Recently a client emailed me a link to a Google review that was several months old and less than flattering to their firm. You could sense the anxiety and fear in the tone and the seemingly simple question, “can you make this go away?”
So how can a bad review possibly be good news? No I haven’t lost my mind – at least not entirely. What this does it put a sense of urgency and a dose of reality that what is in fact happening on the internet today effects everyone. Companies that are taking their time to dive in should take note. Even if you don’t have a plan or strategy in place to engage in social media it is time to recognize that millions upon millions of people are and one is bound to be a customer of yours.
That being said, no company in the history of man is perfect. There are system, service and product failures and this is normal – as long as they are not the ‘norm’ for the company. It isn’t that you never make a mistake or have a bad product or customer service is asleep at their desk, it is how you respond.
A tweet here or there, a review in one place or the other picked up immediately can be a early warning alarm that something has gone wrong in your operation. It could be a single episode or worse the beginning of a pattern and either way requires your prompt attention. More details please visit:-joacimmelin.se gangstar.se grafikbettan.se
As far as the disgruntled consumer or client goes – the faster you respond the more likely they are to either remove the post or update it with a satisfied review. People are usually realistic and more often than not, are understanding. They want to know that they matter and that you care – you heard them and you responded. The faster you respond, the better they feel. Don’t make excuses or blame someone else – find out what will make the situation right or what can you offer to compensate for their pain? You need to find a way to let them know they matter. Yes there are chronic complainers and just some evildoers in the world and there are ways to address that as well.
At the end of the day take note: if you are not listening and watching your brand and your reputation is at the mercy of anyone and everyone. If you aren’t ready to tweet, fan, follow and blog (and I still can’t think of a reason not to do these things) then at least make sure that you have your alerts set to listen for mumblings, good or bad and make the most of them. You might even have a band of fans out there who are feeling a bit unappreciated and that too is a missed opportunity or worse the beginnings of a soured relationship.
Tip #1: go to Google.com/alerts and start using their free service to email you as soon as your company’s name appears anywhere.
Tip #2: if you don’t already have one, then open a Twitter account so that you can at least use something like to search for tweets that use your company’s name.
Tip #3: make it a priority or someone’s job to go to Yelp.com and everyday to search your company’s name.
Tip #4: consider having every order filled, every service provider or however your customer is ‘touched’ be accompanied with a simple card that says SERVICE EMISSARY – PLEASE CALL (PHONE NUMBER) OR EMAIL (EMAIL ADDRESS) IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS OR CONCERNS – WE APPRECIATE YOUR BUSINESS. And make sure that the person on the end of that phone and email know that it is a crisis management hotline.
Tip #5: have a response team or plan in place to respond appropriately and swiftly to what ever the complaints are and that they have some latitude with resolution offers.
Protect what you have worked so hard to build and improve improve improve at every step of your company’s development. Your customer’s are your best advisors as to how well you are doing.
And for those of you who are just discovering a bad review that is months or years old, I can suggest that you start a campaign to get customers to add great reviews, this will accomplish two things. First it will bury the bad review, and second it will positively increase your search rankings.