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How to Handle a Negative Reviews

Wedding Planners

Photographers 

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Dear Wedding Professional:

 

If you read my blog last week, you learned that I'm a huge advocate for using social media to grow your wedding business.  But if you do that, then at some point you’ll have to deal with negative feedback.  How you handle the feedback can go a long way toward either getting a new customer or driving away a potential sale.

 

Here are 3 tips to help you to handle a negative comment appropriately and to keep your customers coming back for more.

 

  1. Don't delete the comment. This shows your fans that you're able to own up to the complaint and deal with it head on in a professional way.  Plus, deleting the comment will only make your frustrated customer even more frustrated.  The only case when you should delete a comment is if it is over-the-top offensive.  For example, if it includes profanity or if it is racist, etc.  In my opinion, comments like that don't deserve air-time.  
  2. If it is a rational comment, address it quickly and don’t be defensive.  It’s best to be accommodating, polite and truly listen to the person complaining.  First recognize the complaint, apologize publicly and then take the conversation offline to resolve the issue. Come up with a positive solution that directly addresses it. If the person isn't satisfied with your explanation, you can try offering a business service or a discount to calm the situation and, hopefully, convert the complainer to a satisfied customer.
  3. If it is an irrational comment - ignore it.  (Again, don't delete it!).  Trust me.  your fans will realize that this person is not in their right mind.  And better yet - your fans might stick up for you.  That would make the response even more credible.

 

Even if your business doesn't have a dedicated social media presence, you still need to know what people are saying about your business. Type your company’s name into Google to see the comments that are out there. And set up Google Alerts to stay on top of the comments.  And keep your response positive, sincere and proactive.  Do you have any tips to share with our wedding community about handling negative feedback?  If so, please comment below.

 

Did you like this blog post?  Want more?  Then, fill out our short form and get a FREE weekly subscription to high-value marketing articles from Christine Dyer, social media expert and founder of BridalTweet.com ($197 value).  SUBSCRIBE HERE.

 

 

Thank you again for making this a fun and supportive wedding community,

 

 

Christine Dyer, Social Media Expert and Founder of BridalTweet

 

 

Comment by Angela Bauter on April 15, 2013 at 11:36am

Good article.  I have seen a few vendors really lose it the first time they receive an irrationally negative comment, doing themselves far more damage than just ignoring it or responding calmly would have.

Comment by Dj Sam on April 15, 2013 at 11:39am

Great advice!

Comment by Neal McFarlane on April 15, 2013 at 11:44am

This came up as a topic during one of the seminars at this weeks Canadian DJ Show. There were many from the "old guard" that advocated removing any negative comments . I reiterated that any rational comment should be viewed as a gift. A way to develop and improve what we do . If they took the time to write a review our prompt response and actioning of it shows that we do care .

Comment by Dr. Vincent M Savage on April 15, 2013 at 4:28pm

I agree that one should not freak out especially about totally unjust comments. Beaver Lake Retreat is a high alpine lodge for weddings and other group gatherings which naturally, on the edge of wilderness, has a few chip-munks running around and even rarely into a porch or one of the cabins when the doors are open all day during a wedding. Despite the furry tails and stripes on their sides, one guest from Chicago insisted on trying to convince us that our chip-munk, nick named Rocky, and his friends were "rats." We declined to grant the guest's bogus demand for a 50% discount, and they followed through with a negative online comment. We treated it with humor and signed our reply, Moose and Squirrel after Rocky and Bullwinkle and hoped that very few viewers took Boris's and Natasha's attempts to do harm seriously. 

Comment by JoseG on April 16, 2013 at 3:12pm
Sometimes the best way to handle a negative review is with 100 positive reviews. When the positive overwhelm the negative a smart consumer will overlook the negative. It's amazing how many brides comment on the "glowing" reviews they read about us..never mentioning something they did not read that was stellar. Usually a well written response that does not attack and simply explains your version of the story shows that you are sensitive to what happened. This may even get the original review updated with the negative comment removed...you have now regained their respect.
Comment by Christine Dyer on April 16, 2013 at 8:44pm

I love all of your comments.  Thank you for your added advice.  And JoseG - I TOTALLY agree!

Comment by Jugee Mortel on April 16, 2013 at 9:44pm

Great tips. Thanks for this!

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