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Responding to negative comments on Twitter has become something of an art for brands. In many cases, the best response is to move the conversation offline where the underlying issue can be addressed privately. Other times, it makes sense to apologize or address the issue in full view. What’s important to remember is that your response is a reflection of your brand’s personality. Each interaction is an opportunity to inject a bit of humanity into the equation and develop a deeper relationship with your customers. Here are some examples of brands that nailed it.
An endless number of jokes can be made about the Smart Car, making Twitter monitoring a challenge for the PR team. In an effort to cement their image as an irreverent, fun-loving brand, they adopted a “humor our haters” approach. They really show that they aren’t afraid to play along by turning an insult into an opportunity to have a little fun.
The next day, @adtothebone blogged about it, calling it the "best social media response ever." In less than three days, Smart Car generated over 22 million impressions and increased their Twitter mentions by 2,200%. Organic searches for "tridion safety cell" spiked 333%.
Sainsbury’s is the second largest chain of supermarkets in the United Kingdom. They handled this Tweet about a tasteless chicken sandwich from their deli beautifully:
Later, another Sainsbury's corporate account replied to the tweet with a phone number for Jones to call, saying it was sorry he " had to wrestle your way through the sandwich."
Sometimes it’s other brands that are knocking yours on Twitter. Not cool. Here’s how Taco Bell responded to getting trolled by Old Spice.
Grand West Casino
Sometimes the best answer is a little self-deprecating humor. The Grand West Casino did a great job of this after being called out for a grammar crime.
These kinds of responses aren’t right for every brand, of course, but they do demonstrate that with the right touch, you can turn a negative mention around. Finding these opportunities requires active social media monitoring and an active imagination.