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Protect Your Reputation: 7 Ways to Stomp on Social Media Trolls

Posted on: Tuesday, May 3rd, 2016

Social Media Trolls

In marketing, reputation is everything. The way that a business presents itself to its customers, as well as to other businesses, will determine not only how many clients it attracts in the short term but whether they will stay in the long term. As a result, a business knows that one small change in its reputation can have a big impact. One thing that causes this kind of change is the activity of Internet, or social media trolls, which can quickly jeopardize a business’s good name with a few simple actions.

Social media trolls, which have grown in both scope and sophistication as the Internet has developed over the decades, are commonly known as individuals who intentionally try to provoke others online, typically by leaving inflammatory or offensive comments on social media channels. Their goal is to make others feel angry and upset. Trolls get a kick out of the reaction that offended individuals have to the things that they say, and as a result, the more offensive they are, the more they will continue to provoke.

So how are these trolls damaging to your business’s social media channels? Not only do they get your clients angry (and thus less likely to return to your company), but they also give your business a bad reputation by making it appear as if you have a rude and offensive client base. Thankfully, there are steps you can take to deal with Internet trolls and preserve your image. Here are seven tips for how your company can combat these trolls on your social media pages appropriately:

  1. Listen. You want to make sure that the person is actually an Internet troll rather than a legitimately upset customer.
  1. Ignore them. Some trolls will go away if they don’t sense that you are going to give them the kind of emotional response that they crave.
  1. Correct mistakes. Respond to flagrantly incorrect statements with facts that restore your reputation as a respectable business.
  1. Use humor. Like ignoring the troll, this will deprive them of the angry response that they want, but it will also smooth over the comment and make your business look better.
  1. Block or ban. If the trolling activity is severe and persistent, block the commenter; however, don’t overuse this, as you run the risk of losing customers.
  1. Unmask the troll. One of the reasons trolls are so confident is because of their anonymity, so reveal something about the troll to diminish their credibility, therefore, making them less likely to comment on your posts.
  1. Build a community. Encourage your online followers to be kind and understanding, and they will filter out trolls on their own.

We can’t always prevent malicious posting from social media trolls, but understanding how to react appropriately to these attacks can keep your business’s good name intact. Stay true to your business’s core values and don’t respond impulsively, the positive posts on your channels will outweigh the negative ones.

Has your business’s reputation been jeopardized by negative reviews or social media trolls? What was your strategy for dealing with this sticky situation? We would love to hear from you, so post your experiences in the box below, and be sure to contact Batya Maman for additional help with improving your overall brand through social media marketing!

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