Ten years ago, one of the primary ways to connect with your customers directly was through a phone call. These days, with social media continually on the rise, more people are relying on these sites as outlets to connect with businesses. Just as you would want your team to be expedient and polite when answering the phone when it rings, the same approach should be taken with the comments and conversations happening on your social media sites, such as Facebook.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average user spends more time on Facebook—nearly an hour per day—than on any other leisure activity except watching TV and movies. This means that when a user contacts your business on Facebook, your response is vital. It’s the equivalent to answering your company’s phone line in today’s tech-savvy world. The following are some suggestions for building an ongoing dialogue with customers as part of your Facebook content marketing campaign.
Maintain a Consistently Quick Response Time
When a user comments or asks a question on your Facebook page, you should respond to it as quickly as possible. Failing to do so implies a lack of urgency and interest. In fact, Facebook will even show users how responsive you are right on your page. In order to maintain a “very responsive” icon, businesses must respond to 90 percent of messages with a median response time of five minutes.
Respond to Both Positive and Negative Comments
Should your company receive a compliment, thank the person publically and encourage them to discover other elements of your business. If the comment is negative, address it honestly and positively, and if necessary, ask for suggestions about improving the overall experience for the customer. If your business is responsible for the problem, apologize and ask for a chance to right whatever went wrong.
Stick to the Facts
When you receive a negative comment that is factually incorrect about a policy or product, politely set the record straight. Sometimes people don’t realize they’re mistaken or may have misinterpreted a situation. If left uncorrected, any misconception related to your Facebook content marketing campaign could spread and raise further questions.
Have Potential Responses Laid Out Ahead of Time
In some cases, as with a particularly acrimonious individual, any reply from you may make matters worse. Do not engage in an extended back-and-forth commentary or try to “win” a dispute. Remember, others are reading too, and subsequent impressions can be devastating to your company’s online reputation. As part of your Facebook content marketing plan, prepare some pre-planned responses that offer guidance on best practices for your team to use during heated or frustrating situations.
Interacting with customers through Facebook is an invaluable tool in today’s social media marketplace. Remember that the initial post is only the start and prepare for an ongoing and authentic dialogue with customers on the platform.