How to Handle Negativity on Social Media / by Emma McKenzie

Emma McKenzie – ME Social Media Contributor

Social media is a wonderful way to get your business noticed. It acts as a powerful tool to engage and connect with current and future customers. It can also increase your website traffic and brand awareness. However, with great power comes great responsibility.

In order to stay on track with your social media pages, you should be posting relevant and engaging content to your followers. Oh, you’re already doing this? Great!

But do you know how to handle negative comments on your posts?

We have compiled some do’s and don’ts for tackling negativity on social media.



Deleting or ignoring a complaint on social media is possibly the worst thing you can do. Have you ever thought if you don’t reply to a comment, maybe it will just go away? Well, reality is it won’t. Just like if a customer was complaining in store or on the phone. If anything, the customer will get angrier! Your business needs to recognise complaints and handle them in an appropriate manner. If not, you run the risk of generating more negativity and losing customers over problems that could have been resolved by simply responding to them.

Respond Negatively


Responding in a negative manner to an already angry customer is a big mistake. Take for instance the example on the right. This customer has spent time and money on a meal they are disappointed in. The customer has voiced their disappointment on the restaurant’s Facebook page where, to the customers dismay, has received a rude response. We don’t think this customer is going to make a repurchase any time soon! Criticism can be hard to take, but at the end of the day if your customers don’t like your products/services they aren’t going to pay for them. Remember, your comments are not only seen by the complaining customer but your other followers as well.


Respond Positively & Offer a Solution

Responding to a negative comment in a positive way is a great start to getting back on the customers good side. Obviously, the customer has a sense of loyalty to your business because they have purchased from you and followed your social media pages. However, they have had an unsatisfying experience and want to be heard. This is your chance to regain the customers trust. Read their comment carefully, apologise sincerely, offer them a solution, and offer an option to discuss the problem further. By dealing with complaints appropriately, unhappy customers can use word of mouth to tell others how professionally your business handled their issue. Ultimately, this works in your favour as you have increased brand loyalty and trust because your customers are satisfied with the resolution.

The long and short of it is, customers complain. With the social media world expanding, now more than ever, you can expect to see an increase in customer comments on your pages. The way you handle these comments should be important to your business. Social media gives you the opportunity to show current and future customers how great your customer service is. So, prove it!

How do you think businesses should deal with negativity on social media? Share your thoughts below.