Got A Bad Review?

 Be Responsive, Not Defensive

Public relations is designed, theoretically, to let you put your best foot forward. Its where and how you get the attention you deserve, the attention that will drive you and your message forward.  But sometimes that’s not what happens. The design collapses and you actually feel like you are losing your footing. Reports and reviews aren’t adding up to the message you and your public relations team carefully and diligently worked on and then delivered.

It cannot be said enough that intentions matter but that actual results may be more reaction than anything else. And reactions, by their nature, are often very difficult to control. So what do you do when reviewers suggest that your message isn’t on track? That your product or services don’t match their promise?

We know that the first response is to take a deep breath. Let’s face it, there are times when our best efforts do fall flat, when it’s not what we think it should be. When the media thinks that, too.

According to George Beall, a Huffington Post blogger, there are some things you can do help repair the damage that may have occurred.

“Whether it’s a rant on a popular social media site such as Yelp or Facebook, or a scathing review from a professional critic, in order to survive as a company, you and your team must learn the art of response. The best way to learn? Observe others who have dealt with the same.”

He’s so right. Learning from the mistakes and successes of others in similar situations (and industries) may be the best tactic yet to overcome the unwanted and, perhaps sometimes, undeserved critical attention.

We agree with him that lashing out and ‘hitting back’ will not help you maintain credibility with those you are trying to reach. Is there a kernel of truth in the responses? If so, the sooner you can own up to that, the better. From there it’s a matter of rectifying and/or clarifying an oversight or exaggeration that may have triggered the negative feedback.

Taking time to learn to respond with grace under pressure is much more effective and productive than being defensive and aggressive. In the final analysis, the way you handle a situation says more about you than had there never been a unflattering review in the first place.

To read the full Huffington Post article, click here

Related Information: Crisis Media Spokesperson 


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