We all know about the downside to social media and constantly tell ourselves to be careful about what we make public to the world. “Once it’s out there, you can’t take it back.” This is, unfortunately, true. In this digital and very connected world, everyone has to be aware of repercussions from items and displays shared online.
Businesses are no exception to this rule, social media can be a fantastic tool for growing your customer base, but it can also damage your reputation if something negative is spread on the Internet about you. We will talk about how business owners can go viral in a good or wrong way.
Let’s start with the positive, shall we?
Having your business’s popularity online takeoff is an amazing accomplishment, especially if you are an early-stage company. If your business goes viral, you want to establish the next connection for your business. Make sure you have some new resources and links ready to go once you step forward in your business growth.
You can keep the momentum going to have content and products for customer consumption ready, maintain the company's interest, and attract new customers. You can do this through various ad campaigns and social media, provide your new connections with content to keep them coming back for more.
Be sure to optimize your content, so if people try to search for it again, they will find what you want them to. If they're going to show it to their friends and family but can’t find you, then you’re missing out on potential customers.
Now, onto the negative side of going viral.
If you have a broad audience base for your company’s social media, you can reach many customers when you release new content, but that can backfire quickly if you aren’t careful with what you are releasing. There’s no way to avoid those incidents altogether, but you can take steps to prevent them and handle them if they happen.
- Don’t feed the flames. Bad reviews are part of the Internet, and you can’t please everyone. How you respond to it when it happens can make it go away quickly or make it even worse.
- Marketing takeaway. Even though you can’t please all your customers, if someone is vocal about their displeasure online, try to take the conversation with them offline and out of the public view.
- Take responsibility. Whether you are the offender or being perceived as the offender, then take responsibility immediately. When these things happen, the public will expect some kind of response, and it is your job to provide it. Get ahead of the narrative while the opportunity exists.
- Set up procedures. Your employees should have a standard for interacting with customers to serve them better and prevent unpleasant encounters. But just in case an unhappy customer makes a scene, have some kind of procedure for your employees to follow to solve the issue better.
It is not easy to control how you will become a topic of discussion online, but if you are proactive in your online presence and have fail-safes in place to help you when something goes wrong. It is possible to maintain a positive presence on the Internet, but don’t get caught off guard if the conversation takes an adverse turn, flip it around.