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As a social media specialist, my Golden Rule is NEVER DELETE A NEGATIVE COMMENT. Although it seems tempting, deleting comments will only add fuel to the fire.

At Rizco, we recommend you follow a consistent procedure when responding to social questions and comments to maintain trust and brand loyalty with new and future clients.


Respond to everything. In this era of social media, engagement is critical.

Implement Bots. If you are unable to respond immediately, utilize the automated bots, and create a general response for all inquiries. Bots say, “We see you. We hear you. We will respond,” and allow you a 24-hour window to address the situation.

Use Emojis. For an automatic response, consider responding through emojis.

Delete nothing. Hiding or deleting comments on social implies you have something to hide.

Whether positive or negative, respond publicly to the comment, so individuals in the thread see you are addressing the situation.

If the comment is negative, send a direct message to the user to address the situation offline. Showing that you care enough to take the time to address individual users might be enough to calm the situation.

To ensure vulgar content does not appear on Facebook, set your profanity filter (located in your page settings) to “strong.” Facebook will remove provocative content and any images/text that does not follow its policies. To control your profanity settings on Instagram, navigate from Settings > Privacy > Comments and turn on “Hide Offensive Comments.” You can also filter this setting by keywords which will block vulgar words on Instagram.

Be Consistent. Never send different messages to different users.

Keep your brand message constant and consistent. We recommend you draft official statements for frequent situations. For example, create clear explanations for questions, comments, and circumstances, including legal documentation, privacy policies, and emergency numbers. If you are a medical provider, it is best if you provide an automated response containing “…if you are in immediate need of medical assistant dial 9-1-1.”

Stay Anonymous. Never reveal your personal identity.

Answer as the collective “we.” For example, “We are sorry about your experience and hope that we can improve the situation. Please send us a detailed email containing dates and times, and we will contact you directly.”

Remain Personable. Respond with human concern, not in bot-like sentences.

Remember to say “Thank you” and ensure the client feels essential.

Responding to comments and interacting with end users on your social channels increases your visibility to both potential customers and existing competition. Listen to what your clients say and consider your response. Measure the effectiveness of your communication by returning customers and public reviews. Check-in with dissatisfied customers and offer compensation or incentives to remain loyal to your brand. Remember, hide nothing and respond to everything!