How To: Respond to Negative Feedback
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Receiving negative feedback isn’t fun for anyone involved: The unhappy customer has spent their time and resources on a product or service that they aren’t satisfied with, the provider didn’t live up to their expectation and the business’ credibility is hurt. How can you gracefully fix this situation while retaining the unhappy customer? Follow these simple steps to reverse your unhappy customers opinion.
1. Identify the problem & customer’s disposition
The customer is clearly angry in this review because they were kicked out of a restaurant that they frequent. They are also angry because they believe that they were kicked out due to racial bias. The manager and hostess were identified as the “culprits” in this review. Whether this review is 100% honest or not, you must treat it as if it is. The customer ALWAYS comes first.
2. Respond to the customer feedback ASAP
Timing is EVERYTHING. The restaurant who received this review responded to the review weeks later. This makes them appear to have bad time management skills as well as being careless and not concerned with their customer service. The customer is clearly speaking in an angry tone so it is important to respond to all issues in the review with neutral wording. NEVER fight fire with fire, especially in the world of business because credibility is EVERYTHING.
Example message: Good Afternoon *insert customer name.* We apologize for the way that you were treated at our restaurant on *insert date here.* We have spoken with our management and hostess staff to ensure that a situation such as this will not occur again. We are an inclusive restaurant that does its best to serve all customers with five star service. We would like to invite you back to *insert restaurant name* to give us another chance and try one of our famous dessert dishes, complimentary. Thank you for your review. Your feedback matters.
3. Determine a remedy
4. Make sure that it doesn't happen again
To ensure that this issue does not occur again and future negative reviews can be avoided, speak to staff members about the situation. Get their insights and opinions on what happened and work with them to make sure they have proper training in regards to the conflict. It’s better to be proactive and keep the negative experience from occurring instead of having to do damage control.
Written by Grace Goldberg - gracemaxexpo