How to deal with haters online as a business

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Social media is a wonderful tool for business owners. It allows you to advertise, share content and information, as well as providing a two-way conversation with consumers and customers. Yet despite all of the benefits social media affords, there is one undesirable aspect every business could face: social media haters.

While it’s true that there is no tried and true method for dealing with negative comments on your social media feed here are a few tips that might help you.

How to respond to negative comments

At the end of the day, the longer you have been in business and the more customers you service ultimately means that somebody won’t be happy. It’s the law of averages. The key lies in how you react to such remarks. Do you delete them, fire back angrily or simply turn the other cheek?

The best answer is none of the above. Experts say the optimal method businesses can employ when dealing with negative feedback is acknowledging the comment neutrally, regardless of whether you feel it was justified. By addressing these kinds of comments, you show that you care about the opinions of customers and strive to meet their needs irrespective of circumstance. Any social media conversations with haters are public, and selecting a mature response reflects well on your brand in the eyes of other users.

Developing a good set of Page Guidelines for your Facebook page       

You can set up Page Guidelines to determine how you would like people to engage with your page. Here is an example of the City of Sydney’s page guidelines. That way you can refer people to a set of rules of what you expect when they engage with your page.

Embrace apologising

Sometimes, you’ll get it wrong. Everyone does. The difference is that on social media, people will let you know about it in no uncertain terms.

Again, it’s important to keep calm and remember the attack likely isn’t personal – it’s aimed at the business. Even if a message is abusive in tone, see if the underlying message contains some truth. If that’s the case, apologise. It’s simply the easiest way to rectify a situation, and it shows that you care about your customers once more.

Head to private messaging

A great tactic for dealing with haters is responding to them privately. This method allows you to have a back and forth conversation with a user without your entire following seeing. You’ll have the chance to get your point across clearly (while remaining calm, of course), often leading haters to backtrack on their negativity in the absence of support.

Hiding, deleting and banning on Facebook

Sometimes business competitors can hijack your Facebook feed with negative comments that aren’t valid. You do have the option of addressing these comments but you can also hide or delete the comment or ban the person from your page. If you decide to hide the comment only the person who posted it and their ‘friends’ will be able to see it. Think carefully before choosing any of these options as they could create a bigger issue.

Social media is a great tool, but it’s also a public forum where people can choose to comment as they wish. It’s a good idea to encourage people to leave good comments and reviews so when and if you do receive a negative review it is counterbalanced.

If you would like to know more about setting up a good set of page guidelines for your Facebook page get in touch with us today.