So you are innocently going about your business, taking action, doing things the right way, making it a success.
Then all of a sudden out of nowhere, you start seeing some negative feedback, bad reviews or bad karma being spread about your good name. Naturally you’re fuming. And even more so when you realise that most of the negativity is fictionalised – in other words, someone trying to sabotage you!
Ok, so maybe it hasn’t happened to you – maybe it happened to a client? And you, as their go-to web person, are expected to hold all the answers.
Why Does It Happen?
There will always be genuine cases of screw-ups, misunderstandings and service at a level less than your best. It just happens some times.
You will of course also have some ridiculous, fussy, unreasonable clients or customers who you’d be grateful to be rid of and not have to deal with.
Then of course are the fake, fictionalised reviews that might come from trolls, bitter rivals who like to play dirty or as part of a scam by a digital “agency” for you to buy their services promising to help clean up your reviews (….by deleting the fake ones they post!). Sad but true.
The Thing To Remember Is…
You can’t erase things off the internet – it isn’t in your control – so DO NOT waste your time trying to!
What Else NOT To Do…
Don’t hold a grudge and try to fight back. Chances are that you’ll either look crazy or senile, or it’ll snowball. 99 out of 100 times it isn’t worth it.
A lot of you will already have heard of Amy’s Baking Company, in Arizona? They featured on Gordon Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares USA and claimed to be fighting back against trolls and fake online reviews. All that happened was they opened up a HUGE can of worms, caused a hell of a lot of public outcry,and made themselves look certifiably crazy.
If you want to check out the infamous episode of Kitchen Nightmares for yourself (at your own risk!), here you go![responsive_youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c6V6Qe4JBco]
If there is some major or serious libel or slander going on, then by all means, take up legal arms. And FIGHT. The website owner who publishes the content is responsible for that, so if there is even a hint of legal trouble, it will get sorted out.
So What Do You Do?
The ‘trick’ is actually pretty simple. And it is, that there is no trick! There is no magic bullet, or potion or push-button system. It quite literally is just a case of doing your absolute best on the things that are in your control. The whole internet however, is not in your control.
So here’s the key things on how to really deal with negative reviews:
- Do great work and provide great service
- Build new customers into lifelong customers
- Maintain great relationships so your clients love you
- Over deliver on your services as much as you can
- Build asking for reviews into your marketing & CRM
The combination of points 1 to 4 builds a huge amount of loyalty to you from your customers. As a result of that, point 5 helps reviews build organically, and 1 negative review won’t dampen that in any way.
And of course, with a loyal following and customer base, you’ve built an army. Let them know about 1 fake or malicious review you’ve received, and it’s like a rallying call – they’ll take care of the rest!
PS: If you need some help, why not get in touch for a free online business strategy session with me.