Prelude: The concept for this post was provided by ReputationManagement.com, a leading provider of premier relationship management services.
As any creator knows, the publication of any type of creation, be it blogs, videos, or podcasts, brings with it fear that whatever you have made may not be received positively. People come from a great rainbow of backgrounds, learning, experiences and opinions, and what may be a common view to you may be an anathema to another person. There has been blogs that I've written in the past that I haven't promoted as widely as normal, or that I've avoided from promoting on a certain social media channel, because of the fear of negativity.
But when it comes to businesses, negativity can have a long and lasting impact. Recently I was booking a hotel for my wife, and we were looking at three hotels, trying to make a choice on which to book. We ended up going for the most expensive one, which was a good £20-30 more than the others.
Because the one we booked had a rating of 4.3 out of 5, whilst the other two had ratings of 3.5 and 3.6 out of 5. Paying a bit more made sense. So those negative reviews - which may well have been spurious, or from some time ago - had pushed me towards a certain decision. And it's not unusual for buyers to read reviews, looking for that one negative review that changes the decision to buy.
I'm a firm believer that organisations need to directly handle and resolve negative feedback swiftly, to the satisfaction of the customer. Of course there is always the occasional client that is just being unreasonable, but putting these people to one side, by quickly dealing with negative feedback organisations can turn viewpoints around.
As an example of this, I complained on Twitter about a particular service. Very quickly, the brand in question contacted me, and offered a resolution. My view of that brand went full circle, from negative to positive, and if I had subsequently written a review for that brand it would have been wholly positive.
Whilst investing in social media monitoring may seem like an additional cost, I do believe that organisations of the current - and more so of the future - must consider it as a core element of their customer service budget.
If a situation ever gets out of hand and you need help putting together a plan of action for damage control, there are crisis management services that can help.