How to: Handling Unhappy Customers via. Social Media

Let’s be honest with ourselves for a moment. How many times have you been let down by a company in the past? Were you ignored in a store? Were you treated rudely? Was the new item you ordered online defective?

The ease of venting our stress and frustration towards a company is great for the mental health; however, it’s not so great for business owners trying to gather positive reviews instead of negative ones.

We’ve all had our good and bad experiences with companies. Truth be told, no one (or company) is perfect.

However, now we have the chance to voice our opinions loud and clear using the Internet as our outlet.

Lately, a majority of the venting is being channels over social media sites. Twitter, Facebook and even Instagram have been employed for customers to report their bad experiences. How these businesses respond over these social media applications could either make or break their brand because the exchange is going to be read by millions of other users.

A Few Tips to Remember when Responding to Upset Customers via. Social Media:

  • Find your Inner Zen: Reading the slander and negativity about your company may hurt. However, before you respond to these customers, make sure you let go of the mirror-like response that you may be feeling. Instead, remove yourself from the keyboard and take a break before responding back to the post.
  • Apology: Let the customer know that you feel regret for their negative experience. This shows empathy towards their situation. Place yourself in their shoes. Question if you would feel any better about the injustice that was done to them, if it happened to you. Feeling sorry is part of reconciliation between the company and the customer.
  • Know when to request Privacy: If you know that you could help resolve an issue, then ask the customer to message you privately so that you may handle the matter accordingly. Don’t upset them any further by asking for their information out in the open for all to see.
  • Keep Alert: If you have several people come forward with the same issue, then take note of that situation and rectify it. The great thing about having access to these social media platforms is the ability to rapidly grasp the issues and fix them before current or potential customers are impacted.


Always keep in mind that no two people are alike and it’s quite difficult to please every person. Knowing how to handle situations involving disgruntled customers takes time and plenty of practice. Don’t get discouraged.