So, a disgruntled customer/client takes their aggravation out on your company in an online forum. Justified or not, that requires action. You counter by encouraging customers and clients who have benefitted from your products or services to post positive reviews to the same forum. Several do but nowhere do you see those posts, just that glaring negative one. What gives?
That’s a scenario several business owners have reported lately. Seems that there’s one online directory (it rhymes with the word help) that objects to positive comments in response to a negative one if those commenters have not posted before. While it’s difficult to understand this online directory’s policy, it leaves the business owner without a very important tool in defusing a toxic online comment. That’s why your online reputation strategy should always have a PR component.
Typically, we advise clients who have been victimized by a negative comment to issue a series of press releases with positive news about their company. Part of the distribution of said news release involves posting to online newsrooms, which spider quite nicely in Google. This may or may not knock the negative comment off the front page of a Google search. It will, however, will give that negative comment plenty of company–company that carries some third-party credibility.
Does this tactic prevent the bad comment from discouraging new business or prospects? It’s difficult to say the bad comment will have zero effect. Yet most consumers savvy enough to research reviews will go to more than one site for information. Chances are multiple positive news stories will be enough to trump one bad review and enhance your online reputation in the process.