The speed at which information travels on the web is such that powerful players can be made and unmade in the blink of an eye. Savvy blogging tactics and clever social media maneuvers can help boost the reputation of an upcoming business just as easily as it can ruin an established one. Such is the dangerous world of perpetual online commentary. I’d like to take some time to walk you through the process of dealing with negative feedback you might encounter in the blogosphere, whether it’s through a nasty comment on your blog or a toxic tweet aimed at your business’s services.
Face Negative Feedback Head-On
Proactivity is the key to dealing with negativity in the blogosphere. In other words, take steps to address your detractors as soon as you see that negative comment pop up under a post, or notice that offending tweet in your feed. There’s no use in closing the window out and pretending like you didn’t see a negative comment—it’s there, and worst of all it’s there for everyone else to see. The longer you wait to respond to someone’s comments or to retweet them, the longer your readers will have to mediate on the offending comments and wonder if the commenter has it right.
Keep The Conversation Constructive
It should go without saying that you must maintain a professional and even cordial tone when you’re responding to negative comments, but some bloggers and webmasters just don’t get it. Some negative comments happen for a reason, and you might actually learn something by having a reasonable, constructive conversation with the person who wrote it. When responding, address the commenter by their name, look for some positive to agree with them on, and clearly explain your position on the offending issue. If the person ends up being an insensitive jerk who just wants to cause trouble, you’ll look better for attempting to take a civil tone with him. If they’re a normal person, then you’ll both have a nice conversation.
Consider Why You’re Receiving Negative Comments
It’s one thing to receive the occasional disagreeing comment from your readers, but it’s quite another matter when you regularly receive complaints and negative feedback about your services. If you notice a common thread between a host of negative responses, take the time to reflect on the state of your web presence. If you’re running a blog, take stock of your recent posts: what is the tone of your writing? Have you been writing on subjects outside of your usual niche? Have you been neglecting your duties as a blogger? If you’re running an online service or operating a small business, you might want to seriously reconsider your enterprise’s direction if you get nothing but bad reviews. It’s best to address these problems as early as possible.
Don’t Take It Personally
Whatever the comments may be, try to remind yourself that these naysayers aren’t taking target at you. Even if they hurl insults at you, there’s no reason to take offense to them. To do so would be to please the trolls and pranksters of the web with your sensitivity to criticism, and this would make you an even bigger target for subsequent negative press. These people only know you through your web presence, so to treat negative comments like a personal attack would be a grave mistake. Treat negativity in the blogosphere with the grace and patience of someone experienced in public relations and you’ll be just fine.
How do you deal with negativity from your customers?
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