What To Do When You Get a Horrible Review

Did your business get a bad review? Don't panic, says today's guest, Daniel Lemin

Did your business get a bad review? Don’t panic, says today’s guest, Daniel Lemin

Have You Been Dissed on a Review Site?

Let’s face it: you can’t please all of the people all of the time. If you are in the type of business where people leave ratings, at some point you’ll be hit with a negative review.

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Surprisingly often, says today’s podcast guest, Daniel Lemin, author of ManipuRated: How Business Owners Can Fight Fraudulent Online Ratings and Reviews, what you read fraudulent. And dealing with the big companies that host them, like Facebook or Yelp, can be an exercise in frustration.

If They Are Frauds, Should I Even Bother With Review Sites?

Unfortunately (or fortunately, from the viewpoint of customers who want to be well-informed before making buying decisions), review sites are here to stay.

Increasingly these sites are starting to recognize the need to crack down on fraudulent reviews, but most haven’t got the problem solved yet. So in the meantime, what can you do?

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Daniel Lemin

Daniel Lemin

First, don’t ignore them. You need to “focus on review sites because that demonstrates a commitment to customer experience,” says Lemin.

So be sure you are tracking what’s being said about you, and be ready to respond quickly. The sooner you at least acknowledge the complaint, the better off you’ll be.

Show Empathy

Approach your critics “from a place of empathy.” Let them feel that you are truly sorry they had a bad experience. Then offer to talk with them offline to try to satisfy them.

Don’t get defensive! Even if you know what they are saying is wrong. You won’t win that PR battle.

Don’t Pay People For Good Reviews

You can get in trouble for paying people (with money, goods or services) for giving you a five-star review. Don’t go there!

However, you can offer a token of appreciation as encouragement for people to give a review, whether it is positive or negative.

But Do Ask for Ratings

Most of the time, though, you are best not paying for reviews at all. Instead, form a connection with your customers. If they feel that connection, they’ll want to review you positively.

“The most important thing …,” says Lemin, is to “take good care of your customers, and in turn give them a chance to take care of you back.”

Speaking of Which…

It would mean a lot to me if you’d review the Frank Reactions podcast on iTunes. Apple uses review numbers to decide which podcasts to let people see easily. Here how to do an iTunes review.

Doug Sandler review of PeopleShock

Click image to read the review

I also got the first review of my new book, PeopleShock: The Path to Profits When Customers Rule. To my delight, it was a five star, and from someone I’d never met. (I have since then; just recorded an interview for his Nice Guys on Business podcast.)

And if you want to hear more from Daniel Lemin, check out the ManipuRated podcast. (Here’s a link to his recent interview with me.) His show is one of my new faves.

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