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Social Media

Bad Facebook Review Etiquette for Businesses

by Kristen Baumert
on February 22, 2016

Dealing with Bad Facebook ReviewsCustomer service is so important these days. If your business isn't giving good customer service to your guests, then you can probably expect a few complaints. Sometimes, these complaints are visible in public places, such as social media. So what do you do when someone puts one of those bad reviews on your Facebook page?

The Customer is Always Right

Even though a bad review is disappointing to see as a business owner, the best way to deal with it is to read over it and take action immediately. What you don't want to do is get defensive. Arguing with your customer on social media is a big N-O. Nobody likes to see an employee or manager arguing that they were right and the customer is wrong. That is a huge indication to me that you don't really care about what your customer's point of view is or that they have a pleasant experience at your business. Remember, this is what new customers will see when they visit your Facebook page. What I want to see when I visit a business Facebook page is that even with a bad review, the issue was resolved in an appropriate amount of time and that the end result was a mended relationship with that customer. 

What Steps to Take:

When you see that a customer has left a bad review, the best way to deal with it is to comment directly on the review. First and foremost, apologize. Then ask them to message you privately so that you can discuss the matter at hand. When they reach out to you to explain their side of the story, you can decide what plan of action to take that will rectify the situation. The likelihood of someone coming back to your business after that is far greater than ignoring the problem altogether. 

Who should respond? If you don't have a dedicated person to do your social media, it's probably best if a manager responds to the issue. When employees are responding to a bad review it can look a little tacky, especially if they aren't being professional. The last thing you need is an employee scaring away potential customers.

Should you ask them to delete the review? My opinion is no. As a business owner, that is up to you, but when I look at the reviews, I like to see how they resolved the issue. A great company will be able to respond with grace and fix the problem. I would also recomment thanking the customer directly on the review as well so that the public knows the issue was handled and the customer is now happy again.

Consider giving the customer a reason to come back to your business. Offer them a coupon, discount, or free visit so that they can come back and have a better experience. This will show the angry customer that you really do appreciate them and want their business, and they will likely give you a better review next time.

Let your fans do the talking. Sometimes, your fans will take action for you. Be sure to thank them for sticking up for your business in an appropriate manner. You don't want to make it seem like you don't care about the original person bringing the issue to the table. 

It's ok to change the look of your business page too. If you've recently made some changes that customers are having a hard time adjusting to, there may be a lot of bad reviews coming your way. Responding to these is always important, but you may not want that to be the first thing they see when they visit your page. Do this by going to the top menu of your business page.  Where it says "more" choose manage tabs and move them around accordingly.  

Sometimes, however, fixing the problem may not happen. There are some customers you just can't satisfy. If they become obnoxious and don't give you the time of day to even make ammends, it may be time to block the customer and delete the review. It's not advised to ever delete a review, unless they have a deeper motive.

Learn From Your Mistakes

Bad Facebook reviews don't have to be a burden. Use them in a positive manner to show the strengths and character of your business. These reviews are out there for the world to see, so make the best of them and respond with great care. If you are noticing more and more bad reviews vs. good ones, then maybe you need to address these issues directly with your employees.

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Kristen Baumert
Kristen is a HubSpot certified marketing consultant specializing in social media. She has a BA from Ball State where she studied art, English, and journalism. Her true passion is social media marketing.
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