Handling your business’ interaction on social media can be a treacherous thing as you walk the fine line between good and bad interactions with customers.

These platforms give you a way to directly engage and interact with customers. Your mission is to create healthy, professional and personable customer interaction

Do’s and Don’ts of social media interaction

Many of the things on this list are really just plain common sense but read the whole list because there are some tricky aspects too.

Social Media Interaction Do’s

Respond to reviews and comments… briefly – You wanted to get on social media to directly communicate with consumers, right?

Well here is your chance. Someone is taking the time to review you or comment on your page or posts, so you should respond in kind. Good or bad.

If the post is positive, wonderful! Thank them for the kind words. If it is not positive, don’t ignore it and deleting it certainly won’t change their mind or perception of you or make the comment go away. Take the time to apologize or try and get to the bottom of their negativity.

Either way, keep your response brief. No need to blow up their computer with a short novel of response text.

Thank new followers – Ok, so I am going to put a little asterisk by this one and say it is not necessary for everyone.

However, especially early on as you are trying to grow your social media size and presence, a small personal touch can be a good thing. A short direct message expressing your gratitude can give your account some character, personality and can present a good first impression.

If you are trying to grow a community on Twitter and really impress a new follower take the time to look at their feed.  Like, share or retweet something they care about. We know that much of social media behavior is driven by ego. People share content because they want to be noticed. When you take the time to notice them, they are more likely to remember you and come back and continue to like and share your content.

Join the conversation – If someone tags you in a post, feel free to respond maybe even start a conversation. These interactions give your account some personality.

It is a healthy way to reward consumers for taking the time to give you a shout out. Your responses don’t have to be long. Keep it brief, get creative and have fun with your responses.

 

In addition to talking with consumers, try talking with other brands.

A great example of this type of interaction occurred when AMC took on social media giant Oreo.  The tweets and follow up interaction actually helped both brands.

Social Media Don’ts
Get into an internet shouting match – Let’s face it: trolls are out there. There are going to be people who will post things you do not agree with or are just trying to get a rise out of you.

Don’t let them goad you into an Amy’s Baking Company-sized meltdown.

It is important to interact, you can’t dwell on it or – worst-case scenario – let it get to you. If it is a negative review, try to find a way to remedy it.  If the product is inexpensive consider offering a second chance to try your product or service. The cost of the replacement is significantly less than the negative publicity.

In the case of large ticket items or times when you feel you weren’t in the wrong, offer them a way to connect with you directly to discuss the issues.

Do not air dirty laundry or get into any kind of back-and-forth on the internet. You will not win. This kind of thing can deal a serious blow to your image that people won’t soon forget.

Use automated social media tools sparingly –There isn’t anything wrong with scheduling tweets on services like Hootlet, but also leave some room for more personal posting. Use automation to broadcast basic, evergreen messages or during an event to remind people of the schedule.

Just be sure to check your prescheduled content if something changes. You don’t just look silly reminding people to show up at 8:00 for an event that has been cancelled, you run the risk of really turning off your fans.

And speaking of turning off fans, be very careful about tools which create automated responses to posts and new followers. These tactics usually come across as lazy or worse can seriously backfire.

Consider the case of the New England Patriots accidentally tweeting a racial slur with an automated response during a contest.

 

So, these are my top do’s and don’ts. What’s on your list?

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