Featuring your Oak Brook business on local business directory websites like Google, Yelp, Bing, City Search, and Yahoo is a crucial piece of the online marketing puzzle. But when a bad review starts to sour your small business’s reputation, what should you do? How do you save it?

When a negative review pops up out of nowhere, it is typical to want to hide and go through the five stages of grief:

Denial — I don’t think this review means anything. First of all, I don’t think anybody is going to see it. And even if someone does, it’s not going to affect my business.

Anger — How dare this person try to sabotage my business’s name!

Bargaining/Rationalization — I should contact the customer and ask them to remove the negative review. This is not good for my business.

Depression/Despair — That’s it! My business is over.

Acceptance — Some customers are difficult to please. Maybe I can’t reasonably expect to keep all of my customers happy?

Acceptance is a risky place to stop at once you have cycled through the five stages. The truth is that negative reviews will most definitely affect your Oak Brook business. After all, many modern buyers rely heavily on online reviews before trusting a local business and making purchasing decisions. With that being said, a proactive approach is the secret to turning negative reviews into a positive thing for your business.

A positive thing?

In the good old days of marketing, companies typically spent fortunes trying to collect honest feedback so they could work on things to improve their product and service offerings. Today, the Internet provides us with that feedback for free. It is public, but the information is still useful.

Here’s how you can turn those lemons of negative reviews into lemonade for your business:

Objectively analyze the review.

This is a tricky one, and even more so if you have a lot of pride in your business, which most of us do. Take a deep breath and calmly (and objectively) try to analyze the review for its good and bad points, if possible.

Examine the three Ps of your marketing mix

Product, Price, and Placement: These are the three Ps of your marketing mix — the heart and soul of your Oak Brook business. Typically, if you encounter a few poor reviews online, you may have a problem with one of these three P’s that needs to be addressed.

Are you getting negative reviews about your product or service offerings? This could mean that your product or service offerings are flawed — if so, it is recommended that you head back to the drawing board and make serious reforms.

Are you getting complaints about your prices being too high? If so, you may want to fine tune your price positioning based on the market.

Negative comments about delivery of products or customer support? It may be time to calibrate your overall placement/distribution model.

Be quick

A bad review can burn a hole in your online reputation. You can help avoid this by responding publicly to the review in a professional and reasonable manner. Address the issue and talk about how you are going to solve it. Your willingness to interact with the reviewer and work out a solution will surely impress a potential customer.

Looking for a Professional Listings Management Agency in Oak Brook, Illinois?

Online reviews are part of the digital marketing era. Take advantage of the extra exposure and reap the rewards. Do you have too much on your plate to stay on top of your local listing and customer feedback? If so, we can help. As a leading listings management agency in Oak Brook, Illinois, Digital Destination can help you strengthen your business’s online presence. Contact us today to get started.