Internet Trolls in Customer Service

Sep 25, 2015

illustration of a troll on a computer

The dreaded internet troll is the bane of the social media marketing and customer service world.

What is an internet troll, you ask? Trolls are people who take pleasure in causing trouble and commotion within online communities, whether that be Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Reddit or any other online forum. They are typically negative and destructive. They also cause the community to go absolutely bonkers. It is especially tricky to deal with these trolls in customer service.

They can also be detrimental to social customer service efforts. If your business is on social media or other online forums, you need to arm yourself with a troll antidote. Here are some tips for dealing with those trolls once and for all.

Give them the facts!

A troll is generally just spouting off about something they perceive as an issue, but they don’t really know much about it. For example, why does this guy want to loiter with a diaper in front of the soda fountain. Plainly letting him know that isn’t an option is the best method.

Make them laugh.

Their tweets are silly. Why can’t you be silly back? Use a little (professional) humor to help thwart the troll.

Qdoba grill deals with a troll



02 meets trolls with humor

Be careful not to troll them back.


Victoria Plumb responds to angry customer with harmless humor

It’s obvious that this user was picking on Victoria Plumb, and they came back with some harmless humor to try and diffuse the situation. Just remember that this can backfire on you – and that it’s never funny when a customer gets hurt. Offer to help in any way you can regardless of whether the troll is pranking you or not.

Trolls happen. If you can’t beat them, join them. Have a plan. They are also an opportunity to showcase your lightning-speed customer service responsiveness and awesome brand voice.

What are some ways you’ve played the troll game before? Post in the comments section below.


Stephanie Jones

Stephanie Jones is a content writer and the social media manager for PATLive. She works from her cave, er, her home in Fayetteville, Ark., with her trusty dog and curmudgeonly cat by her side.

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