Should I Respond?

Should you respond to a poor or unfavorable review? The answer is yes! It is actually more important to respond to a negative post than a positive one. Not responding to the negative complaint only strengthens their stance. This is important for local small businesses. If the review is legitimately bad, and it is something you can fix, tell them. The purpose of social media sites is not only to get knowledge about your business out there, but have the ability to measure the attitude about the business. Responding in a professional manner will show other visitors to the site that you do care about your customers and what they think. It is your job to prove that your business is not a “Johnny come lately-running through the night” operation.

Be Professional About it

Don’t be on the defense and end up offending. There are benefits to buying local. Understand that you want to protect your business, it is your dream come true and you want to protect it. Human nature dictates that our first response is to bash the basher. Don’t let emotions get in the way of your professionalism. Explain changes in a professional, non-professional manner to the poster’s review. Don’t ask to have the post removed. They are the customer and they have to right to voice their concerns. It also makes you look petty and childish. Adults understand that not every comment made about anything is going to be good every time. No matter how hard you try, you are still not going to be able to satisfy everyone. Make use of the negative to create something positive.

  • Be polite and legitimate
  • Explain new changes based on their review
  • Address legitimate concerns
  • Keep your emotions in check

Turn it Around

Make every legitimate negative review something positive. Use anything you can as leverage supporting the positive aspects of your business. Turn the negatives into positives. Acknowledge that there is a problem and do as much as you can to fix it. You never know if a tiny problem has been there all along but was never pointed out. Just as a social media web site can help your business grow, it can destroy it. Once you head down the childish “I did not-you did too” you are going to start to loose right there. It becomes a contest that you can’t and won’t win. Keep to the high road and keep your emotions to yourself so you don’t say things that you don’t mean. Write only positive things and show gratitude that your customers took the time to let you know how they feel.

photo credit: 36th and Troll via photopin (license)