Yeah, we know tensions are high this election season. You’re checking your Facebook feed every few minutes for the latest news vilifying the candidate you don’t want to win … and the one you plan to vote for, too.

It makes you want to slip on your Halloween costume, shut off all the lights, plunk yourself down on the couch with your candy bowl and fall happily into a sugar coma.

(That’s definitely what we’ll be doing this All Hollows’ Eve.)

HERE’S THE THING ABOUT COSTUMES

When you wake up in November, consider this: as a business owner you wear a costume all the time. You put a smile on your face no matter who walks through the door because you are committed to excellent customer service.

Same goes with social media. There’s a lot of mudslinging going on, so we have to ask.

You’re not … participating, are you?

It might feel like you’re being “real” when you get heavy into political posting, but you’re really just putting on another costume; one that likely offends half your customer base.

START HITTING THE DELETE BUTTON

We understand. You want to speak your mind. You feel passionately about your political views.

You can feel free to do that as an individual, in person or maybe in a Facebook group. As a business representative, just don’t. Not even from your personal account. You can’t afford to.

If you’ve already gotten your hands dirty, your first step in getting your business back on track might be to go back and delete every political comment you’ve made over the last couple of months. Then you can start working on remaking that social media voice.

STANDING OUT MEANS WEARING THE RIGHT COSTUME

You won’t stand out on social media as yet another voice in the political crossfire. Your voice needs to remain pro-customer, not pro-candidate. Here are three ways to do it:

  1. Make light of the campaign.

People want to laugh at times like these. Consider ways you can poke a little fun, like promoting donkey- or elephant-themed products (care for a side of freedom fries with your donkeydogs and elephantburgers?). You’re really in luck if you sell pumpkins – you can offer up some great carving ideas!

  1. Be a voice for civil discourse.

If you prefer a more serious tone, the key to not alienating half your customer base is to validate everyone’s right to have an opinion. The more you can communicate that everyone is welcome no matter their political views, the better. Addressing this head on makes for a good post.

  1. Remain silent on politics altogether.

This is a perfectly valid option. Keep focusing on what you and your customers agree matters: a good product that solves problems at a fair price. When customers try to engage you about politics on social media, tell them you’d be happy to discuss politics in person. Maybe send them a coupon!

Don’t let the election get the best of you, at least not on social media. Keep the right costume on this Halloween and beyond, because if you’re scaring people off no one’s having fun.