Social media isn't all fun and follower gathering, sometimes you're going to get a bad comment or backlash for your posts. What do you do to handle negative comments? First, don't ignore them! Treat any negative feedback as an opportunity to show your social media following just how stellar your customer service is. They should be handled as swiftly and politely as possible, while you try to resolve the problem. Did someone complain one of your products didn't work properly? Ask them how and why and offer to replace it. If your social media following sees that you can field negative comments, it will build your reputation and your credibility. Above all else, remember that how you respond is recorded for all the internet to see. If you lose your temper and lash out on Facebook or Twitter, your moment of weakness will forever be there for future leads and followers to see. Conversely, if you handle a situation with grace it will also be there for future leads and followers to see.
Negative comments can also be part of "hot" issues, and can help draw readers to your site. Sometimes problems in an industry become popular subjects for internet content, and rather than avoiding uncomfortable subjects you should see them as an opportunity. As much as we would like all the internet chatter about ourselves to be positive, that is rarely the case. So when the "hot" issue is a negative, address it head on. If one of your products has been recalled, blog about how you are facilitating the recall, how you are working to support your customers, where they can contact you for information, ect. Let your followers see that you can proactively handle problems, that you are committed to supporting them and improving their experience, and that you are reliable during the bad times as well as the good. Swiftly and decisively handling a problem can improve your credibility and turn a bad situation into an opportunity to grow business.
Being part of the conversation in your industry can help you spot the negative trending issues and negative comments. Responding swiftly and decisively can help you weather the storms and come out ahead.