131140535 © Tero Vesalainen | Dreamstime.com
Negative Reviews 6436e44116ff9

9 tips for handling negative social media

April 12, 2023
No one wants negative social media feedback, but it happens to everyone. Here are the best ways to handle this uncomfortable situation.

Almost every practice encounters complaints on social media. It’s inevitable and, no matter how hard you try, you can’t please everyone. While social media offers practices and dentists the unique chance to engage with existing and potential patients, it also allows audience members to share their thoughts, feelings, and gripes. For some practices, this can be worrisome; there’s always the fear that one disgruntled patient will go viral with a single post.

Know that you’re not alone if you receive negative customer feedback on your social channels. What can set you apart is how you handle those complaints. There are plenty of things you can do to ensure you provide good customer service on social media while protecting your practice’s reputation. 

When responding to public complaints on social media, be professional, empathetic, and timely.

You might also want to read: The only permissible ways to respond to dental patient reviews

Top tips for effective responses

Acknowledge the complaint: Show that you’ve seen the complaint and that you understand the patient’s concerns.

Apologize: If the complaint is valid, apologize for any inconvenience or frustration the patient experienced.

Take responsibility: Take ownership of the situation and let the patient know you’re working to resolve it.

Provide a solution: Offer a solution to the problem or let the patient know what steps you’re taking to address the issue, both for them and future patients.

Follow up: Make sure to follow up with the patient to ensure that the issue was resolved to their satisfaction.

Be respectful and courteous: Always stay professional and respectful in your responses, even if the patient is angry or upset.

Be transparent: Be honest about what is happening and what you’re doing to resolve the issue.

Be consistent: Respond to all comments and messages in a timely manner.

Be public or private: Depending on the situation, you may want to respond publicly so that other patients can see how you’re handling the situation. You can also be private so you can address the specific concerns of the patient, especially if they’re of a sensitive nature.

Keep in mind that social media is a public platform, so your response will be visible to all. Be absolutely sure your response is appropriate for the public audience.

This article originally appeared in DE Weekend, the newsletter that willelevate your Sunday mornings with practical and innovative practice management and clinical content from experts across the field. Subscribe here.

About the Author

Hazel Woodward

Lift Social was founded by “social media queen” Hazel Woodward in 2020. Operating UK-wide and internationally, the Lift dental division specializes in organic social media marketing for dental practices and has managed more than 200 social media accounts. A former science teacher, Hazel’s background in the dental sector is complemented by her biochemistry degree and master’s in digital marketing. She plans to expand Lift Social into North America and the UAE.

Sponsored Recommendations

Clinical Study: OraCare Reduced Probing Depths 4450% Better than Brushing Alone

Good oral hygiene is essential to preserving gum health. In this study the improvements seen were statistically superior at reducing pocket depth than brushing alone (control ...

Clincial Study: OraCare Proven to Improve Gingival Health by 604% in just a 6 Week Period

A new clinical study reveals how OraCare showed improvement in the whole mouth as bleeding, plaque reduction, interproximal sites, and probing depths were all evaluated. All areas...

Chlorine Dioxide Efficacy Against Pathogens and How it Compares to Chlorhexidine

Explore our library of studies to learn about the historical application of chlorine dioxide, efficacy against pathogens, how it compares to chlorhexidine and more.

Enhancing Your Practice Growth with Chairside Milling

When practice growth and predictability matter...Get more output with less input discover chairside milling.