Turning Criticism into Opportunity: 3 Effective Ways to Respond to Negative Feedback

Are you a restaurant owner who’s been dealing with negative comments online? Remember, every business will inevitably receive some bad feedback overtime, but it’s how you handle it that truly matters. First and foremost, take a deep breath and don’t let your emotions get the best of you. Responding to negative comments in a professional and gracious manner shows that you care about your customers and are willing to take responsibility for any mistakes. 

Having trouble dealing with negative comments? Try out these 3 simple ways that you can try while responding to unsatisfied customers.

1. Apologize for your mistake

Apologizing first is the key to calm down unhappy customers. It is important to let them know that you’re aware of the issue and are willing to take the responsibilities to make up for them. It is powerful for people to apologize, as it shows how one person acknowledges their responsibility for the harmful behaviors committed toward the other party and are willing to change to avoid future misunderstandings/ repeating it again. For instance, back in 2009, a video of how Domino’s employees unhygienically treated a customer’s pizza went viral on the internet, which had brought a huge crisis for the company. Domino’s CEO then quickly responded with a heartfelt apology video by reassuring the public about the company’s cleanliness standard. This example shows us how taking ownership and fixing the problem on time while apologizing is effective in gaining the public’s forgiveness. 

2. Thank them for the feedback 

Leaving feedback is very important for business owners as it lets them know exactly what their customers want or need. By doing so, it encourages them to provide products or services to fulfill customer satisfaction which can then increase customer loyalty. So no matter what kind of feedback you’re receiving, you should always show appreciation towards the customers who are willing to leave their experience down in order for you to improve in the future. This shows that your company has an open mind to receive feedback from others as you are eager to provide better services for the customers. Here’s an example of how a business owner thanked for feedbacks, even when it’s not a pleasant one. 

3. Ask for a second chance 

It is common for companies to ask for a second chance while apologizing. To gain back the trust from your customers, you can always ask for a second chance and offer to make things right. Create a specific plan for improvement and set achievable goals so that you can convince your customers that you’re worth the second chance that they gave. An example would be how Apple Music was being boycotted for not paying artists for any of their music that was played during a one-month free streaming trial for their users. To fix the situation, Apple enlisted the help of its SVP of Internet Software and Services, Eddy Cue to address this issue via Twitter. He then proposed a solution based on this situation to calm everyone down. 

At the end of the day, remember that bad comments do not reflect your entire business. Keep a positive attitude and continue to run your business with excellence! Your loyal customers will appreciate your efforts, and new customers will be drawn to your dedication towards customer satisfaction. So stop ignoring the negative comments and start replying to them now! 

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