It’s pretty obvious that consumers tend to give their feedbacks, especially if it’s a rant or complaint, thru social media rather than telling it directly to the brand or service provider. Why? Because for them, it’s safer and easier this way. After all, they are behind the safety net of their smartphones or computers. On the other hand, brands have much to lose with complaints on social media. In one survey, researchers discovered that online users read more than 1 million customer-related tweets every single week. Among them, 80 percent are critical and/or negative.

When it comes to social media complaints, it is important to note that whatever you post can and will be used against you in the digital arena. Irate customers can screenshot any unusual response from the customer service support team and make it viral in a matter of hours. These can make or break your brand in a matter of days.

If you would like to improve the way your team handles complaints on social media, you have to be familiar with different types of customers who post negative feedbacks online. Know more about these 4 types of social media complainers and how to deal with them.

1. The Know-it-All Customer

This is the type of customer who has read all the product reviews and descriptions and has already compared your product(s) to others. This customer also reads blogs about your product(s), and perhaps, asked friends who already bought or availed your service. This is the kind who walks into your store armed with knowledge but still asks the staff what the product is just to validate what he/she already knows.

When this type of person posts a complaint online, it is usually the type that gets a number of attention because it seems the company is caught off guard.

How to Deal: If ever you receive a negative review from this kind of customer, acknowledge the problem. A sincere apology usually helps pacify the well-informed customer followed by an acknowledgment of their expertise about your product(s) or service. It is necessary to address complaints as soon as possible, especially from an irate online user.

Another guaranteed way to pacify an informed customer is to provide them with more information about the product that is not readily available online. This way, the customer will feel like you are adding to his knowledge database.

2. The Highly Aggressive Customer

This type is perhaps the most feared among customer support staff because this person is highly aggressive on voicing out his complaints. This type of customer also does not accept excuses especially when he knows that the company is at fault.

In social media, this type often recruits friends and even strangers to his cause. The online complaints could be a short or longer, but both can be damaging to a brand’s online reputation if not addressed in a timely manner.

How to Deal: The best way to handle this type of irate customer is to prevent any type of confrontation. There are cases when customers just want to vent out. Other times, they want the brands also to lash out online, which could damage reputation with a single post.

Preparing your customer support representatives to deal with this kind of customer is a must. First, thank the customer for sharing his/her feedback. Second, allow the customer to vent and share his opinion. Third, acknowledge the problem and give assurance that his/her concern is being dealt with.

3. The Freeloader/Rip-Off Customer

This type of customer is monetizing on the impression that brands will do everything to avoid bad press. They communicate with the brand through social media with the clear intention of getting freebies. And when brands reply in an off manner, they share the private conversation to their friends, hope to make it viral, and coerce the brand into giving in.

How to Deal: The key is to respond objectively with the cool façade of how professional the brand can be. By responding in the most objective way, most freeloading customers back off immediately knowing that their tactic has failed. However, some freeloading customers do connect with brands with the hope of connecting them to charities.

In cases like these, do analyze if the brand is in the position of lending a hand. After all, generosity goes a long way.

4. The Won’t-Wait Customer

Normally, this type of customer transitions into the Highly Aggressive Customer if his complaints are not addressed in a timely manner. With so many brands angling for the biggest share of the consumer pool, customers know they are spoiled for choice.

And with social media, customers demand brands to address their complaints immediately. They don’t want to wait weeks or days. Rather, they expect the brand to fix their problems in a matter of hours, minutes even.

How to Deal: The first thing you need to do is issue an apology through the public post. Next, it is important to veer the discussion away from the public. Encourage the user to converse with you in a private message, especially when asking for private information that could help solve the problem.

Pacify an irate customer through an apology and giving assurance that the issue is being solved. It is important not to blame any managerial or staff shortcoming that could spark bad publicity about your business.

When dealing with various types of online customer complaints, remember the three As namely Ask, Apologize, and Assist. Get all the details you need to get a clear idea of the problem. Then, acknowledge and apologize for the mishap. Finally, do everything you can to assist the customer in solving the problem away from the public’s eye.

This entry was posted by Publication Editor on Wednesday, January 4, 2017 at 6:31:29 AM and is filed under Mixellaneous.

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