aren’t sure how to respond, chat with the Flair team. We’d be happy to guide you with the best response! 

Post Script – Want to read more about reviews and recommendations? See this blog post for more!