Did someone leave a negative comment on your business blog? Don’t fret. It happens to all bloggers – whether their blog is personal or for business. Negative comments are an unavoidable aspect of blogging. It can be stressful at times, but with these guidelines you’ll know what to do the next time you receive a negative comment.

Have a moderation system in place.  When you moderate incoming comments, you can control what gets published on your blog.  This eliminates the presence of spam and unnecessary negativity on your blog.

Don’t take it personally.
When you receive a negative comment on your business blog, don’t take it personally. After all, there could be many different reasons that motivated a reader to write a negative comment.  If they’re constructive, let the negative comments be a learning experience for your company. Having a positive attitude towards it can be a great help.

Take some time out and clear your mind.
Walk the dog, watch television, listen to music, do anything you want; just don’t reply on that negative comment yet. Clear your mind first. Anger can’t solve anything. Engaging someone in a debate, if done out of irrational emotions, might ruin your company’s reputation.

Analyze the comment.
What made the reader post the comment? Maybe you unintentionally wrote something that made the reader upset. Whatever it is, evaluate your blog entry. Understand what the comment is saying. Don’t disregard it; its point might be valid. The comment might be something that can help the company in the long run.

Ask questions.
If you want a more detailed explanation for a valid negative comment, you can contact the commenter via their personal email address (if they placed it on the comment form), or in public.  Knowing more about the complaint might help your company find the solution. Asking the right questions shows that you are sincere on trying to find the best way to work things out. By inquiring, you will learn about the problem from their point of view. You will also find out more about the problem this way.

Pay no attention to trolls.
Sometimes, a negative reader’s aim is to provoke you into a fight. They would post senseless negative comments that they can’t back up with logic. These comments should just be ignored, or better yet – deleted. But exercise proper caution when deleting comments. You might delete legitimate comments that can anger the one who posted it.

Off topic comments should not be ignored.

Occasionally clients need to air out their complaint but can’t find the right forum for it. Negative comments could be about another topic not related to the blog entry. Deal with the issue at hand.

Learn from the experience.
Read it, understand it and learn from it. Negative comments can be constructive. Your company could have made a mistake and overlooked it. Negative comments can tell you what went wrong. Be professional in dealing with them and response respectfully. And when the company is at fault, admit it. Nobody’s perfect. Be thankful to those who pointed out the errors. There’s no such thing as bad publicity, only bad losers.

Originally posted on December 15, 2007 @ 4:03 pm


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