Social media is 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Its Always On! While this can be extremely beneficial for brands it also means that constant monitoring must take place in order to keep up an image that is respectable and consistent with the brand message.
This article in marketingmag.com.au told the story of a little boy who visited the Qantas Facebook page to enter a competition. However, he was instead greeted with a pornographic image left on the page from a few hours earlier. First of all shows how important is it to be monitoring social media pages 24 hours a day and a secondly it is a clear example of something that needs to be removed before it is seen by customers.
This sort of content can have devastating effects on a brands image and reputation, moreover because of the fact it is on social media it can also spread very quickly causing far greater damage that word of mouth ever could.
It’s not easy monitoring and controlling an online space for a number of reasons:
- People can post what they want, when they want and as often as they want
- It can be hard to locate inappropriate, demeaning and/or false content
- It can be hard to know what to leave up and what needs to be taken down
Complaints are constantly made on brands social media pages by customers. “Your service was horrible”, “I will never shop with you again” and simply “you suck!” are all too common on the pages or large and small companies. But there are also often important issues that need to be addressed in these complaints and it’s a good opportunity to help resolve certain issues immediately before customers become increasingly upset.
So where do these companies draw the line on social media? What is acceptable?
I think it is important for brands to recognise and respond to customer complaints in a timely fashion but at the same time some things posted simply needed to be removed immediately.
A social media page should be treated by brands as the same as a ‘bricks and water’ store. The store needs to be staffed the entire time in order to respond to complaints and issues, and in order to keep customers happy, while also monitoring the online space for inappropriate content that needs to be deleted.
Things that should be deleted are:
- Comments that are obviously false or misleading
- Comments that degrade the brand for no reason, such as “you suck!”
- Inappropriate material, such as swearing in comments and pornographic images that are posted
However customer complaints in general should NOT be removed.
Constructive comments should be addressed immediately and dealt with as they would be in a normal store. By leaving comments on the page other customers can see that the staff are helpful and prepared to answer questions and address issues.
I’m sure many of you have friends who have posted complaints on Facebook to various brand, or you yourself have posted complaints about a product or service and often,the larger brand who are concerned about customer service will reply and resolve the issue.
Here is an image taken from this website that depicts how customers respond to brands ignoring complaints on Facebook.
So a few tips would be to:
- Keep a close eye on the content being posted on your page
- Have someone check the page for content that needs to be deleted or responded to at least every hour
- Be respectful when responding to customers complaints, no matter how rude they may be