Some of the main goals of using social media for your startup are to let the public know that you\\\'re open for business (and intend to stay that way!); and to have a means of connecting with your customers for inquiries, sales, and feedback.
Social media does help cut through the corporate red tape and enable a faster process, but this direct line also has a major pitfall. Sometimes, the discussions can get too heated, and the person manning your social media accounts might respond to negative consumer messages inappropriately — which would then lead to more backlash, Internet infamy, and a reputation that can be very difficult to change or live down. This is especially the case for entrepreneurs who maintain significant or full control of the startup, have seen it grow from the ground up, and have a very personal stake in it.
There are a few ways to avoid a war of words between you and miffed/combative customers:
-Hire a person or team to handle all social media interactions. Make sure this person or the team members has/have an even keel, can let even the most negative comments and vicious personal attacks slide, and know what to do to pacify irate customers and how to turn things around.
-If you insist on doing it yourself and/or if you\\\'re a solopreneur/freelancer or in charge of a very small enterprise, it would be best to maintain separate accounts for personal and work use. This separation will help you get into a specific mindset and know when you\\\'re speaking for yourself, and when you\\\'re speaking on behalf of your brand or the whole team.
-This applies to any kind of correspondence: take your time. Never respond in the heat of the moment. Becoming too emotional will make you commit mistakes that, in turn, may become irreparable.