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Why a bad review is not always a bad review

By Mikaela Andersson

In life there is the good, the bad, and the invisible. The one thing you do not want to be in business is invisible and no business can please everyone every time, so you are going to get bad reviews on occasions. This is not necessarily a bad thing. It could even be an opportunity for you to showcase your great service. The true measure is how your business deals with bad reviews.

Here are three tips for turning bad reviews into good marketing:

What went wrong?
There is a Japanese proverb, “Fix the problem, not the blame.” Of course people want their problems fixed, but more often than not they have a deep burning desire for vengeance. They want to know who is to blame and what is being done about it. But this is all just a product of their frustration. What they really want is to know that you are taking them seriously. Demonstrate this by explaining what went wrong in a professional way and be transparent. Show that you have taken the time to uncover the truth regarding the issue that they have brought to your attention.

Make amends
Knowing what went wrong and fixing the problem is not enough. Customers still want to apportion blame. The solution is to take the responsibility and the blame. Take personal ownership for the mistake and see what can be done to go beyond just fixing the problem. Apologies are cheap. You need to demonstrate that you understand what the customer is going through and validate them.

Shout it out
So you have received a bad review, you discovered what went wrong and you have taken responsibility for it. That still does not fix your marketing problem. Let the public see in an open forum what you have done for your customer, again, be open. Demonstrate it publicly. This showcases that you are serious about satisfying your customers and that you understand their needs. This also shows that you care and try to be transparent and helpful.

There is no such thing as a bad review. When things run smoothly people tend to take it for granted and unless you are truly stellar. See bad reviews as opportunities to improve.