How to handle a Bad Review or Post on Social Media
Working your brand on social media is GREAT until it isn’t – ugh, a bad review comes in.
As business owners we are all human, which means we make mistakes. Perhaps we were late delivering on a promise, or a job we promised to be perfect ended up taking a wrong turn or we have an employee that does something inappropriate – it happens more often than we like, or think.
So what happens when the dirty laundry shows up on social media in the form of a bad review, a nasty-gram post, or the troll that just goes all out and posts everywhere how horrible you are.
Well there is a right way…and a terribly WRONG way to handle it.
- Own it. If you’ve done something wrong, if you have an unhappy customer just own it. Don’t make excuses, don’t blame someone else. As the owner, it’s your role to take the hits 100% of the time.
- Understand that most unhappy customers just want to be validated and have you take ownership (see #1).
- Address the situation PUBLICALLY – so say, “Annie – I’m so terribly sorry you are upset and this happened to you, I’m sending you a private message now so we can get to the bottom of it”. Of course, pen the response according to the situation.
- Take it OFFLINE – you don’t want to get in a pissing match with someone in a Facebook feed. Take it off line – call them, email – whatever it takes.
- Get to the bottom of the issue – because we all know it could just be they were having a bad day and a minute little mishap has now turned into catastrophe! If you can – make amends.
- If you can fix things – ask them to kindly remove the post. It’s better if they do it versus you deleting it.
What if they are a troll just trying to make your life miserable? Delete the post and block them. That’s not to say they won’t find another place to vent. You can’t fix it all.
What about bad Google Reviews? Unscrupulous competitors will leave negative fake reviews just to be jerks. Even if it’s FAKE do the following:
- Address the complaint and apologize for whatever they are complaining about
- State you can’t seem to find them in your records as being a customer
- Offer to fix whatever is the problem, give them contact information to whomever is the “fixer”
- Flag or report the review as fraudulent
NOTE: *Even if you flagged the review, prospects and customers may still see it, or it may not be removed—this is why you ALWAYS respond.
The big answer: RESPOND. 100% of the Time.
If you ignore or just delete, it’s only going to fuel the fire. If you find yourself in a bad situation and the complaints are piling up – this of course is a bigger problem. Turn off the review option on social media and watch Google, Yelp and other platforms like a hawk. Be honest – “we are overwhelmed with orders and are doing our best to catch up” – etc.
In the end, negative reviews are usually overpowered by the GREAT ones! So It’s in your best interest to get as many 5 Stars as you can. So the best response to a negative response is not to have any in the first place. Make sure you understand your customer journey, your staff is properly trained and your operations are in check.
Struggling? Give us a call. We won’t manage your negative press, but we will get you in tip-top shape!