With social media so prevalent in real estate marketing today, it might not be uncommon for an agent to correspond regularly, or at least to start, with leads and clients on their favorite platforms. While it shouldn’t ever replace the good old fashioned phone or in-person meeting, you might find times where you absolutely have to communicate with someone through Facebook, Twitter or a public review site like Yelp.
When would a good time be? When you get negative reviews or comments that everyone can see. As you work hard to promote your business, your services, yourself as positively as possible through social media and other online sites you may have to do some quick PR management – and we recommend you do! Here are three steps that can help you manage your online reputation when you receive negative agent reviews.
Listen and Monitor
You might have a set-it-and-forget-it mentality when it comes to your Facebook page, for example. But it’s imperative that you pay close attention to what others are posting on your page. Facebook has fast become a means for people to express frustration, air their issues and demand something for poor service from businesses, especially local ones.
Make sure you set your settings to receive notifications whenever someone leaves a private message, posts on your page or adds a review. You might also set a Google alert for your name and business name so you can find reviews or comments about your business on other online properties. This is the fastest way to know when someone leaves a comment and to help you act accordingly.
Pay Attention to the Message
We often blindly follow “the customer is always right,” but sometimes that just isn’t the case. Read the message or complaint and understand exactly what the complaint is about. If the person is not justified in their comments, then don’t be afraid to call them out – diplomatically. You have every right to protect your reputation and to let your own voice be heard. If you want an example of what we’re talking about, check out this Mashable article (it’ll make you smile!).
Turn Complaints into Content
As Bill Gates once said, “Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.” It’s a bummer to have a bad experience with a customer and to have it splayed across the Internet or by word of mouth. But don’t let that get you down. Turn that lemon of a complaint into lemonade! First, analyze the situation and determine how you can improve your services for future clients. You can also use the complaint as a topic for your blog, social media and upcoming newsletter. You don’t have to go into great detail about what happened, but you could focus on the misunderstanding or situation in a positive way. If someone complains about how you didn’t communicate often enough for their taste (and you somewhat agree), then develop a new communication plan then share that with your leads and clients.