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What To Do About A Bad Review
We’ve all talked about bad reviews and what to do about them. The consensus is that you answer them in a constructive way that shows others that you are concerned about an unhappy customer.
Asking that customer to contact you shows you are ready to try and find a solution to the customer’s problem. Even if you can’t resolve it, people know that some customers have unrealistic expectations and will credit you for trying.
But what if the bad review is about you personally? The customer has mentioned your name in a disreputable way. How should you react to maintain your dignity and reputation?
It’s a bit bruising to see your name associated with words like sleazy, dishonest, liar, or worse. A natural instinct makes us want to lash out, discredit the customer, and defend our reputation. We can feel anger, hurt, outrage and want to put those feelings into writing as a response to the customer.
This, unfortunately, is counter-productive. We give credence to the claims if we are equally abusive to the customer who criticized us. I suggest the following:
1. Review the events in your mind. Did you do anything that may have given that customer a reason to believe the claims? Was it a misunderstanding? Or was the customer simply unreasonable in his expectations? Be honest with yourself.
2. If you did anything to create the situation or if there was simply a misunderstanding, apologize to the customer and ask for the opportunity to correct the situation.
3. If the customer had unreasonable expectations, simply apologize that you were unable to meet their expectations and state that there will always be times when people can’t agree.
It is human nature to react to unjust accusations with retribution, but by reacting politely and with sensitivity, you make yourself the more reasonable person in other’s eyes as they read the review and response. Take a deep breath and, don’t count to 10, count to 100.
Understand that dignity is self-evident and does not require a tit-for-tat response. Others can see that for themselves and will actually come to your defense. In fact by reacting without retribution… reacting with dignity, you may even get an apology from the accuser.