The online world offers its own set of advantages and disadvantages. While it renders a wonderful platform for interacting with a huge audience at one go, it also makes the company exposed to criticism and bad publicity. However, one should bear in mind, that irrespective of the size of the organization, there will be a time that it would have to face online attacks and negative reviews. Expert PR pros suggest companies to participate in these conversations and make the customers aware about their value and intent. Listed below are 7 ways of dealing with online attacks and complaints:
1. It is imperative to find the root cause of the complaint. Empathy and compassion in these situations evoke feelings of trust within customers. It exhibits an impression that the company does care about its customers and their sentiments.
2. At times, the source of such bad publicity may be a former employee or a contemporary rival, who only wishes to create some trouble or get attention from the public. In these circumstances, the organization may resort to legal remedies for dealing with such trouble makers.
3. Instead of being defensive, one should try to be altruistic, pleasant, and helpful. Most of the times, such conduct of behavior solves the issue. A malicious intent may further aggravate the problem.
4. In today’s era of cut-throat competition, the digital office can never really close its doors. It is of paramount importance to respond quickly to a complaint made by a customer, before it gets too big or difficult to handle.
5. Once it has been determined that it is a genuine complaint, it is best to own one’s mistakes. This also helps in letting the consumers know that the organization takes feedbacks seriously. Further, it is also essential to keep up the promises made during the crisis situation.
6. No matter how tempting it may feel to delete a controversial post, it is always advisable to refrain from such activities. One should remember that once a statement has been written on the internet, it stays forever. If the public notices that the organization has been deleting posts, it gives wrong signals of ethics and integrity.
7. The organization may devise an internal policy for handling social media criticism. It should ensure that each member of the company has understood the wordings of the policy.
The crux of the matter is that one should try to remain human in these crisis situations. By being transparent about one’s flaws, a company can garner more trust and loyalty amongst its community. It is best to prep oneself with tactics to defuse attacks and move ahead with confidence to explore new possibilities in the online realm.