This week in #bufferchat, we explored using social media for customer feedback with Mandy Yoh of Review Trackers! In the discussion, we talked about why we share feedback with the products/services we use, the best ways to collect and utilize feedback, and strategies for responding to all kinds of feedback!

Catch our weekly Twitter chat, #bufferchat, at TWO times every Wednesday for valuable industry insights and networking with nearly 400 other smart marketers and community managers. Same topic, same place, just at different times – feel free to join in to whichever chat time works best for you!

For our community in Asia and Australia (or anyone in other timezones that like this time the best!): 4 pm AEST (Sydney time, UTC+10).

For our community in North/South America, Europe and Africa (or others!): 9 am PT (California time).

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Q1: How has social media impacted customer feedback experiences?

From Mandy:

  • “It has created a community that truly trusts our brand. One that feels confident in our ability to get them what they need.”

From the community:

  • “Social media created a bidirectional channel for customers, gave them a voice. Now brands can easily track feedback & listen.” @Typ0Queen
  • “Being able to get real-time feedback from our users is just amazing. If managed right, it can be really a powerful tool.” @Chris_Keller
  • “Social media allows customers to give you feedback 24/7 & it has definitely highered the expectations of good service.” @lifeofaworkgirl
  • “It lets us react much more quickly to bad customer experiences, sometimes turn things around before it’s too late.” @Lauchlin
  • “Social media has forced brands to rethink, be active and give more importance to customer feedback.” @manpreet1011

See all the great answers to question 1 here!

Q2: What inspires you to share feedback about the products/services you use?

From Mandy:

  • “83% of shoppers look to & when making a purchasing decision, I trust my peers & they trust me”
  • “The idea that I can help co’s to understand and help define the better they all desire for their customers”

From the community:

  • “Personal interactions inspire me. “Above + beyond” actions make me feel cared about.” @heidilauren
  • “If I like a company and am interested in seeing them succeed – I will send them feedback.” @ksschout
  • “When the company is open to it and wants to listen.” @rouxroamer
  • “I’m usually inspired to leave feedback when the service is either phenomenal or terrible. Pretty simple.” @christensen143
  • “I share things that provoke emotion. Am I so sad and want ppl to help? Am I laughing hysterically and want other people to?” @lafitara

See all the great answers to question 2 here!

Q3: How can you encourage users to leave feedback? 

From Mandy:

  • “Leaving feedback is an emotional experience, seek out a positive emotional connection with your audience”
  • “Include visual marketing CTA’s to leave feedback or w. links to your social channels or review site listing”

From the community:

  • “We have weekly questions that allow our customers to share. That feedback later turns into content/product ideas.” @cindymedran0
  • “Simple – Make it easy for them to do. People give feedback if it is a frictionless, quick, easy task. So many cos miss this.” @ideakid88
  • “Engage your community! Don’t just reply when there is a problem but be a part of their day to day life.” @danielleirogers
  • “Let the voice of the customer speak and show genuine appreciation for whatever they have to say. And: just ask!” @migsbassig
  • “Another way is to show you act on feedback. Customers love knowing they helped you change something.” @kymberlaine

See all the great answers to question 3 here!

Q4: How do you use social channels to collect customer feedback?

From Mandy:

  • “We use it as an opportunity to create positive relationships.”
  • “We use as a communication propeller that encourages engagement & knowledge sharing”

From the community:

  • “Twitter polls have been fun to collect feedback. You can add some fun responses in there and get your audience to vote!” @winniegiang
  • “Social channels vary but I set up alerts on google or use listening tools like to make sure I’m listening intently.” @briansparker
  • “Local Facebook groups were used to create a community and provide platforms for sharing feedback.” @nikolaskohl
  • “Listen everywhere! Facebook posts, comments, tweets, private messages, DMs… you can learn a lot from your audience!” @TheMikeyDunn
  • “We use our communities for discussions, focus groups, and to provide feedback.”  @Toby_Metcalf

See all the great answers to question 4 here!

Q5: How do you use feedback once you receive it from your customers/users? 

From Mandy:

  • “Handle the feedback head on. Leaving feedback is an emotional experience, responding requires timeliness & finesse”
  • “We use to build positive relationships, it’s a chance to delight them again/reverse a negative experience”

From the community:

  • “We use it in any number of ways, but more importantly we always let the customer know how we’re following up.” @samigrady
  • “Take it back to the team, analyze it, see what you can do to solve or improve. always thank and always do something about it.” @laura_bauman
  • “I know I use this word during almost every #bufferchat, but if it’s an overwhelming opinion then you should adapt your strategy.” @NatashaWest_
  • “Feedback helps us tell our clients what resonates w/prospective audiences. To some extent, it should guide your hand.” @MarkonBrands
  • “This bit is crucial. If customers don’t see their feedback taken seriously – they won’t bother.” @RoselynXavier

See all the great answers to question 5 here!

Q6: What are strategies for responding to negative customer feedback on social media?

From Mandy:

  • “Stray from indifference & personalize your response. Focus on each individual relationship.”
  • “Be confident in your delivery & provide relevant clarifications on the issues the customer is bringing forth.”
  • “Maintain the same priorities to show empathy – use words/phrases similar to the ones used in their feedback.”

From the community:

  • “Validating a persons feelings (“I see why that would be frustrating! Let’s see what I can do.”) can do wonders.” @michemakeswords
  • “Be empathetic, validate their experience, and help them find a fix sooner rather than later!” @OlyviaMedia
  • “Acknowledge, show appreciation. Discuss w/team and test. Customers = a priority. Show them that. & don’t rule out any ideas.” @sarahtaqvi
  • “Reply promptly, and make your reply clear and open. Your reaction towards negative comments is also a way to show you care.” @bybelleyu
  • “Immediately apologize, be confident in response that you CAN fix the problem. Speak like a person, not a company. 🙂 @chelsierosatone

See all the great answers to question 6 here!

Q7: Share your most enjoyable experience you’ve had when you shared feedback with a company!

From Mandy:

  • “Southwest is everything: Timely, put your priorities first, anticipate your needs & provide exceptional reactive”

From the community:

  • stickers definitely 🙂 and when brands speak directly to me and offers me a smile, kind words or a special treats.” @ZalkaB
  • “I love when any company takes time to respond — @AlaskaAir is the best at this! They ❤️ all my wing pics!” @Thekneil
  • “I got free kettle corn for a year when I blogged about how delicious the vendor made it!” @migsbassig
  • “I reached out to an airline about a bad travel experience and got travel vouchers. Definitely a + outcome for me and family.” @AnnisaTangreen
  • “Happened to my cousin. Zappos found out my aunt had died and sent her flowers. No idea how.” @GreenStreetData

See all the great answers to question 7 here! 

Thank you so much to Mandy for sharing her awesome insights and to everyone who participated in this awesome chat!

Catch #bufferchat each Wednesday at 9 am PST, 12 pm EST, 5 pm GMT **OR** at 4 pm AEST (Sydney time, UTC+10). Join our new Slack community with over 1,000 members to continue these awesome conversations all week long!

Do you have any comments or answers to these questions? Leave your thoughts in the comments! We’d love to hear from you!

Image sources: UnSplash

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Written by Arielle Tannenbaum

Community Strategist at Buffer. In addition to her love of community building, Arielle also loves vegetables, cooking, practicing yoga, meditating, living mindfully, and exploring the connections between health and happiness!