How to Use Facebook’s Hidden Wall and Other Page Moderation Tools to Protect Brand Reputation

The following is an excerpt of entry in our Facebook Marketing Bible. The full version contains walk-throughs and strategies  for hiding comments and banning users.

As your Facebook Page grows in size and stature and begins to attract a healthy number of fans, so too will the level at which those same fans interact with your Page. Highly engaging Pages can quickly blossom into a valuable community, but the messages posted to your Wall by fans will not always be positive.

Here we’ll provide walk-throughs of Facebook’s native Page moderation tools, and explain how to execute a moderation strategy that protects your brand but doesn’t silence discussion.

Moderation Strategy

Popular Pages can and should expect customer complaints and criticism, irrespective of the quality of product or service being provided. Examples of situations that could lead to customers submitting negative posts or comments to your Page’s Wall include:

  • Delays in shipping a product
  • Faulty or damaged products
  • Poor service or perceived rudeness
  • A public relations crisis

Complaints beget complaints, with customers who might previously have said nothing now speaking up when they realize that other people are suffering the same problems. This behavioral cycle will quickly repeat itself, and a Page Wall can move from positive to negative in a matter of moments.

Overall, you need to remember that the medium is social: customers expect to be able to have an open and honest conversation about your company and the service they experience. Any action you take, from hiding comments, to replying in public, to banning users, is going to be judged as representative of your company. You must balance the natural desire to keep your Page as positive as possible with maintaining credibility among your fans. This can sometimes mean leaving negative comments public.

Page Permissions

Facebook allows Admins to change the permissions on their pages, giving them control over a number of different aspects such as country restriction, age restriction and the posting ability of users, plus word and profanity blocklists.

To edit your Page’s permissions, select Edit Page and then click on the Manage permissions tab on the left sidebar.

Admins managing very popular pages should consider the use of certain keywords in the Moderation blocklist – for example, the names of competitors or overly negative words. When users try to include blacklisted words in their posts these will automatically be marked as spam and moved to the Hidden part of your Page’s wall (more on this in a moment). The Profanity blocklist works in the same way (although Facebook doesn’t list which words it is looking for) and should also be adjusted accordingly.

Hidden Posts – Your Page’s Secret Wall

Facebook will analyze posts made to your Page’s Wall and automatically filter out spam (or what it perceives to be spam), which you can view in the Hidden Posts link on the left sidebar of your Page.

Admins can also move posts to the Hidden part of the Wall by selecting the Hide Post option from the drop-down menu accessible via the options cog on each post.

Popular pages therefore can expect to manage two different Walls – the public and freely-readable main Wall, and the private and (mostly) Admin-only Hidden Wall. Posts can be moved freely between each wall.

Hidden posts will no longer be visible to users reading your Page’s Wall, and the original poster will not be aware that their post has been hidden so they don’t think to immediately repost.

It also important to be aware that Facebook’s spam filter is a little inconsistent, and will trigger a number of false positives that will need to be moved back to the main part of the Wall. It’s good practice to regularly peruse your Hidden posts and unhide any posts that have been mistakenly labelled as spam by Facebook.

The full version of this article, complete with walk-throughs of the comment hiding and user banning tools can be found in the Facebook Marketing Bible, Inside Network’s complete guide to marketing and advertising through Facebook.