When you decide to advertise on Facebook, it comes with PR perks, and the occasional drawback; in particular, negative Facebook ad comments.
First, a refresher on the benefits of Facebook advertising: Facebook is a social platform that allows for two way conversation, which means you can interact with the public and share your voice, and it can be highly beneficial in terms of increasing your online brand presence, generating leads, and gaining new customers. But on the other hand, there is the odd chance that you could leave yourself open to unwanted Facebook ad comments.
Through Facebook, you can share your new products and services, deals, blogs, bring users back to your website, and convince them to buy. Facebook can really help boost your sales and build brand relationships. However, you will also need to have a process of dealing with the possibilities of negative comments. This is where public relations tactics come into play.
Whether you have hundreds or thousands of Facebook followers, you’re bound to get at least one cranky person, that will make it clear that he or she is not having a good day. It’s not completely uncommon to receive negative comments on Facebook ads. However, you should not treat it lightly, but with care – or else your reaction can unintentionally impact your brand.
But don’t worry, there are several ways to deal with any negativity, to alleviate the impact and make sure it’s not repeated. Let’s explore the different methods to moderate Facebook ads comments.
Dealing with negative Facebook ad comments effectively
How to deal with negative Facebook ad comments is a common topic, and you are far from being the only one in this situation.
Before I show you the different methods of handling Facebook ad comments, you should know that there is unfortunately no universal answer, but there are certainly principles to help you turn negative experiences into positive, and in the process you can even build your brand. After all, it’s not always all bad to have a negative comment on your Facebook ads. Why, you may ask? Because it can give an opportunity to showcase your commitment to high-quality digital customer service, social media engagement, and your professionalism.
1. Preparation is the key
Responding to Facebook ad comments may require strategy and some preparation. If you don’t spend time thinking of a way to deal with it, it could get time consuming. Why? As you won’t be able to treat all situations the same way. Each circumstance should be approached in a customised and personalised manner. There are also a lot of different variables, such as the type of company you are, and the issue being discussed etc., so there’s no blanket answer.
Sure, you could delete, hide, or ignore all of the bad comments. However, is it always the best move? Not really – with social media being a two-way conversation, people expect to be able to engage with you “socially”, to enter into a conversation in which they are heard and listened to. Negative feedback can even be a chance to learn and improve – imagine if you had a negative experience with a brand and felt dismissed – and deleting negative Facebook comments can backfire on your reputation.
Here are a few examples where other methods could be better:
– Responding in a humane, and compassionate way, could win over your cranky user.- Answering valid complaints with useful information, and staying professional, can make you look good in front of other users.
– When someone is clearly upset and needs customer care, don’t lose the customer. Rather, take a more personal tact, offline for some one-on-one grooming.
Other times, there is just no other solution. Especially, when it is becoming too distracting, or things start to affect how other users interact with your brand.
Following what I just explained, there are several other ways to deal with negativity. Let me expand on this a little more.
2. Approach the conversation with a light touch
There have been a lot of discussions on how to address negativity. Should you take it with a pinch of salt, and let some negative comments on social media fly, going with the approach “bad press is still press”? Or alternatively, take it much more seriously, and take down every single negative comment?
Here too, the answer is not always easy, but often lies somewhere in the middle.The general consensus is that you should approach it with a “light touch”.
Remember that Facebook, as well as other social media channels, serve as a public forum where various individuals express their different opinions. And yes, sometimes someone is just set to take you down. But be very careful with deleting Facebook ad comments, or banning the user from your business page entirely in cases of ‘professional trolls’.
Let’s explore the different methods to actually proactively manage your negative Facebook ad comments. Aside from getting rid of a post, or a user all together – there are less “direct” methods.
3. Let’s keep this private
If you feel like the complaint is serious enough that it could make you lose this customer, it may be worth your while talking to this customer privately, or linking them to a customer care agent. Let the person know on Facebook that you will reach out to him or her right away, to try and fix the situation. This is the best tact, if things can’t be addressed or resolved online; and it will show the user (and other users) that you engage with your customers and manage complaints professionally. This is crucial.
Lastly, if the negative comments on social media are not hurting your brand, and are not really worth your time, you can always choose to just ignore them. But a polite response in some form, either on or offline is always the best policy, so readers know things have been addressed and that your digital presence is a customer service forum where they will be listened to. Be proactive!
4. Strike back with a great response
Sometimes, an upset user just needs more information about a specific problem, or even a little bit of attention from you. By responding to some negative Facebook ad comments, you may be able to turn a bad situation into a good one. Give an explanation, or a small discount to make up for the anger. Such thoughtfulness goes a long way, and the user will appreciate it.
Moreover, managing complaints with a professional response, can always earn you points when other users see it. Your response, or lack of reply, displays your customer service skills.
I know responding to negative comments on social media can be time consuming. Some companies have invested in hiring an outsider, whose job is to respond to both positive and negative comments. They know that by doing so, they will probably retain customers, and gain new ones. Public relations tactics should always be used, and the person authorised to make decisions that should improve the situation. For example, a small sentence like the image below, can go a long way!
5. Disable Facebook page tagging
If one of your posts is already getting a bit of negativity, you don’t want it to reach further than your Facebook followers. Facebook lets you easily disable the tagging option, to make sure no one else sees your post, other than your Facebook followers.
Again, this depends on the circumstances, or the decision-makers within your management. But if so, how do you do it?
Go to your Business Manager, click “Settings” and then select “Tagging Ability”. Check or uncheck the box that states “allow other people to tag photos or videos published by [your business page name]” and hit save changes.
However, even if your users can’t tag anyone, sometimes their comments on your Facebook ads are just too negative or unreasonable to stay published. In this case, you can always remove the comment – either by hiding or deleting it. Especially if the material is “spam”, this can create legal implications (seek professional advice where needed), threatening, or offensive in nature. Online bullying can create further issues, so nip such circumstances in the bud. Let’s explore how to take that next step.
6. Delete or hide comments when they’re too negative
If you see a specific comment on your Facebook ad that is unrelated, and could really seem to hurt your brand, or drive other users away from your page, you could also remove the comment.
You must be wondering what the difference between deleting and hiding is? Well, when you delete a comment, you remove that content permanently. When you hide a comment on the other hand, you can always undo it, if needed. Both options will hide your content from the rest of the users.
So, how exactly can you delete or hide a comment on Facebook? It’s simple: scroll to the comment on your business page, or click on “Notifications” on top of your business page and select “Comments” on the left. Once you have found the comment that you want to delete or hide, click on the little arrow icon, on the right side of the comment. Click on “hide”. From there, you can decide if you only want to hide the comment, or delete it completely. At this stage, you will also be able to ban the user from your page (we’ll show you how to ban users next), or report them if warranted. Especially, when it comes to inappropriate content that could be deemed offensive to the wider public.
But before deleting Facebook ad comments, you can often solve the problem by talking to the user one-on-one, in a private conversation – as outlined in the prior suggestions. Particularly, if there is a legitimate case at hand.
However, if all else has failed, the picture below shows you how to hide a negative comment. This is available as a last resort, if you wish to do so.
7. Sometimes, ignoring is the only method
If you have a strong brand presence, and if you have a lot of Facebook followers, one negative comment won’t hurt your brand. The chances of the other users listening or caring about this comment is very small.
Plus, if you have built brand loyalty and trust in the heart of your other consumers (more insight on that here: The Secret Sauce to Building Brand Love), one of them could even come to your company’s rescue without you having to intervene (depending on the situation). Often Facebook is a medium where others may provide their guidance and recommendations to resolve things too – but the reverse can also apply. So, speedy response is key.
However, don’t let negative comments take over your page before you start reacting. If you don’t have a strong presence online yet, you may want to be stricter when it comes to ignoring negative comments on Facebook. Ignorance may not be bliss.
8. Exclude the negative terms you definitely don’t need
This is a great method to save you time, and automatically getting rid of negative Facebook ads comments you definitely don’t need, and can’t do anything about. This is especially useful for those who try to cross-promote themselves on your posts, or insert spam.
To add the keywords you want to ban, go back to your settings (top right of your page), click on “page moderation” and type the keywords you want to ban, separated by commas. You can always go back and add more, if you feel the need. However, this reduces the likelihood of offensive wording.
9. It’s hard to say goodbye: banning users from your page
Sometimes, you will encounter users, who clearly have something against you, and are ready to beat you down with negativity. I recognise two such types:
– Those who are very vocal: they take the opportunity to comment on more than one new Facebook ad.
– Those who don’t comment as often, but when they do, it is inflammatory content that will make you wonder if they are truly mad.
You can hide or delete their comments. But if all other options have been exhausted, there may be no other way to deal with it than to ban them all together from your business page. However, there must be due cause.
How do you ban someone from your Facebook page? Well, there are two ways you can ban a user. First, if you have previously hidden one of their comments, you will have the “ban” link option appear under the hidden comment. If you click it, it will ban that user. The second method to ban someone is to go to your settings. (You should see the “settings” button on the top right of your page, under your “messages”, “friend requests” and “notifications” icons.) Click on the “people and other pages” option. Select the person you want to ban, click on the little gear box on the right, next to the “search” box, and select “ban from page”. However, this method should be approached carefully, and all prior steps should have been trialled first, before taking such a stance.
The picture below, shows you how you can ban someone from your page. Nevertheless, keep in mind that this is a serious move.
It’s also worth noting that blocking and banning a user on Facebook are not one and the same; blocking a user from your personal Facebook in your capacity as an owner of a business page will not ban them from your page. It only means that you won’t be able to see what they’re commenting on your page! In tech terms, “blocking” is generally used in the context of stopping another user from contacting you, while “banning” prevents them from accessing something (in this case, your business page).
Managing bad comments on social media is all part of the online game. Unfortunately, it’s something that all brands and businesses will likely have to deal with at some point. And it is safe to say, that you are far from being the only one dealing with this.
There is no universal right or wrong answer on how to manage negative comments on Facebook ads. However, the methods mentioned above, should help you understand what to do depending on the severity of the comment. If you think you can fix it, mitigate damage, and even gain new customers, then try to respond. Otherwise, you can always hide the comment until you seek appropriate advise on how to respond. If some of the users are going a bit too far, at worst you could attempt to use one of the more extreme methods, such as reporting or banning from your business page entirely – but only if it’s warranted.
No matter what, you are now better equipped to manage the comments on your Facebook ads, as you have options to consider. So, keep on posting and stay focused on the bigger picture of building that brand loyalty and new leads.