We here at TSM are able to run Facebook pages, Twitter profiles and execute well thought out marketing strategies with a variety of clients and we’re quite proud of this fact. But we also believe that there are some parts of social media that should simply be obvious.

Why?

Because they’re obvious.

Now we’re not referring to the more intricate elements of running a Facebook campaign, cross branding or data analysis. Those are genuinely difficult things to do and we are happy to provide our clients with results. We’re talking more about the…’why would you do that?’ sort of elements. Like…fining someone $500 if they leave a negative review of your hotel. 

That’s the sort of thing that makes us want to bang our heads against the wall and just scream: “WHAAAAAAAT?”

But why? Because that’s not how you build a trusted and loyal brand. That’s how you get blasted over the Internet for being bastards.

The purpose of reviews is to ensure that the a customer is heard. At times people will have a fantastic experience at a restaurant or hotel and want to rave about it. At other times it is because they have had a poor experience and want to condemn you for it. However no matter what you have to listen to reviews. You have to hear your customer, reply to them and tell them you’re going to make sure you will improve your service. It doesn’t matter if they’ve had poor service from a member of staff, a faulty elevator or the food was not up to par, it doesn’t matter. The purpose of the review is to warn other customers.

So what do you do? You don’t fine people or berate them for leaving bad reviews. You don’t ignore them or just assume people won’t notice.

You read them. You take notice. You fix whatever problems that they’ve suggested (if it is possible) and THEN you reply to the customer and apologise. You apologise for the fact that they had a poor experience at the hotel and invite them back again. You tell them the changes that you’ve implemented because of them. You could retrain your service members, get your elevator fixed, resource your food….whatever needs to be done.

When people leave reviews it is not out of spite. It is (usually) not malicious. It is simply for the fact that they want to be HEARD. They want their grievances acknowledged and they want you to fix them.

THAT is how you create a loyal fan base. By making sure that you’re there to listen to them.

Not forcing them to pay for every poor review.