While social media can be a boon for most brands, it can also bring the ugly out of the woodworks. Unfortunately, negative comments are part of the deal when you advertise your brand on social media.
When you receive a nasty, negative, or otherwise yucky comment on social media, follow these 7 steps to ensure that you’re handling it with velvet gloves.
1. Read it once, twice and three times.
When you receive a negative comment, always make sure to remain level headed and read the comment through several times before responding.
This ensures that you do not respond out of anger or hot blood. Stay calm, cool, and collected while reading the comment. Take a break and come back to it with a fresh mind if you have to.
2. Ask someone else to read it.
If available, always ask someone else to read the comment. An outside perspective is always a great option and can keep you grounded.
3. Be professional.
When you do respond, remain professional and courteous no matter what. Adhere to your brand voice and ideals before everything else, and treat the commenter as if (s)he was standing right in front of you.
4. Provide your name and contact details.
Always provide your name and contact information, whether that be an email or a direct phone number. A disgruntled customer will always appreciate when a brand puts real faces forward when dealing with a crisis. Be real, be human and show them that you are.
5. Don’t offer freebies.
Don’t just fall back on offering freebies in response to a negative comment. Sometimes people just want to vent, and it doesn’t have anything to do with your brand or products.
So, don’t automatically offer free stuff…think of it as rewarding bad behavior.
6. Thank them for their feedback.
Whatever else, thank your commenter for their feedback. Be genuine.
If the comment stemmed from a legitimate issue, be sure to let them know that you will get to the root of the problem and contact them to let them know when it has been solved.
7. Proofread your response.
Before you hit send, always proofread your reply. There’s nothing worse than realizing that there’s a grammatical error in your response, or that you sound far too harsh. If available, ask someone to proofread your response also. It never hurts to have a second pair of eyes on it.
Receiving negative comments can suck, but if handled correctly they can turn a detractor into an advocate. Honestly, it works. Being truthful and genuine with your audience is the surest way to their hearts. Using these 7 simple steps to approaching and dealing with negative comments can help you get more insight into your customers and be seen as transparent.
5 Reasons Why Snapchat is the Perfect Choice for Your Brand
The logistics of using Snapchat for business are wildly different than other social media channels but no less effective. Although choosing a social media platform for your brand is often a process, making Snapchat part of your marketing plan is a no-brainer. Here are 5 reasons why Snapchat is the perfect choice for your brand marketing.
1. The Engagement is Nothing to Sniff At
The basic Snapchat functions essentially force user engagement with content. Although “force” is a naughty word, it still works. And it kicks ass.
Snapchat is a photo platform that allows users to send “snaps” that will only last between 1-10 seconds once the recipient opens the image. This goes a long, long way in providing juicy calls-to-action to your user base when they’re on the go.
Because the user must interact with the snap once it’s been opened, it requires them to either save the snap or be within a short vicinity of your location. For example, if you’re a local restaurant or cafe your snap could offer a coupon for a free muffin or a discount on a meal.
2. Lack of “Community” Can Be A Good Thing
When we say “lack of community”, we only mean that your Snapchat viewers will not be interacting with you in such a way that requires tons of maintenance or monitoring.
Because it is strictly image based, you won’t be required to monitor and approve comments or reviews on the Snapchat forum. However, you will most likely see users snapping about their experience.
3. Casual is How We Do
Since its inception, Snapchat has been viewed as and used as the casual social media app. Even if your primary audience happens to be big business execs, the functionality of Snapchat allows them to be casual. Which in turn, allows you to be casual.
Snapchat is a lot of things, but stuffy or boring are not part of that list.
4. Let Your Brand Personality Shine
Because of the casual atmosphere that Snapchat exudes, the users are able to let their personality shine through in every single snap. That goes for brands too.
Snap a video of one of your employees being a super-goof, or snap a photo of a company luncheon. There’s no limit to the amount of personality that you can pack into a single snap. Show your audience exactly who you are, and who you want to be.
5. Awesome Examples of Super Snaps
Although Snapchat is viewed as a simplistic social format, there are no end to the amazing things that you can do with a snap.
No matter which industry you’re in, Snapchat has something for you!
Offer limited time coupons.
Provide new product sneak peeks that are exclusive to your following.
Show your followers what you’re doing through event videos and photos.
A scavenger hunt is a unique way to engage your customers via Snaps. Just make sure that the end prize is awesome.
Share your company culture through videos and photos of your employees being themselves.
Show that you believe in community through Snaps of your company getting involved.
A Brief Overview On How to Choose the Best Social Media Channel for Your Business
As a business owner or manager, you’re probably being constantly inundated with social media on every level. But you aren’t quite sure if social media is right for you and your brand, right? Well, social media is a godsend for most businesses, regardless of the industry. So, in an effort to help you understand your options we put together this comprehensive guide on how to choose the best social media channel for your business.
The big players in the game are always a good choice, but not all social channels are created equal.
Facebook Most internet activities begin and end with Facebook. It’s a simple fact. If a website offers a login feature, chances are very good that you’ll be given the option to log in with your Facebook credentials. Considering this, most businesses are well served by choosing to participate in Facebook.
However, Facebook is most known for conversations and if you’re not using it for such, then you’re wasting your time. Whether you’re a service-based business or retail, you can easily utilize Facebook to build a strong community of brand advocates.
Facebook is for you if: you have the manpower and resources to produce regular, engaging content and are able to monitor your network often. Facebook is not a set it and forget it option and requires a posting frequency of at least once a day.
Twitter Everyone is on Twitter. Seriously, people take to Twitter to talk about their lives in short bursts more than anywhere else. Everyone from brands to celebrities maintain busy accounts and garner tons of attention. But, Twitter is not right for everyone.
With a strict 140-character limit Twitter is often disregarded by brands because they don’t feel like they can get their point across. A lot can be said in 140-characters, but that isn’t the true drawback of Twitter.
The one real problem with Twitter is the visible lifetime of a post. In order to stay in front of your audience, a brand must post several times a day or risk falling off the face of the internet. However, Twitter has long been known to produce real leads and true purchasing drive in an audience.
Twitter is right for you if: you have a dedicated social media person/team that is capable of posting several times a day and interacting with the audience.
Google+ Ok, so….Google owns the world. So, if you don’t have a Google+ account bad things might happen. Kidding, not kidding.
The real deal is that Google takes businesses with an optimized Google+ account into consideration when determining local search rankings. So, every business really MUST have a Google+ account setup and optimized.
The search engine also pays attention to and factors in your Google+ post content. So, if you can manage a Facebook or Twitter account, then all you need is a dash of imagination to maintain a solid Google+ account. Just remember that post content should not be directly copied from another social account, it should be varied enough not to trigger duplicate content warnings.
Google+ is always right for you.
Pinterest Just keep pinning! Pinterest is an internet worm-hole, literally. But, it is an amazing option for retail businesses. Pinterest currently has nearly 73 million users as of April of 2015, which makes it one of the most viable social media channels out there.
Plus, Pinterest is talking about adding a Buy It button to pins to allow users to purchase items that they love right on Pinterest. This is HUGE for retail businesses on Pinterest.
Pinterest is right for you if: you’re a retail business and are capable of creating unique, eye-catching imagery for your product.
LinkedIn LinkedIn is a tricky social platform, always has been. But it doesn’t have to be.
Think of LinkedIn as an alternative blog platform that is aimed at tech-savvy professionals. It gives you the unique opportunity to appeal to people that are just like you and are looking for what you have. Get into the conversation with other like-minded professionals while positioning yourself as a thought leader in your niche.
LinkedIn is great for B2B service-based businesses or for talent searching. Plain and simple.
LinkedIn is right for you if: you’re a service-based B2B business with lots to say. You should have the capacity to create semi-regular long form content and be engaged in other conversations.
YouTube Video is the name of the game these days and considering the fact that Google now owns YouTube, it’s always a solid choice. But, not everyone does well on film….10 extra pounds and all.
But seriously, producing branded videos for a social platform such as YouTube (or Vimeo) isn’t for the faint of heart. Being a video personality requires a certain type of person, tons of dedication and something really great to say.
YouTube is right for you if: you have a dedicated video production person or team that will be able to produce, edit and optimize regular posts for your brand. Plus, you’ll need an interesting person to be the face of your social videos.
In Conclusion… There are lots of great social options and none of them are created equal. But when it comes to choosing the right social media channels for your business, always take your resources into account. Think about:
• The size of your social media marketing team. • The regularity of posting that you can manage. • The type of content that your customers want to see. • Where your customers spend their time.
I’m sure you’ve all heard that content is king, and it kinda is. Well, rather the context of said content currently reigns supreme.
(This article goes for each and every presence on the internet, whether it be your company website, Facebook or your blog. Cover your bases everywhere you have carved out a corner.)
Writing for the web is no longer about how many keywords you can jam into a 100 word paragraph. It’s about how you can speak to your readers on a truly personal level. Instead of pushing your brand or your product on your visitors until they collapse, try giving them something that they want.
Sharing your experiences with them.
Ask them what they think or want..
Invite them to participate in something that you have going on.
Play fun games with them.
Treating them like people and not profit.
People love feeling like they’re a part of something, hence creating a community.
Your Community Isn’t About You
It isn’t, so don’t make it all about you. Giving back to your community isn’t just about charities and volunteer work, it’s about putting a part of yourself into what you’re doing. Hell, give it your all if you’re feeling frisky. Just don’t half-ass it, you’ll regret it in the end.
Make your visitors feel included. As I mentioned above, they like feeling like they’re part of something. Don’t alienate them with pushy advertising or snarky customer service. Give them what they crave.
Oh, and did I mention that acting like a human being is a hell of a lot easier than trying to be a fake company figurehead? Truely. It’s always easier to be yourself than someone else.
Your brand is all about people. Show them that and you’ll create a strong community that will be your biggest supporters for free.