How to Deal with Common Social Media Client Issues

April 18, 2018

A guide for social media managers on dealing with problem customers


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What’s This?

Before Socialdraft became a social media scheduling calendar tool for teams, we were a ragtag bunch doing social media for clients (we still offer managed services to our enterprise clients). We started small with local clients like restaurants and ended up handling multinational clients and governmental entities. It was pretty cool…most of the time. From time to time an issue would arise with a client. Of course, we wanted them happy so we did what we could, sometimes this worked for us, other times it turned out to be a mistake. So today, we want you to learn from our mistakes and give you our tips on how to deal with common client issues and complaints so that you can reduce churn and have a much happier work experience.

How to Deal with Common Social Media Client Issues

Preventing Client Issues

Preventing these issues is usually the best thing to do. The majority of times, we found that issues happen because the client is not educated in Social Media. No, they are not stupid, it’s just that the nature of social changes all the time. So, in order to educate your clients, you are going to set up a drip email campaign. The first one is to let them know you are there if they have questions. Then every week, you’ll send an email with common questions about the industry, or questions that former or current clients have already asked. Chances are if current clients asked, new clients will ask too. This will keep you in your client’s minds and head them off at the pass with common issues.


The second reason is that they may not be aware of all the work you are doing. So, each week you will send a growth report (if you use Socialdraft, you can pull these as often as you want and there’s no extra charge) and include an email that outlines what you have done for the week as well as any milestones you’ve hit. For example, when you reach your first 1,000 targeted Instagram followers, or when you make a connection with a powerful industry blogger on Twitter. Anything that you achieve needs to be included in this email. You need to boast about all the amazing things you are doing for them. Don’t be shy on this respect.

They bring in a consultant or “assistant”

Our team was pretty darn thorough. We had SEO’s, PPC’s, SMM’s, web devs, designers, you name it – we had it. When we brought on a few of our larger clients, they wanted a separate consultant on the accounts (nice that they had that kind of money – in retrospect, we should have charged them more). There were various issues with these extra people:

  1. More bureaucracy & meetings
  2. Intellectual property issues
  3. Contract security

Basically, if your client brings on someone new, you’ll have to defend your ideas more, you’ll have to worry that they may steal or take credit for your ideas, and they may want to slowly steal your business. If you are smart, you can spin all this in your favor.

The first thing you need to do is build a solid relationship with people on all teams. You need to show that you are irreplaceable and that you can become a partner to outside consultants. Craft a report for your client to show them everything that you have achieved before the arrival of the new team member or consultant. You want to do this so there is a baseline of where you are at.

Secondly, don’t be combative. This will not help. Introduce yourself to the new parties, be friendly, and be open about having communications with them. Let it be known that you are ready to work with them so that your client can get the best of both worlds. You’re building a trust relationship between all three parties.

Then discuss with your client exactly what the responsibilities of each party are. Tell them that you just want to have everything outlined so that you don’t step on any toes and so that there is no confusion in the future. This will put your client in the position of having to clearly outline these and will make you look very organized.

Then, work with the new party. They’re probably in the same spot as you. They are probably worried that you’re going to be combative or that you’re going to block their efforts. You never know if this person may become a great referral of new business. You don’t have to be their bestie, but you can have a great working relationship. It is your duty to work for the best interest of your client and this may be a fantastic way for you to get results and show just how good you are at teamwork.

Pick up a tool like Socialdraft which has team capabilities. Everyone can have their own log-in and different permissions. This makes it easy to be transparent without having to worry that someone is going to mess with your work product. You can even set up your client and their consultant up with guest accounts. That gives them access to their content and lets them leave notes, but not make any changes.

Your Client Acts Like Your Enemy

You’ve been working your tush off for your client. They’re getting great Facebook organic reach without any ads.  Then, suddenly, you get an email from your client asking why their competitor has 50,000 fans. Or maybe they accuse you of breaking their website (when what they have is a virus on their computer). They start sending nasty emails, asking for the impossible and in CAPS none the less.

You need to take control and you’re going to do this with communication and numbers. Going forward, you’ll be sending them weekly reports that include your growth, demographics (you can automate this with Socialdraft), and include an email with the attachment that tells them some awesome milestones (like that time Alyssa Milano retweeted them and broke their site). You’re going to explain to them how their competitor’s 50,000 fans mean nothing because their posts get no likes and that your demographics are all within their city or state. The idea here is not to give them a chance to question anything.

If you’ve already done this, the issue may not be you. They could be having problems with their spouse, maybe it’s low season and money is tight. Ultimately, you’re dealing with a human being and we’re all flawed. Ask them to hop on a video call so that you can discuss their concerns (we use Zoom and love it!). Seeing your face will help more than an email or a call.

Your Client Thinks They’re Smarter Than You

One day you wake up to check your analytics and you see 5,000 new followers from Bangladesh. Or your client keeps liking the page’s Facebook posts (not even as themselves, but as the pages). They ignore everything you say and are taking images from Google and posting them without telling you along with a link to their site. You’re freakin’ out.

You have to say something. Yes, it will be a difficult situation, but you’re a pro and you know how to handle this respectfully. Let your client know that they brought you on because you have experience and because you care about their success. Show them numbers, go into analytics and show them the results of their experiments. Explain to them that you’re doing this because you are looking out for their ROI. If they fail, you fail and your goal is to make them winners. If they still won’t listen, twist things around a bit. Say something like, maybe we can work this another way…and come up with a way 😉

Your client wants more, but they don’t want to pay for it

Your client hired you just to post to Facebook, but not to grow their audience. You took them on with the clear stipulation on exactly what the job was. They like your posts, but now they want you to grow their account and get more clicks to their website. You can do these things, but they require more time, planning and engagement. That means time and you need to get paid for your time. You quote your client and they don’t want to pay more.

Explain to the client that these things take time. Because of the time requirements, there is an extra charge, but these changes will result in an ROI which you will include in your reporting. And next time you quote them (even for a small project) include the costs of these extras in the contract and add them in as an on-request basis. This way they know that if they want something new there is a cost attached.

Your client wants you to do something illegal

Maybe your client has no time to send you pictures and asks you to “borrow” from Google. Then they demand that you leave positive Yelp reviews for their business (or worse, buy fake Yelp reviews).

Even if the request seems small, if it is illegal, you cannot comply. This is your reputation and your business. Start off by telling your client you’re not sure about the legality of their request. Suggest that you do a quick Google search to check on that.

If they insist that you partake in this illegality, ask them why they are interested in doing this. If you understand their desires, you may be better able to suggest something else that is legal and effective.

Ultimately, if they keep pushing. Just say no. Lawsuits just aren’t worth it.

How to Manage your Social Media Accounts

Socialdraft is an all-in-one Dashboard that helps you manage multiple Social Media Accounts. It is the most robust and simple tool for agencies and teams to effectively handle social media. With Socialdraft you can:

Schedule posts to Facebook pages, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn Business Pages (and one LinkedIn account) and Pinterest Boards
Schedule posts individually, as recurring posts, or bulk upload them as CSV
Easily re-schedule with a drag & drop action
Schedule GIFs to Facebook and Twitter
Download content calendars as PDF
Keep an eye on your online reputation and easily share the good news to social
Find content on Instagram and easily schedule reposts not just to Instagram but to all other social networks
Engage on Twitter, Facebook, and Linkedin
Download Facebook and Twitter reports
and tons more…

If you are curious about Socialdraft and any of its features, just click this link. If you’re ready to take us for your risk-free trial, simply click here to find the perfect plan for you.

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