The internet can be a wonderful place, but it can get dark pretty fast. This is why you should know how to handle yourself online. There are upset customers who need customer service or answers to their questions. And then there are trolls. No, not the little angry people hiding under a bridge in a fairytale, but the individuals who provoke you online. Upset customers and trolls are different things. Today we’ll cover both.

Upset Customers:

Customer care on social media can seem daunting. Let’s say someone leaves you a bad review or an unpleasant post. Here are some tips to help deescalate and resolve the situation:

  • Do not get defensive. This may be your first reaction. However, we all know that speaking from a defensive position will not help the situation. So use the amazing customer care techniques you’ve honed in your real estate experience and apply it to social media.
  • Respond quickly. Even if you don’t have an immediate answer – respond. Letting upset customers know you will help them may stop them from going on other sites to complain.
  • Thank them for their feedback. This acknowledges their complaint. Many times a simple thank you will also prevent the situation from escalating to other sites. If you need to apologize, now is the time. But only apologize if it is sincere.
  • Take it offline. Taking the conversation offline will allow you to have an actual conversation with the client and may help you resolve the issue. For example: “Thank you for your feedback. I’d like to learn more about the situation….”or “I’d like to speak to you about the situation, please private message me your contact information.”


Trolls are not clients. Most of the time they are people you don’t know. Sometimes you don’t realize you’re dealing with a troll at first. Here are some ways you can identify a troll: they try to start arguments or intentionally post inflammatory content, they follow you off the comment section and post directly at you or on reviews, and, believe it or not, poor spelling/grammar is a big tip off that you’re dealing with a troll.

  • If you ever feel threatened – contact the police immediately. Your safety is of the utmost importance – period. First, file a police report if you feel or are threatened and let your manager and know.
  • Respond one time in the manner above. If you’ve responded, and they continue to troll you, your best bet is to disengage with them completely.
  • Ignore them. This is the most powerful tool you have. However, if you see someone you know engaging with them on your behalf, then private message that person and ask them not to engage with the person, as it may inflame the situation.
  • Report them. If it is bad, then block, ban or de-friend them. Each social network is different, here are links how to report on each:

How to report violations on Twitter

Report Something on Facebook

Report Something on Instagram

Report something on Pinterest

Reporting Inappropriate Content, Messages, or Safety Concerns on LinkedIn

If you are dealing with a troll situation or have a question or concern, please log on to the NRT Gateway and click here to fill out a form, and the Social Team will respond.

*Company materials, programs or meetings that are not for compliance purposes are optional for your use as an independent agent affiliated with the Company. Your use is not required for your continued affiliation with the Company. This document contains suggestions and best practices that you may use at your discretion.