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What to do with bad reviews

After working so hard to build companies, promote events or launch product lines, getting a bad review is a gut punch. We feel misunderstood and rudely judged. All by someone we’re certain doesn’t have any idea how hard we work every day in business. 


Keep bad reviews in perspective--don’t let them outweigh the value of good reviews and positive personal interactions that happen everyday in your business. See negative feedback as an opportunity. Respond in a way that puts your character on display and shows the trolls that you won't be deterred.


We’ve all had our feelings hurt by typed text. Each of us internalize negative feedback in our own way. Doing a little soul-searching is healthy. Finding ways to improve and learn from our mistakes are both important. Looking for solutions in new processes or better communication can help. But, there is no point at which responding with more negativity is helpful.

Our advice, don’t take it personally

Review platforms are on the rise and managing them is time consuming. Asking for  positive reviews can get dicey. Ignoring bad reviews can be a death wish. Canned responses are deemed disingenuous. Advantage Marketing employs top-tier technology to make responding to reviews a manageable piece of online reputation management. Still, from time to time, clients are caught wasting time and energy feeling personally attacked by negative reviews.  


Negative ratings and rude comments abound on the Internet. Here is what doesn’t work in response --being defensive, going into every detail about every angle of the encounter in question, sarcasm, blaming the reviewer or name-calling of any kind. Basically, returning negative reviews with negative replies will never get you headed in the right direction. 


If for no other reason, respond with positivity for personal reasons. Writing a negative reply to a negative review is a waste of your energy and the most precious resource we have as entrepreneurs--time. You will not earn future business with negative responses to criticism. 


Take the high road. Don’t take it personally. Advantage Marketing knows this is easier said than done. Our businesses and the services they provide are our creations and we are protective of them. When criticized, it often helps to step back and ask for an outside perspective.

Respond accordingly 

In every instance of a bad review, try to move the conversation offline. Connect personally with a phone call or email directly to the disgruntled customer. Online, leave a brief reply indicating that you hear the complaint and intend to contact them to better understand what happened and how it can be corrected. 


Respond in a way that wins over future readers of your reply. Consider the many people who check reviews in advance of purchasing. They only hope to see that if a problem comes up, they can count on you to care about fixing it. Remember that your response is going to live online and the audience is way broader than the person who originally posted. Everyone knows that mistakes happen. Your reply to a negative review indicates whether or not you care about your customers’ concerns. 


Many Advantage Marketing clients engage the agency to manage online reviews. Only one element of overall reputation management, online reviews are a beast of burden for many business owners. For helpful ideas and day-to-day management of digital feedback for your business or organization, reach out to Advantage Marketing. If you’re already a client please, by all means, leave a review.