Negative Feedback on Social Media?

Yep, I got cursed out on Twitter… once more!

Let me tell you, it wasn’t NOT fun to read that tweet, and thought it wasn’t exactly directed towards me, (it was meant for one of my clients) as the account manager, I take negative feedback  on social media VERY seriously.

So, what the heck should you do when a disgruntled customer leaves you a nasty message on social media?  Trust me, although most of us would rather rush to hit that big fat ”delete” button, or simply pretend like it’s not even there, that’s actually THE WORST thing you could possibly do.  

Your customers want to be heard, ignoring or deleting their feedback sends the message that you simply don’t care.  -Tweet This! 

You DON’t want to risk the customer noticing you deleted their negative feedback.  Trust me, if they do, things might get even more compicated.

”Kim, you don’t get it.  It’s so unfair!  They’re lying.  That’s not the real version of the story…”

I get it. I REALLY do.  Over time I’ve had to deal with my good share of negative feedback on social media and though a lot of these claims might be overly dramatic and sometimes untrue, there’s a little secret weapon I always use to turn an ugly customer into a raving, brand-lovin’, social media advocate!

Yes, you read it right. There IS a way to turn negative feedback into outstanding reviews.  How do I know?  Because I’ve used this strategy over and over again on social media… and it works!  So, before you jump the gun and hit that ‘delete’ button or turn your head the other way, check out these 3 steps to turn negative feedback on social media into great reviews.


3 Steps To Dealing With It

1. Don’t take it personal: Most social media rants stem from real issues.  They may be over dramatized, over exaggerated and completely blown out of proportion at times, but they are more than likely triggered by an expectation that was not met.  Turn this into a real opportunity to show the world the quality of your customer service and take notes, this may be a free way to make your products or services even better!  Put your emotions aside and focus on solving the issue.

2. Hear them out:  Hiding from negative feedback is the WORSE thing you could possibly do.  Even if the complaint is untrue, choosing to ignore it sends out the message that you do not care and makes other people doubt your brand.   Make it a point to respond kindly no matter how ugly the situation may be.  Toss all un-kind or defensive language.   This is your chance to show your people that you care.

3. Take It Offline: It’s better to be safe than sorry!  Once you acknowledge a customer’s complaint, go ahead and invite them to continue the conversation via email or hop on the phone with them to hear them out.  They’ll appreciate the attention and this will help contain a potential rant. 

4. Fix it: Present a simple solution.  While most of the complaints my clients receive are pretty outlandish and out or their control, we always try to provide a simple solution.  Surprisingly,  most customers actually reply with a product or service recommendation. 

Let me give you a quick example of how to respond to negative feedback on social media (Disclaimer: This company and users are completely made up, this is 100% a metaphorical scenario). 

Erika: “I bought this gorgeous tote bag from Jen’s Bags and the handle broke 2 hrs later. Ugh!  NEVER BUYING FROM THEM AGAIN! #lameproduct”


Jen’s Bags:  ”Hey, Erika. I’m SO sorry to hear you purchased a defective product.  I’d like to make it up to you by letting you choose ANY bag  from our limited-edition collection.  If you send us an email with your favorite design and address to, we’ll over night it for  you today for FREE! Plus, we’ll include a 40% discount coupon on your next purchase (promise NO more broken handles).  Again, we’re SO sorry about the inconvenience, hope you’ll give us a second chance.


Erika: “Oh  my gosh you guys are awesome!!! Thanks, I’ll send you my info right away! #bestcustomerservice #lovejensbags”


2 days later….


Erika: “Just got my limited-edition bag from Jen’s Bag and I’m in love… They are simply amazing!! Kara & Claire, we’re going shopping for more bags at Jen’s this weekend!!!!”


Jen’s Bags: “Glad you like it, Erika! Super excited to have you this weekend! #bestcustomerever”

Of course, not every situation will end in “happily-ever-after” but if you stick to these strategies you’re more likely to turn any rant that heads your way into a raving review! 

Now, it’s your turn! How do YOU deal with negative feedback? Do you agree with this strategy? Speak your mind in the comments below, I’d love to hear your opinion.

much love, Kim



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