Last week, we spoke about the importance of receiving constructive criticism with courteousness in mind. Just yesterday, iRISEmedia was horrified to learn that one restaurant owner in Cleveland crossed the line and responded to a customer’s feedback on Yelp in a demeaning, racist, and inexcusable manner.

This story hits close to home because just a few weeks ago I faced a similar issue. I made a complaint against one of the biggest telecommunications companies in Canada about a security breach that I felt was uncalled for and should have be addressed immediately. When the management refused to call me back and was not willing to take ownership of the problem, I decided to cancel my services. Instead of calling me back or addressing the issue, they slapped me with a $150 cancellation fee.

online reputation management

Going back to the story in Cleveland, Rucha Tan ate at Ninja City, and left the Cleveland-based Asian-fusion restaurant a negative review on Yelp. The restaurant owner and chef Bac Ngyuyen is not one who will sit in reticence as his reputation is being tarnished. He hunted down Tan and sent him some pretty disturbing messages.

Nguyen has since apologized for his messages to the customer. Despite the apology, Ninja City continued to tag Tan in social media posts that supported the restaurant.

Cleveland is undergoing a renaissance, drawing visitors and newcomers the nation and world over. As a Cleveland business owner, Nguyen has contributed to and benefited from this movement. His narrow-mindedness and bullying tactics against customers hurt more than this reputation. He hurt the country’s perception of Cleveland.

What Bac Nguyen Should have done…

INVEST IN ONLINE REPUTATION MANAGEMENT. It’s unfortunate that many companies are not investing in online reputation management and are not hiring the experts to help them resolve complaints and become proactive at incorporating feedback into their own practices. All this could have been avoided if the business owner had an objective party with no conflict of interest to respond.

There are two ways to do online reputation management and to deal with negative reviews: 1) address them; 2) bury them. If you’ve addressed the issue and the customer is still not satisfied, write a rebuttal on the same site and then work to bury negative reviews with more positive ones.

How do you go about in burying reviews? You will have to work to raise positive content higher in search engines, such as Google and Bing. While this doesn’t technically remove it from search engines, it does drastically decrease the chances of someone finding it when searching your name. In fact, 93% of people don’t even go past the first page, and even if they do, they’ve just gone through an entire page of positive content that lets them know who you really are.

Click here to see the messages. Please be advised that there is some coarse language in the messages, viewer discretion is advised.

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