Using Social Media for Ministry

6 Tips for Responding to Negative Comments Online

Summer Koering

Now that you know how to be aware of what to post, it’s time to learn how to respond to negative comments.  

There are times when people want to voice their opinion — sometimes they are supportive and sometimes they really aren’t.

Here are six things to consider when responding to negative comments:

  1. Consider if the comment needs an immediate response or not.
  2. Decide whether responding will make things better or worse.
  3. Decide whether the comment should be deleted or not.
    Don’t delete comments just because they are negative. Sometimes people will become more angry if they see their comments are gone.
    We want people to feel free to share what they think, even if what they think doesn’t line up with our thoughts. And we want to interact with those who think differently, as long as they are not harming anyone.
  4. Consult with someone you trust. If you are having a difficult time knowing what the best thing to do is, then get a second opinion.
  5. Acknowledge people’s frustration. Let your followers know it’s okay to express their feelings. Everyone should feel like they can have an opinion and voice it.
  6. Evaluate if the response should be public or private. When you respond publicly once, and they continue the conversation, you can then move it to a personal message. That way you don’t leave a long thread of comments on your post.

Next Steps:

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