When your business receives a negative review, it can be very stressful. Unfortunately, negative reviews are inevitable. If your business has received a negative review, don’t panic. Instead, take the following steps to ensure that it’s handled appropriately to maintain a positive public image for your company.
One of the most important things to remember when receiving a negative review is to always respond. You should never ignore a negative review, as it will give the appearance that you don’t care about your customers or their feelings. It’s important to make every customer feel heard and cared about. When you respond to a negative review, you reinforce the idea that your company cares about its customers.
Acknowledge the Issue and Apologize
You should never get defensive when faced with a negative review. You should always acknowledge their problem and apologize for the issue and for the trouble it has caused them. When you try to defend your company rather than apologize, it can create a back and forth between you and the customer that will not help your company’s image. In order to maintain a positive image with your customers, it’s best to acknowledge the customer’s issue and apologize.
Promote a Positive Image
It’s important to acknowledge the issue that your customer has, but you can still talk about your company in a positive light. Don’t contradict your customer, but highlight the positive aspects they might have missed. You should always make a customer feel heard, but it’s important to reinforce the positive aspects of your company and how you can help them.
You should always sound authentic and personal in your response to your customer. It’s important to be genuine and be concerned about your customer and what they’re going through. Each response to a complaint should sound like a personalized message rather than an automated response. When you’re sincere and personal in your response, it will improve the reputation of your company and ensure that you care about your customers.
Take it Offline
Although you should always be sure to respond to every negative review to receive, you should discourage any sort of online back and forth between you and the customer. Instead, encourage your customer to contact you offline. Provide them with an email, phone number, or form that will help them discuss their concerns and get results. When you take the conversation offline, not only will your customer feel cared about, but will also have a better chance of having their problem solved.
Use it to Learn
It is often said that for every one customer that complains online, there are 20 unsatisfied customers that do not speak up. Therefore, you should use a negative review as a learning opportunity. There are some specific cases in which a customer’s issue is unique, and others in which a customer could be misunderstanding a situation or overreacting. However, in many cases, a negative review can reveal a problem with your company, product, or service, about which you were unaware. In these cases, a negative review is a great way to learn from your mistakes and make adjustments.
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