Guest blog 1 from Tandem Studios: Managing your online reputation

Dave Dunlay, Managing Director and Content Producer, Tandem Studios

The online world moves quickly. Before we are aware of it, reputational damage may already have been done. Many businesses are afraid of negative comments being online – and that’s the reason why they don’t want to be involved with social media. But engaging with your customers online can be a really powerful way to deliver excellent customer service.

If an issue pops up in a social media forum such as Facebook it’s important to:

  • quickly acknowledge the complaint or problem,
  • deal with the issue quickly,
  • communicate the resolution of the complaint,

All in the same forum where the initial complaint was made.

Online complaint resolution provides a lasting example of how you took the issue seriously and dealt with it. Many organisations follow the first two steps but take the conversation offline in order to resolve the complaint. Unfortunately that means nobody knows what a great job you’ve done!

Here are five ways to use social media to deliver great customer service.

  1. Respond and resolve issues transparently.
  2. Provide information e.g. ‘how to’ demonstrations or seminars.
  3. Offer customer rewards through giveaways.
  4. Get constant feedback from customers.
  5. Provide regular, timely updates on your company or organisation.

Nature abhors a vacuum and so does the online world. If you don’t respond or occupy the online space someone else will do it for you.

Do you own the domain names associated with your organisation?

Are there unofficial social media pages set up by your employees or members of the public that look like they represent your company or organisation?

To avoid a nasty online surprise, it’s important that all your staff members, volunteers etc…understand how and where they should comment online and that they understand the difference between commenting as your representatives and as private individuals – for some roles there is no distinction. In order to clearly communicate this it’s often useful to have a simple policy that everyone knows about.

Here is a great website that has dozens of polices on social media use from small and large companies around the world: http://socialmediagovernance.com/policies.php.

If you have a question about social media or content marketing email me at dave@tandemstudios.co.nz

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