Any business entity that is active online and communicates with a high volume of consumers, web visitors and existing customers is going to receive their fair share of attention on various reviews, blogs and social media sources. And, it's a safe bet some of those comments may not be 100 percent positive. Let's face it, no business entity can completely satisfy their customers all the time. In addition, it is difficult to remove scathing comments from consumer review sites.
There's a fair amount of chatter these days about how a business manager should respond to negative reviews and blog posts. Some may believe it is best to ignore the remarks, hoping to limit the banter with those posting critical comments. However, the common belief today is that business entities should quickly reply to negative remarks.
It should be noted that if you are unaware of what others are posting about your business, then you need to subscribe to a service such as LocalReputation.com. In this era where consumers are searching for reviews, blogs, social media and other online information, any entity not using such services basically has its head in the sand and is operating blind when it comes to consumers' online interaction with their company.
When you spot a critical blog or social media comment, it shows respect for the consumer and a high level of professionalism to address the comment promptly. It is not wise to get into a lengthy debate. Simply assure the blog readers how the comment is inaccurate and if it is correct, explain how the incident was rare and that steps were taken to prevent any repeat problems.
More importantly, the business manager or online marketing director must be diligent to contact the consumer who posted the negative comment. You want to make sure the consumer's issues are addressed, and you want to make certain the criticism stops there. Let's face it, there are many review sites, blogs and other opportunities for consumers to post online comments. If the problems are not quickly resolved, then the negative comments may start appearing in multiple locations, creating a serious situation for your business reputation.
The bottom line -- it is best to make a little effort to track down those who post negative reviews and comments. The few moments spent resolving the problem could save your business reputation and prevent revenue from walking out your door.