Open, interactive communication is the key to good content-focused marketing. Whether it’s through blog comments, review sites, or social media, never before has it been so easy for clients and customers to tell you how they really feel — publicly.
When the comments are good, the results can be fantastic — word of mouth recommendations, new clients, more people visiting your website. Generally, good reviews equate to a level of advertising you couldn’t ever buy. It’s easy to engage with these customers and thank them for their time and good thoughts.
But what about those who leave negative comments?
Now, don’t break into a cold sweat just yet. Yes, bad reviews can take a chunk out of your business but they don’t have to. There are several things you can do to when this happens. Remember, they’re not the only one with the power to communicate. You have it too and with a few pointers, you can deal with anything a Negative Nelly throws your way.
- Be Open and Non-Defensive: Reply back to the comment or review. Calmly thank them for taking the time to send feedback and let them know that you will take their constructive suggestions into consideration. Let them know that you strive to serve your clients in a high-quality, professional manner and will continue to work towards achieving these standards.
- Offer a Solution: Are they complaining about a broken product? Encourage them to exchange it — no hassle. The key to this is to treat them as if they were standing in front of you. Don’t brush them off. Let them know that you want to make their experience with your company a pleasant one. As well, this does not have to be done publicly. Feel free to email or direct message them during this piece of the interaction.
- Invite Other Comments: Don’t agree with the comment or think it was harsh or from out in left field? If you have good traffic to that comment area, others will often disagree and neutralize it’s affects. If you’re concerned that none of your cheerleaders will see the comment in good time, send out a Tweet or Facebook post asking your network to take a look at the comment and let you know what they think about it.
Negative comments and reviews that are left alone (or left for too long) are assumed to be correct. Take the time to check the review sites, your blog comments, and the social media sites for comments on your company or products on a regular basis. Remember, a negative comment is the opportunity to improve somebody’s experience and to show that you take pride in your business and your customer service.
Have you replied to a negative comment before? How did it go? Let us know in the comments.