You’ve worked hard to develop your social media following, and now, an upset customer, through a short, 2-sentence complaint, has threatened it. This is common nowadays as social media gives customers an outlet to directly speak with your business when problems arise. But that doesn’t mean you need to be afraid to develop your social strategy and following because now people have another outlet to speak out. Instead, tackle negative feedback head-on!
Before you start responding, though, take time to think about what the customer said. Don’t immediately jump in with a counter-attack or overly apologetic message. Instead, use the information they provided to help you come up with a response. Are they stuck with how to operate the particular equipment they purchased? Did your team member not provide quality customer service while they were at the dealership? Are they offering constructive criticism that you can use to adjust a process? Understanding why they are upset and what they hope to gain from reaching out via social media, will help you know what you are dealing with and prepare yourself to respond.
Now, use some of these tactics to really turn that negative feedback into positive social media.
- Go over the top to please your customers. Going the extra mile for those that provide feedback can potentially lead to free publicity and social sharing. For example, if someone is upset because their tractor stopped working unexpectedly as soon as the warranty expired, and they leave a comment on your Facebook page, offer to extend their warranty with your dealership to cover parts and service requests through your dealership. It may cost you some, but the free publicity you will receive will outweigh any costs. Plus, you have probably created a lifetime customer, who will continue to come back for any other needs your dealership can supply to them.
- Show that you are making a change. Is something continuing to come up with your customers? It’s a great idea to apologize, but after a while, people are going to want to see what it is you are doing to correct it. Try sharing the steps you are taking to make a change and the progress you are having on it through a blog post or multiple social media postings. Another thing you can do is ask the customer to come into your dealership to receive a complimentary test drive of the latest machines before anyone else has. Then, take the time to talk to them about the steps you are taking to remedy the situation while they are at the dealership with you. Don’t forget to take their picture and share it.
- Check in with them. After solving the problem, do you know what makes that customer even more pleased? Checking back in on them in a few days. Take to social media to reach back out to the customer to see how things are going. This shows that you haven’t forgotten about them and care about them as a long-term customer. It also allows you to publicly show that you haven’t left their complaint hanging.
The next time you are faced with negative feedback on your social media pages, don’t freak out! Remember to evaluate the type of complainer they are, and then use some of the above steps to turn their experience into a positive one, both for the customer and also for your brand.
What are some of the tactics you have used to change negative feedback into good social? We would love to hear from you!