Social Media Management Must-Have: Reactive Communication Overview

Social Media Management Must-Have: Reactive Communication Overview

By Lisa GulasyApr 11 /2013


Since part of my job includes managing social media accounts for clients, between the hours of 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. (and let’s be honest, after hours, too), my right hand is glued to my smartphone and my left to my laptop in anticipation of social media alerts. I do this because I believe timely social media response represents a profitable and often untapped opportunity to build positive relationships with current and potential customers.

The conversations I engage in are most often pleasant exchanges, like a potential lead complimenting the company on an excellent shared piece of content, but occasionally, they’re negative, instigative or inappropriate. (See an example in real time! Check out Verizon’s Facebook page.)

While these types of comments make my job as a social media manager a tad unpleasant, they don’t fluster me because I have Reactive Communication Overviews for each of our clients here at Kuno.

What is a Reactive Communication Overview?

A Reactive Communication Overview is a quick reference document that outlines exactly how the person managing a client’s social presence should behave when faced with negative interactions. Reactive Communication Overviews are strategic documents that I or another Kuno team member create and then edit based on client preferences and suggestions.

The documents I create contain a graph of possible issues, examples and methods of facilitation, as well as more detailed protocol for addressing the negative comments. An example Reactive Communication Overview Graph may look something like this:



Facilitation Method

Product/Service Complaint

  • Accident claims
  • Poor Service
  • Warrantee Issues
  • Privately message consumer to contact customer service – provide a link for easy accessibility.
  • Publicly apologize for the issue and tell consumer to check inbox for further assistance.

Product Inquiries

  • Unlisted/confusing product or service specifications
  • How-to's
  • Engage Customer Service (if necessary) to post a public response.

Harmful Content Unrelated to Company

  • Profanity
  • Inflammatory engagement
  • Spam
  • Delete Comment
  • Privately message consumer, directing him/her to company posting policy and remind consumer company reserves the right to remove content and block users who violate policy.

*Mobile Note* Please view table in landscape mode.

Why is a Reactive Communication Overview Necessary?

Nobody is perfect—even the best companies sometimes make mistakes and have product and service issues. Statistics show 42 percent of consumers who contact a brand, product or company through social media for customer support expect a response within 60 minutes. What’s more, 32 percent expect a response within 30 minutes! A Reactive Communication Overview helps ensure your social media manager is prepared to respond with pre-approved verbiage and strategy.

Once you have your Reactive Communication Overview in place, be sure to check out this helpful article from Charlie Pownall on socialmediatoday that outlines principles for responding to negative online comments.

Do you think Reactive Communication Overviews are a social media management must-have? Share your thoughts in the comment section.

Photo Credit: zittware

lisa gulasy

Known as Hawkeye for her near superhuman copy editing abilities, Lisa Gulasy applies her unique experiences in agency and journalism to manage strategy and day-to-day engagement of client social media profiles and assist and researching and writing blogs, press releases and advanced content. Find her on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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