Social media can give brands that human element, a personality and real time interaction with customers. Generally all brands will experience some sort of negative feedback from disgruntled customers at some stage. The fact is that if you have social media for your business you need to be equipped with a plan and strategy that will help you turn negatives into positives.

Most complaints are from customers looking for answers and social media gives you the opportunity to show the customer (and the rest of the community) the brands customer service skills. If you respond quickly and provide the customer detailed steps you are taking to rectify the situation, not only can you retain that one customer you are more likely to show the whole community that your brand cares! Possibly the worst thing your business can do is to ignore and/or delete the post. Having said that, if a particular customer is being vulgar and offending others in the community it is best to ban or remove them from the page.

A lot can be said for the old saying “the customer is always right.” In most cases a simple apology will go a long way in turning things around. If your customer has had a bad experience it is best not to engage them in a blame game and instead offer a simple apology and a solution for remedying the situation. Never offer discounts publicly as it may make your brand vulnerable to further attacks. Instead offer them to contact you privately via an email address or phone number where you can diffuse the situation. Once you have resolved the problem post a positive comment on the original that states, “We are glad we were able to resolve the problem.” Letting others in the community following the posts know that the problem has been resolved.

If you deal with the problem positively and professionally your other fans will most likely with come to your aid and reinforce their good experiences.