If there are ever complaints made about a business or service, one could certainly count on it being published on social media. While it takes years to build up a good reputable brand name and that reputation can quickly be threatened thanks to the immediacy and reach that social media has. In this article, we will go over a couple of ways on how to protect your business’s reputation online and prevent the threat of future damage to that reputation.

When Problems Arise, Provide Real-Time Updates

Inevitably, there are always going to be problems that come up – either technical difficulties or unfortunate events that pertain to your business or services. The first place many customers will go to is social media to complain to their friends. If problems aren’t addressed right when they happen, it can cause a customer to lose trust. When problems arise, it’s important for businesses to handle it immediately and inform customers about the issues at hand. Give calm, timely updates until the issue is resolved.

Transparency Helps

Customers know that sometimes stuff hits the fan; it happens to all of us, even businesses. The best way to handle an issue, a complaint, or a bad review is to handle it as openly and honestly as possible. Acknowledge it and take the next steps to resolve it. The more open the communication is between you and your customers, the greater the chance trust and respect can be salvaged and rebuilt moving forward.

Offer Solutions, Not Defensiveness

As a person, the natural reaction when we’re being attacked, either verbally or physically, is to fight back. Defensiveness has a highly adverse effect when it comes to communication, especially to customers. There should never be any arguing on a social media page. Instead, businesses should focus on providing a solution (how do we move forward from this?). If the customer is continuing the conversation online, agree to discuss it further with them via email or phone instead. Always avoid argument, especially on social media sites.

Be Ready for the Future

Anyone at anytime can attack a business’s reputation. While you can’t control what other say on social media, there are ways to prepare and take preventative action. Make sure to handle any issues in a prompt, positive, and professional manner. Have an answer sheet ready for your employees to use and take advantage of reputation management dashboards that send you real-time updates as problems arise. By taking more control over the situation, this will protect your business and prevent any and all future damage.