How to Use Social Media to Communicate During Site Downtime

Communication can solve many problems. A little often goes a long way and it’s one of the essential necessities to be performed in the event your company network goes down. Not only is it imperative to communicate with all of the pertinent, internal parties that rely on a successful network, such as IT departments, service providers, and vendors, but it’s also a crucial component of customer service.

Network downtime can mean hundreds, even thousands, of dollars in lost revenue as customers try to access a company’s website or sales portal and find their request denied. This can result in frustrated clientele who may try to contact the company through alternative means, namely social media, and leave a bad review or post documenting their displeasure.

In order to avoid negative feedback with your customers, the best thing to do is get out ahead of any network disruptions as quickly possible. Social media is the simplest way to do it and here are some helpful tips on alleviating the already difficult prospect of network downtime.

Constant Contact

Any smart business owner likely uses some form of social media in the marketing and promotion of his or her company, product, or service. You know all of the popular sites, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and having an updated online presence allows you to communicate with your clientele and engage them on a regular basis. This includes letting them know if something has gone awry at your place of business.
Network outages occur for any number of reasons and letting your customers know you’re aware of the problem should help you avoid angry public commentary. A descriptive post on Facebook or a witty, self-effacing tweet to your Twitter account can help alleviate the annoyance of your consumers.

Keep Customers Informed

Some issues require more attention than others. Not every network problem is as simple as rebooting a router. The longer your network is down, the more you risk losing the business of your customer base. Never keep them in the dark and provide continuous up-to-the-minute status appraisals of your current situation.

A well-informed customer is more likely to be forgiving or accommodating of the struggles you’re dealing with at the moment if they see thoughtful and informative posts on your social media accounts. When a company like Ticketmaster or AXS experiences slow response times due to servers that are inundated by excited fans trying to buy tickets to the concert of their favorite artist, they might let their client base know so frustrated fans don’t keep bombarding the site with requests.

Ample Warning

There are times when a network must undergo some maintenance or other upgrade that could inconvenience your customers. Most companies will perform these improvements during the slowest periods of time when the fewest people are trying to access a site or portal. Alerting your customers on your Facebook or Twitter page that your system will be off-line for upgrades is a smart way to avoid any negative feedback later. Providing them with ample warning to conduct their business outside of the expected downtime will benefit both parties as you can still offer the goods and services they need and your customers will be satisfied so as to offer their repeat business.

Personal Interaction

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and many other social media sites offer businesses the opportunity to interact directly with their clientele and vice versa. This personal engagement makes the customer feel like they’re included, that their opinions matter, and their messages will be seen by the principals of the company. It is important to foster that relationship by having the owner or public face of the business respond to the client directly.

The quickest way to lose the trust and interest of your fan base is to make them think that some faceless subordinate stooge is posting by proxy. So when the company system has gone down, having the person they will consider responsible – the business owner – expressing his or her regret and apologizing personally for the hiccup will make a world of difference. It shows that this business cares about its customers and is working to make them happy as fast as it can.