Help, I got a terrible review!

If there’s one thing I’ve learned looking at reviews for things I want to buy and reading the comment section on any YouTube video, the internet is a negative place. It seems that no one wants to say anything online unless they are ripping you a new one.

If you own a business, you’ve undoubtedly received a Google or Facebook review that has completely dressed down your customer service and you can’t even remember the situation happening. It’s easy to immediately blame yourself, but keep in mind… some customers are not right.

So how do you respond to a negative review? Do you?

Do not get defensive. 

The worst thing that any business can do is respond to a negative review defensively. Keep in mind, the people that read these reviews have no loyalty to your business or product. They’re skimming through the best and the worst reviews to see what they can expect if they visit your business. When they see you acting defensively, they assume that the customer was likely justified and you won’t take responsibility for bad service or a faulty product. Stay positive and ask questions about the specific situation. Encourage the negative reviewer to reach out directly and never discuss it further in public.

Move everything offline if possible. 

Encourage a negative reviewer to reach out to you directly. Never continue a back and forth online. There are a couple of reasons for this. Firstly, not every reviewer wants a resolution. Some reviewers just want to watch the world burn, or rather your business. They had one negative experience and feel slighted beyond compare. Now, they’re out for blood. Continuing a discourse with them will just be a frustrating experience that will make your business look like the villain.

Secondly, not everyone needs to see how your business will rectify the situation. Imagine this, you find that a reviewer has had a bad time at your establishment and you offer a refund or a free product. Now, someone who doesn’t have the best intentions at heart is looking for the opportunity to get something for free. As well, it sets up an expectation in the future for someone else who has received bad service.

Provide an email address for a manager or a telephone number for direct contact.

Understand that things might not change. 

After someone gives a review, the chances that they ever come back to it are very slim. They will likely never call or email. If you get a hold of them and they come in for a repeat, they will likely never change their review.

Understand this and do what you can to manage your reputation in other ways. Think about encouraging more of your satisfied customers to leave reviews and update your Facebook page frequently.

Wondering how you can use social media to your advantage? For the month of February, we’re offering free website and social media audits for your business. We will provide you with a report that will give you a rating and feedback on how you can win the game when it comes to your marketing.

Sign-up here and receive your report in the next few days. 

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