Day 33 – The Puzzle – Bad Restaurant Reviews & Negative Comments On Social Media

Bad reviews for your restaurant, how do you handle them?

Hate online and on social media, how do you handle it?

Facebook groups where anyone and everyone can throw shade your way, how do you handle it?

Let’s face it, we all get it and we all are going to continue to get it.  If you’re taking ANY ACTION in life critics are coming your way.  And on top of that, none of us are perfect every day, so guess what we actually WILL GIVE BAD service and products.  

So here is the secret, you must have this mentality as it relates to the actual review…DON’T CARE!  STILL DON’T CARE!

And when I say that, I’m not saying you’re going to ignore the review and what you can learn from it.  I’m saying you can’t let it affect you AT ALL. It can’t make your mind wonder. It can’t make you question your team.  It can’t make you have stomach pains.  You have to accept that every day, you’re going to either make a mistake and get a bad review, or made someone mad who gives you a bad review.  It’s a simple fact.

Let’s take the review up top for example.  This customer bought your pizza through a 3rd party delivery service.  They said it wasn’t edible.  If this was my restaurant how would I handle this?

1st – I’d comment something like the following ” CUSTOMERS first name, I’m sorry.  This really stinks and I’m as upset as you are, we 100% take responsibility for this and want to fix it.  I have a few questions about this order that I’d love your help with, if you could call me at 888-888-8889 (your cell phone #).  Thats my cell phone and I’m the owner.  3rd Party services are something we are evaluating to see if it’s a great idea for our restaurant, since we can’t control the time they pick it up and the delivery time sine they are not our employee.  Also, you mention “thinner than usual” which leads me to believe you’ve dined with us before and I want to know more about your past experiences since this is the only review I see from you.  Please call my cell # above so I can make sure your next pizza is taken care of and we can rebuild your trust in our company.

– For this reply you are simply trying to tell your story and make them 100% right.  75% of people will not call you, they will not reply. BUT a lof of customers looking to try you for the first time will look at your response and be blown away.  

2nd – You need to get with 5 friends and order your pizza from Uber Eats (specific to this instance).  Have you tried our product through these 3rd party apps? And not from your own account, your employees will see that.  From other people’s accounts, this will allow you to mystery shop your restaurant and understand if there’s an issue you need to address in your restaurants operations.  

3rd – Keep a chart of your bad reviews and add this it.  You need to see if there are any trends, anything to approach your team about.  

4th -Don’t raise a red flag on this to your team.  Imagine if you scream this from the mountain tops to your team and it’s 1 out of 100 instances. Is it worth putting doubt in their mind?  Now if your chart from point 3 above shows a trend, of course you’re going to IDS this (Identify, Discuss, Solve).

And then YOU’RE DONE!  Don’t beat yourself up, worry about what others think, etc.  Move on. Bad reviews, orders gone wrong and hate are all part of the game.  And yes, I understand it’s tough to stomach, but we all must get used to it. 

In episode 588 of my podcast, Restaurant Marketing Secrets, I discuss this exact topic…HAVE A LISTEN, CLICK HERE!

Thanks

Matt