In this second installment of our conversation, the team provides advice to clients who receive negative reviews or social posts, and we discuss the importance of analytics in measuring the ROI of social media strategy.
Deana LaFauci: Hi everyone! Okay, let’s play out a scenario. A restaurant receives a negative Facebook post with a complaint about the quality of their service. What do you recommend they do?
Megan Cadigan: Respond to the comment ASAP. Let them know how sorry you are and then take it offline. But make sure your response is well-thought-out and meaningful, so that future customers can see how much you care about their business and what they think.
John Leary: Yes – address the negative comment immediately. The longer you wait, the worse it looks!
Alexandra Santilli: And if you ignore the post or delete it, it will look to your customers as if you don’t care or don’t want to deal with the issue.
John: And as Megan mentioned, direct the conversation off of the public feed. Ask the customer if you can speak to them, either over the phone or in person, or in a direct message. Second, listen to their complaint. Really listen, and work with them to try and understand the situation and rectify it, if possible. A negative review online carries a lot of weight.
Alexandra: I agree – always apologize and be sympathetic, and then take the conversation out of the public eye, either via private message or phone call. Directly address how you can improve their customer experience.
Kristin Provencher: I have seen things go wrong if a business responds defensively or decides to delete the comment. Treat the concern with respect and be sure to reflect that respect in your response.
Meg McDevitt: I think that a negative review online should be dealt with the same way negative feedback would be dealt with in person. Empathize with the commenter and try to provide above-and-beyond customer service. Can you bring them back in for a better experience? Can what they complained about be changed in your restaurant’s service overall?
Alexandra: From a business standpoint, it’s important to take negative feedback into consideration and ultimately use it as a way to improve your business.
Deana: One of the focuses of the social team at Propel Marketing is to provide clients with the insight necessary to understand the metrics of a social media campaign. What’s the most important thing to understand about social metrics?
Megan: It’s constantly changing! A strategy that worked a few months ago may not work right now because of changes to the network’s algorithm. We don’t control how the networks assign weight to posts, and that’s why analytics are so important. They show you what works and what doesn’t, and allow you to readjust your strategy accordingly.
Meg: One important thing to understand is that increased stats do not happen overnight. We work with clients to discover what resonates well with their following. Can we take that certain topic or message and spin it in a different way to continue increasing fans, followers and overall engagement?
Deana: Absolutely, it’s about constantly evolving the strategy to address what works.
Meg: It may not be rocket science, but it is a science! We discover the right formula for you to be successful in your social networks and the ever-changing social network algorithms.
John: We work hard to keep up with the changes in the industry and keep you on pace with best practices for your business on Social Media.
Kristin: I think one thing to keep in mind is that it’s not all about how many Likes or followers you have, but how much interaction you are having with those followers. See what is enabling people to engage with you by looking at your metrics.
Alexandra: You never know what the next day will bring when it comes to social metrics. One day, picture-based posts are what gain the most engagement, and the next it’s just a text or link-based post. We are constantly learning and adjusting our strategies to keep up with best practices.
Kristin: Never be afraid to test out different strategies to increase your engagement!
Deana: When you start working with a client on their social media strategy, what’s the first thing you consider?
Megan: I like to find out what they want to accomplish with their social media campaign. Once you have that information, you can figure out how to customize their strategy.
Meg: Tone. The tone of voice in digital messaging can be well received or completely misconstrued when targeting the audience. I would not use the same tone for a Mexican restaurant as for a law firm!
Deana: Definitely not!
Alexandra: I also consider the type of personality the client wants. Do they want fun and playful posts or more serious, informative posts such as industry news and updates? Usually it’s important to have a mix of both, but as Meg said the client’s desired tone is very important.
John: I use the 5 W’s from my journalism background: Who, What, When, Where, Why. I put myself in the business owner’s shoes and their customers’ shoes, and work from there.
Deana: I really like that concept, John. After all, we know that the best way to write for social media is concisely. Tweets are like headlines!
Kristin: Piggybacking off what John and Megan said, I try to understand what the client wants to accomplish, and how they want to be seen by their customers.
Megan: I agree – every client is different in what they are looking to achieve.
Kristin: It’s also important to take a look at the industry, the customer, the community they are located in, what the client has already been doing, and how are people responding to it.
Deana: Sounds great to me, Kristin! Thank you all for taking the time for this roundtable!
Got more questions for the social team? Leave us a comment!