So you’ve been blogging for a while, giving your readers juicy bits of info and engaging, entertaining prose. Working diligently to build your followers and community on your business site.
You’re feeling pretty good about all this. You’ve developed your voice of authority. You’re clients come to you to see what you think. It’s going great!
Hey, this blogging stuff really does work!
Then you get that first negative comment.
Oh oh! WordPress has notified you that you’ve got a new comment awaiting approval. You’re excited because, hey!, it doesn’t look like spam! It’s a real comment so let’s go approve it.
Wait a minute! This commenter is telling you you’re ideas are wrong, or maybe they’re expressing disappointment in your products, services or your blogged thoughts.
Okay, better delete that negative comment quickly, right? Wrong, let it go through.
The best ways to address a negative blog comment is:
- Approve the comment
- Respond in a positive way
- Never respond in a negative, argumentative voice
- Respond in a helpful way
- Politely correct the commenter if they are misinformed
- Politely refer to facts that back you up
- Make things right for this person if they’re a dissatisfied customer with a legitimate complaint…
…and above all…
Always Be the Bigger Person
Always take the high road. Be gracious. Don’t argue or get petty. Don’t name call or do anything that is just going to steer the conversation into an argument and drag you both (especially you) down in the mud.
Why let the comment go through at all?
Your blog is just one place for this person to express their views. If they tried to come to you first but you shut them down without being heard, that may just “inspire” them to go somewhere else to start talking about you, and you’ll have very little control at that point.
It will show your followers/clients/customers how you deal with complaints, opposing view points, criticism, and bullies, etc…. It gives you a fantastic opportunity to look like someone who handles things well, believes in what they are doing, and can take valid criticism in a gracious, mature fashion. That can turn this situation from a negative into a blessing!
How About You?
Have you had to deal with this kind of situation? I’d love to hear about it! Share your experiences in the comments.