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How to Respond to a Negative Review

Two Christian women who have a podcast are standing with their arms up over their heads because they know how to respond to negative reviews from their customers.

It’s really a matter of when, not if, you are going to get a bad review. We’re in part 2 of Mastering the Customer Review Game this week and we’re tackling the dreaded bad review. What do we do? How do we respond? What can we learn. We’re breaking it all down on today’s women in business podcast and learning how to respond to negative reviews. 

Not Everyone is Going to Love You…and That’s OK

Facing the reality that not everyone is going to love you is tough. But when we can focus on who we are and whose we are, it keeps bad reviews in perspective. We are more than what we produce, and what we produce isn’t going to be for everyone. Take a deep breath, examine if the review is someone who is just angry or if it is a justified review and it warrants your reflection. 

Take a Step Back and Pray

As hard as it may be, take a moment to take a step back. This isn’t the time to respond without thinking! Write out an email (leave the email address off to avoid an accidental send) and get your raw emotions out there. Then give it some space. 24 hours is a good amount of time. Sleep on it. Pray about it.  And then you need to own your part of the problem. At this point in the process, having an outside perspective can be really helpful.  

How To Respond to Negative Reviews

You need to respond. This can happen privately via an email, a phone call, or a text. Handling it this way is typically a good first step before taking it public. Either way, you need to take the emotion out of it. Go to the facts of the case. Use your contract, recite dates and figures, refer to emails or prior communication about what you promised to deliver.  Did you deliver and you need to explain this to the upset client? Or, did you not meet the commitment and need to take a step to fix that disconnect?

In handling someone who is upset with your services, it is also important to remember that they might just want to feel seen and heard. Listening to them and trying to offer a solution doesn’t mean you have to give them something for free to make it right. 

If handling the situation privately does not resolve the situation, you can reply directly to their review in a public space. Be sure to include facts and details and not emotions or accusations. Then when someone else comes across that negative review can see how you  handled it. 

Don’t Be Too Hard on Yourself 

This can be a great opportunity to learn and improve both yourself and your business.  Can you improve a workflow? There might be some small tweaks in your business you can change that would improve your product or service for the future. Use the feedback to get better. 

And above all, take the pressure off of yourself…let God be the center of your business.  

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