In my last post, I described my experience with an Internet marketing company. As a prospect, not a customer, I was “dissed” by the sales rep when he failed to keep an appointment that he had set up only a few hours before. As a disappointed prospect, I blogged about my experience and used the company’s name and the sales rep’s in the blog.
This company did exactly what it should have done to make the situation right again and its response can serve as a model of action to others who might get a bad review online. Here’s what that company did.
First, it found my blog post within a few days of appearing on the Web. By checking the analytics for my blog, I learned that someone had visited the blog on consecutive days by searching for “[company name] review” and “[company name] reputation.” About a week later, I received an email from the sales rep, apologizing for missing our appointment and offering to reschedule. When I didn’t respond immediately, the sales rep sent another email mentioning my blog post and asking to talk so that he could make things right. I checked my blog analytics again and found that someone had visited the blog several times using the search, “[sales rep name] [company name].” The sales rep never admitted that his company had found the blog post a week before, or that he had been directed to recontact me. However, I strongly suspect that he had been given direction to repair my “business experience” with his company. We had a cordial exchange via email and his supervisor called me a day or so later to give me the information I had originally sought from the sales rep. I have a positive feeling about this company again, and I’d recommend them to friends and clients.
So what should you do when you get a bad review or an unfavorable mention in a blog? First, you have to search the Web regularly for mention of your company name and “review” and “reputation.” Otherwise, you’ll never be aware of an unhappy client or prospect. Then you need to reconnect with your unhappy reviewer, and try to make things right. If you approach it like this company did, with an offer to try to resolve the situation, most people will be happy to accept and will delete their negative comments from the Web. Others might leave the negative comments, but will update their post to describe your company’s efforts to repair the situation. Only a very few will refuse your offers to resolve the problem. For those situations, you can usually post a description of your efforts to satisfy the disgruntled client or prospect.
The worst thing you can do is ignore the unhappy customer or prospect and the second worst thing is to threaten or try to bully the reviewer. That conduct will often be reported in the customer’s or prospect’s next blog post or review and your reputation will take an even bigger hit on the Web.
Take the high road! Search for mention of your reputation online, and when you find it, respond in a positive way.
If you’ve gotten a negative review and need some help in responding, please give me a call at 979-531-8300 or send me an email using the contact form.
- A Story About Prospect Management (hubspot.com)
- Sales Prospecting Tools for Startups (davidcummings.org)
- You’re the Boss Blog: Is This Company Ready to Hire Full-Time Sales Reps? (boss.blogs.nytimes.com)