One of the greatest opportunities sites like YouTube offer to brands is the ability to interact with their audience. The comments section on videos and channels allows viewers to engage in conversation with each other and with you—if you do your part. It’s a great chance to answer questions about your brand, talk more about your value proposition and draw fans farther into your sales pipeline.
Of course, while leaving the comments turned on for your video opens the door to a lot of great conversation and praise, that door is also open to anyone who has anything bad to say about your company or product. As soon as the negative comments begin, many brands slam the door in the faces of their critics. DON’T make this mistake.
When people criticize your brand or organization on your own social media channels, it gives you the opportunity to respond. As soon as you shut down that conversation, it moves elsewhere—to channels you can’t control. Instead of seeing complaints on your Facebook wall where you can easily monitor and respond to them, you may end up with brand-bashing spread all across the web.
So when someone launches into a diatribe in the comments section about the faulty product you sold them, don’t delete the post or turn off commenting altogether. The former will instantly create an even angrier critic, the latter cuts off valuable conversation. Either let it alone (every brand picks up a negative comment here and there—it looks odd if every review glows) or address the user’s concerns. This is a great opportunity to prove that you excel at customer service and fix any real problem that may be going on.
Of course, if you decide to address the person’s concerns, make sure you give the job to someone with tact and some customer service experience. The last thing you need is for one of your well-intentioned employees to exacerbate the problem by getting into a debate or giving bad information. (This is one job Epipheo never gives to Chuck Norris.) Make sure to admit when you’re at fault, and even thank the user for bringing the issue to your attention. The goal here should be to both help this particular user and make sure that anyone reading the exchange can see that your brand cares about its customers.
There are occasions when it’s best to remove posts from a YouTube video. For example, we remove comments when users start bashing each other or other groups of people, or if language is super offensive. But for the most part, it’s best to avoid taking on a censorship role. Let the conversation be open and honest, and pour on the customer service awesomesauce when at all possible.