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Social Media Marketing: Handle Cynical Consumers

Just look at any social media outlet and one can see how simple it is to reach out to millions of people worldwide. There are plenty of advantages to using any kind of outlet to reach people, but there are always those who seem to be dissatisfied right from the start.

They are the cynics of the world – and they can be some of the best marketing opportunities a social media outlet can offer. This article will show how Facebook can be used as a social media marketing tool that generates interest from some of the biggest skeptics (and their friends – after all, it is “social” media marketing).

Facebook & The Cynical Consumer

Some consumers are cynical and skeptical, and no matter what a company does, they are not going to change their minds and suddenly “love” a business, even if that business offers them free items, discounts, or other premiums. They’ll just take their free stuff and continue to complain about said company. But they’re not the real target here.

The real target are the true skeptics – the ones who change their minds when presented with evidence of a company’s “personality.” Social media marketing skills can help change minds and place a positive spin on the company.

A Cynical Showdown

When using social media marketing, the company may be confronted by those who have had a negative experience with the company, and they will go ahead and say so right on the company’s Facebook page.

There are three things a company can do when this happens:

1.      The company can delete the comment, inciting ire on the part of the already disgruntled consumer. This is risky, as said consumer may go to his or her own page and say whatever they please about the company, generating bad press – especially if that information is spread to friends, and friends of friends.

2.      The company can address the comment by defending its position (such as re-stating their refund policy, or putting the onus on the consumer for the problem). It’s obvious that this is the least desirable choice, as it makes the business look like a bully. Others are keen to observe how a company handles its customers who aren’t exactly satisfied.

3.      The company can address the comment by stating they are sorry the customer has experienced frustration, and encourage the customer to contact them via email or phone to resolve the issue to their satisfaction. They can follow up with the consumer via Facebook message, offering a coupon or other premium to help alleviate the customer’s prior frustration.

Reviewing the options, it seems fairly clear which one is the best choice. Option number three can help demonstrate how the company is responsible, cares for its consumers, and does everything in its power to keep customers happy.

It’s a real advantage to use social media marketing, and even some of the biggest cynics can be persuaded to become a fan of a company once they see the company’s “human” side.

 

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Adam Vandergang

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