Reviews: the good, the bad, the ugly…and how to handle them all.
To address bad reviews: Apologize. Empathize. Realize.
Apologize to the resident because they didn't have a great experience.
Empathize to show that you care about their thoughts and want to know how you can do better.
Realize and invite them to come up with a solution together. The goal here is to take it out of the public eye but also show that you are responsive.
TIP: Before responding, click on that person's profile. If that person seems like all they want to do is fight online, I recommend not responding. You would know this if their personal posts are constantly complaining or targeting other businesses and their bad experiences. Sometimes people just like to "troll" and it's best not to engage if that is the case.
Define Troll: In Internet slang, a troll is a person who starts quarrels or upsets people on the Internet to distract and sow discord by posting inflammatory and digressive, extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community (such as a newsgroup, forum, chat room, or blog) with the intent of provoking readers into displaying emotional responses and normalizing tangential discussion, whether for the troll's amusement or a specific gain. Wikipedia
Fill in the blank response example:
Insert Name, we are so sorry to hear about your experience. We truly care about our residents and those who visit our community and are always looking for ways to improve [insert problem area they mentioned]. Please send us a private message with your contact information and we would love to reach out and discuss a solution. Again, thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts.
How to Combat Negative Reviews: Bury Them With Good Experiences
Focus on resident appreciation! Small things that make a big difference like candy at their door, sodas at the gate, etc. You need to create more positive moments in-person first before it will translate online.
Get ahead of problems before they become public. Surveys are a great way to do that or even including a line in your signature that encourages residents and prospects to share their feedback via email. This way at least if you are going to get bad feedback, you get it in a private way. Most people write bad reviews for the public because they don't feel like they will be heard anywhere else.
Random acts of kindness that are personalized. Having an average experience isn't enough to write a good review. You have to go above and beyond in a random way that surprises your resident or prospect to make them take that extra step.
How to Encourage More Reviews
Remind residents about reviews during the good times when they sign their lease, move-in to their homes, etc.
Have your team add links to places to review your community in their email signatures
Including a flyer about reviews in your marketing brochure or in your leasing contact packet
Throwback Thursday or Flashback Friday: Reshare old reviews to get people to continue to review.
Customize the Review Squares in the free designs section: https://member.watchyourbusinesssprout.com/promo-designs
Search "Review" in our design search either customize a design or use one of our instant printables. Post these around the community where people tend to gather and place in units after the maintenance team completes a request. I attached my fav: https://member.watchyourbusinesssprout.com/complete-search.
Host a contest for reviews. Review on a specific platform between a specific time frame and be entered to win a prize! Winner will be chosen randomly (use this site) and content of the review will not be considered in our selection process.
Do a simple in-person reminder every time your team interacts with a resident or prospect. Say something like this at the end of a conversation (preferably when a conversation is going well): If you don't mind, we would love if you could post a review on [insert platform]! I know other residents would love to hear about your experience and it would mean the world if you could leave a quick review!
No more bad reviews here!