Online criticism can be a valuable source of intelligence that property managers turn to their advantage, a real estate marketing strategist believes.
Stepps digital marketing consultancy founder Josh Cobb told Residential Property Manager that agencies should be “embracing negative reviews”, not trying to remove them from public view.
“Never delete a negative review – make sure you leave it there, because everyone will see your attempts to try to rectify the situation,” Mr Cobb said.
He said it is important to acknowledge the negative commentary by apologising for the person’s bad experience and providing a direct contact number to take the conversation offline: “The number one strategy is to try to take the online offline.”
He said agencies should also make sure the response on social media comes from an actual person and not the company’s online persona.
“If they don’t respond, follow it up – don’t just leave it. If they respond negatively again, just keep trying to take it offline and take the heat out of the situation.”
Mr Cobb said the most critical factor is to find out why the person is complaining. Agencies should also treat negative reviewers as valuable sources of intelligence, he added.
“They are the people you should be thanking – because there are plenty who don’t like your company who are not talking about it on social media, but in their own personal circles.
“They are the people you should be really worried about, because they are not taking the time and effort to tell you what they think.”
Mr Cobb said social media is a “spectator sport” and when people see a negative review they can’t help but have a look at the stream of comments.
“The thing is, if you can be seen to be controlling the conversation it can turn the situation around positively in your favour.”
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