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Take the Sting Out of Bad Reviews

Turning Negative Reviews into Positive Insights

Nothing hurts quite like excitedly scrolling to read reviews for a business that consumes all your waking moments only to come across a rotten tomato in the bunch.

Though you may never learn to love bad Yelp reviews, they shouldn’t cripple you. Remember, your world appears as you perceive it.

Here are ways to change your perception of bad reviews in order to ease the sting.

Negative Reviews Provide Constructive Feedback

If you only focus on the negativity, then you will never learn from your mistakes. Instead, read what they say with an open mind and review the aspect of your business they felt unsatisfied with.

For instance, let’s say a restaurant review reads, “The service here is terrible! The waitress spilled milk on the table and nobody was friendly!”

Instead of crying over spilled milk, you should see who was working and research to see if anybody on that day typically receives complaints. If so, watch them. If not, ask your employees what happened.

Also, now you can watch for similar reviews. This review opened your eyes to a possible issue and gave you the opportunity to:

    • talk to employees about expectations, like always acting friendly
    • fire a bad apple
    • review your employee handbook and fix it to match customer expectations
If nobody ever tells us what they don’t like, then how will we always give them what they do like?

People Only Hate What They Know

People cannot hate a business that they never heard of. Congratulations! Your marketing efforts made you visible.

Visible or not, some reviews can make you feel like an ant getting stepped on, but keep focusing on the positive. Your business is visible, functioning, and expanding!

In quality service, get used to:

    • the happy customer, who raves about your business
    • the yappy customer, who complains about your business
    • the quiet customer, who politely walks away
Silence is your enemy in business! So even a bad review is better than the dissatisfied customer who leaves without a word.

Bad Reviews Offer the Chance to Apologize

Sometimes a bad review feels like instant doom… dun-dun-duuuun!

It’s not.

Sometimes people who really enjoy the product or service a business provides simply want to give a heads up that something is momentarily out of whack. Loyal customer or not, their feedback offers you the chance to apologize and make it right.

Harvard Business Review explains that customer apologies should always come with an explination and an offer to make things right. If you pull off this apology well, you could gain long-term loyalty and respect; an opportunity that the bad review placed in your lap.

Sometimes It's Them, Not You

We all know, the customer is always right; but sometimes, they’re not. Sometimes a bad review stems from deep-rooted childhood pain that they decided to project on your business.

Remember, some people love chocolate, while others will only eat vanilla; there are even people out there who hate rainbow sprinkles. I’m not here to judge them but to show you that you might not be their taste.

To help you through the sting of a bad review, search through bad Yelp reviews of similar companies, to see if they get similar feedback.

Moving Forward

Move forward, arming yourself with the opportunity that bad review provides.

Contact us for help developing marketing content that will keep reviews, good, bad, and awesome, pouring in.

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