Tips on Managing User Engagement on Paid Content

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Guest Post by Karolina Mikołajczyk

If you’re active on social media, you understand the importance of interacting with users who engage with your content. But simply participating in discussions surrounding your brand online does not make a successful moderation strategy, especially in the case of paid social media content, where financial investments are involved. 

Creating content that generates user engagement is not an easy task. It requires a deep understanding of one’s target audience and a skillful interpretation of what they expect to find on social media. Strong engagement rates are sought after by marketers because, unlike vanity metrics such as page like numbers, they showcase a brand’s ability to activate followers, effectively increasing the chance of converting them into paying customers.

Unfortunately, not all user engagements hold equal value for a balanced social media strategy. Comments that violate Facebook’s Community Standards - or simply express dissatisfaction with your products or services - are bound to pop up on your social accounts eventually. There is no defined, right way to deal with offensive, hateful, or spammy comments, but one thing is certain: you shouldn’t ignore them. 

The above is particularly important in the case of comments added to sponsored (a.k.a. dark) posts, which are displayed in your targeted groups’ feeds as well, posts - complete with comments and reactions. You allocate budgets in sponsored posts, so why would you allow inappropriate comments to compromise the outcome of your campaigns?

Continue reading to find out the best practices for moderating user engagement on paid content and ensure you stay in charge of your ad campaigns’ ROI.

Let your customer service shine

Negative comments can be a blessing in disguise if you use them as an opportunity to showcase the high quality of your social customer service. Answer them to show your community that you value every opinion, even if it points to your shortcomings. 

Acknowledge whatever grievances the authors raise and apologize if necessary. Offer solutions to problems and incentives for dissatisfied customers to stay with you instead of giving your competitors a chance. Don’t get defensive, even if you disagree with someone’s opinion - it’s never a good idea to question an unhappy customer’s reasons or start a public dispute. 

The stakes are high. By publicly attending to problematic customer experiences, you’re not only solving individual existing problems. You’re also creating and reinforcing the image of a responsible business that meets their customers’ needs outside of traditional forms of communication. Modern consumers expect brands to solve issues in real-time, using social platforms. Show your sponsored posts’ target group, i.e. your potential new customers, that you’re social media savvy and you understand their expectations.

Discuss sensitive matters in private messages

While it’s extremely important to make your team available to address customer questions and complaints on social media, some matters simply don’t belong in publicly accessible comment sections. When moderating comments added to sponsored posts, remember that moving select conversations to private messages is a perfectly viable option. 

When should you resort to private messages?

  • When dealing with complex issues that require a lengthy back-and-forth - you wouldn’t want the conversation in the comments to become a distraction from the post itself;

  • When you need to exchange sensitive data, such as order numbers, payment details, or contact information;

  • When you’re dealing with a ‘troublemaker’ - some social media users tend to escalate non-critical problems to an unreasonable degree. Remember that everyone has a right to their opinion and make sure to hear such customers out, but take the discussion off the public forum, so that it doesn’t dominate the comment section.

Only delete or hide comments in extreme cases

The importance of acknowledging user interactions with your posts and engaging with them cannot be stated strongly enough. Again, it’s good practice to be receptive and respectful of all opinions, good or bad. This, however, applies to constructive feedback from users who are genuinely interested in your products and services. Other types of comments - spam, offensive or inappropriate language, and self-promotion - should be treated as a separate category and dealt with accordingly.

While hiding or deleting a negative comment from a customer could be considered manipulative and unfair, doing so with inappropriate comments is in yours and your audiences’ best interest. Here is why:

  • Spam is absolutely irrelevant and adds no value to the conversation. Such comments can also include dangerous links, e.g. to sites with malware. 

  • Inappropriate and offensive comments are simply that: inappropriate and offensive. Not deleting them can lead to customers associating your brand and your content with the values - or lack thereof - such comments convey.

  • Self-promotion - your posts are not a platform for unfair competition. If other brands try to publish discounts or referral codes as comments to your posts, deleting their comments is justified - don’t think twice. 

Implement automation solutions

Moderating sponsored posts is similar to moderating organic content, but it’s not quite the same. We already mentioned one significant difference - the fact that dark posts come with a price tag and that allowing chaos in the comments could affect your ROI. It’s also important to remember that sponsored content is displayed in the feeds of a very valuable audience - a target group that you designed with specific business objectives in mind and that, handled with care, can eventually become part of your customer base. 

With this in mind, it’s clear that smart moderation is a higher priority for sponsored content than it is in the case of organic posts with a more limited lifespan and reach. But, in a very practical sense, it’s also more difficult. Dark posts are displayed only in the feeds of your target audience, i.e. they don’t show up on your Facebook page or Instagram profile alongside organic content. The fact that moderators need to take extra steps to access sponsored post comments and manage conversations creates space to overlook engagements and leave questions unanswered.

Minimize this risk by implementing social media automation solutions. Third-party tools can set you up for success with automated actions and responses triggered by specific user engagements (e.g. automatically deleting comments that include offensive language). Automating moderation not only makes your social media strategy error-proof - it also improves response rates and frees up extra time for your team to deal with more complex customer inquiries. 

Recap

Many factors contribute to the success of a social media ad campaign. Optimizing your budgets and target audiences is an essential step to reaching your campaign goals - but it’s not enough to ensure success. Once your ads are up and running, make sure to stay on top of how social media users interact with them. Keeping the discussions around your sponsored content civil and tidy can improve your target audience’s perception of your brand. Don’t take chances - make sure to follow our tips to moderating user engagement on paid content and stay in control of your ROI.

 

Karolina Mikołajczyk is a content and social media specialist with years of digital marketing experience. Originally associated primarily with influencer marketing, currently exploring social media automation tools and strategies. Karolina loves music and her two twin cats.

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Olga Osokina