March 14, 2016 Duncan Alney

How To Handle Haters On Social Media: Jay Baer Interview

how to handle haters on social media

How to handle haters on social media is the subject of Jay Baer’s new book Hug Your Haters: How to Embrace Complaints and Keep Your Customers. It’s been touted as “the first modern book on customer service.”

In my Shorthand series, I ask fellow social media marketing industry leaders for three quick and easy-to-digest insights into their areas of expertise or interest.

Let’s get to my questions for Jay!

1. Why are haters important?

Two reasons. First, because you can find them. 95% of unhappy customers never complain in a form or fashion the business can find. So, the 5% who complain are raising their hands. This gives you the change to find them, hug them, and keep them. Second, inside every complaint is a kernel (or a whole cob) of truth. Negative feedback is the petri dish of operational improvements.

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2. Are legacy haters a lost cause?

Not at all. Phone and email complaints are still 2/3 of all complaints, and those haters expect a reply. 90% of the people who complain via phone or email expect a response from the business, and when they are ignored the drop in customer advocacy is severe. Ignoring legacy complaints takes a bad situation and makes it much, much worse.

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3. Are converted haters better lovers?

In many cases, yes. Lots of studies have been conducted on this and they show that customers who have a complaint that is successfully handled by the business become more loyal than customers that never had an issue. It’s like the Stockholm Syndrome of customer service!

Want more information on how to handle haters on social media? Purchase a copy of Jay’s book at

Interested in being featured in a future Shorthand post? Email me! Be sure to include ‘Shorthand’ in your subject line and let me know what you’d like to talk about.

Duncan Alney

CEO at Firebelly
Fun Fact: Duncan co-authored the book "Facebook Marketing Secrets." He founded Firebelly in 2001.
Duncan Alney

About the Author

Duncan Alney Fun Fact: Duncan co-authored the book "Facebook Marketing Secrets." He founded Firebelly in 2001.



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