Top 5 Ways to Avoid Making a Rookie Social Media Mistake

January 10, 2015


Since starting in the marketing department here at SheerID, I spend a lot of time on social media, keeping tabs on everything going and communicating with others. While I find it fascinating to watch what’s trending, I have also found it interesting to watch how most companies are trying to make a presence within the social media world in order to better understand and communicate with their customers. While most companies have figured out the ropes of social media, we can’t help but remember some of the major social media fails. Yeah, it might seem pretty obvious that you shouldn’t tweet something highly offensive, but there are many other rules to social media that can be easy to overlook and can end up needed some damage control as well. Here are some tips on how to keep your company from making some rookie social media mistakes.

Be timely – One of the great things about social media is that we literally have access to it 24/7, there is never a dull moment. But that also means that if you have an account it needs to be maintained. Always be aware of who is communicating with you through social media and make sure to respond in a timely manner. Not responding on time gives a bad impression and could potentially resurrect a resolved issue, reminding a customer of a bad experience.

Be attentive – Since customers are wanting to be heard, no matter what the situation, try to avoid getting defensive. Instead use phrases that help make customers feel like they are heard like, “I understand,” “I appreciate your patience,” or “thank you for alerting us.”

Be careful – Even though customers may be bashing a product or recent news, does not give you the right to do the same. Be careful of what conversations you engage in and make sure to stay away from comments on gender, race, religion, or anything that could be considered defamatory. Comments like this will get you into hot water, so just avoid it all together.

Be proactive – Use social media to boost the customer experience. If a customer tweets their excitement about your new product they bought, tweet back. Customers will not only be impressed that a company went out of their way to talk to them but it also gives them another reason to continue to shop with your company. I recently tweeted something about a purchase I made from Nordstrom, and Nordstrom replied with “Great choice, we hope you love it as much as we do!” I was shocked that a huge company like Nordstrom would take the time to respond, but thought it was so great that they did!

Be honest – Every company can say that they have had a run-in with a customer taking their anger with your store to the online community so that everyone will know about their experience. Whether or not the comment is the truth, NEVER delete what they have said to make it appear as though they never said it. Customers know when you delete things, especially if it was a negative review – deleting will just make it into even more of a big deal. Use a negative comment as a chance to give a sincere response to the customer, in turn making your company appear transparent which also helps to build relationships.

So next time your posting to your Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google +, or whatever other social media site your company may be on, keep these 5 tips in the back of your mind – it could save you from making rookie social media mistakes.

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