How To Gain & Maintain a 5-Star Online Reputation (PART 3)
TRANSCRIPT: All right. Let’s jump ahead now. We’re in step 2. We’re going to determine the voracity. Some of you are probably like, “Well Steve, that’s a big word. What’s that mean?” Voracity just means true. We’re going to find out are the reviews true? We gauge what people have said about us. We’ve put it into these departments, we compartmentalize our issues. These are a specific type of issue, this is a specific shift where we’re having issues. Now we got to determine if it’s true, but I want you to understand as we determine the voracity, you are who they say you are, right? It doesn’t matter who you are in real life. If somebody says, “By far the worst car buying experience I’ve ever had” or they say “They are sneaky, rude people who are condescending during the car shopping process” or “Rip off artists” or “Steer clear of this dealership,” if people say these things about you, that’s who you are.
Consumers are going to believe what they’re going to believe. Let me make sure that you understand something about consumers and perception. There are 2 sayings that will always hold true with consumers. Saying number 1, the customer is not always right but they are always the customer, and number 2, perception is reality. Those are absolute truths. The customer’s not always right but they are always the customer and perception is reality, so it doesn’t matter whether these things are true or not necessarily, so remember these 2 things as you investigate issues.
All right. “What if it’s just a social rant, Steve?” Sometimes people are just looking for ways to vent and social media’s quick and easy, right? Their complaint might be minor but given the megaphone in Twitter or Facebook, they can make even a minor issue seem exponentially more important, so I want you to take these just as seriously as you do written reviews on Yelp or Google as you’re investigating to determine their voracity. Now did you group everything by type of review, by type of issue and department? You got to go out and find out now with your team, are these review true? Asked those involved to explain what happened in their own words. Does what your team says job with the negative review? If no, then ask yourself this.
If my team says this happened and the reviewer said this happened, ask yourself why would the customer lie. Because customers will lie but I want to make sure that I understand. There are some reasons customers would never lie. It’s also possible in a lot of review situations to go ahead and ask the customer who left the review. Ask them to explain a little bit further, ask them to name names if they didn’t in the review, and then ask your team, “What have we done to resolve this so far? What did we do to resolve this issue when it happened?” If we’ve determined it’s true, we’ve got to determine, number 2, do these conditions still exist? I want to observe.
If somebody said something bad is happening in my service drive, I want to go out and observe that and ask, find out what steps have been taken to prevent this issue in the future, but when we ask these questions of our managers, we need to demand specifics, not generalities. It takes a little bit of leadership here, so when we ask them a question, “Hey, how did we resolve this issue or how did we resolve that issue,” okay? They start to give you generalities, you need to learn 2 words in leadership. The 2 strongest words in leadership are “Show me.”
A customer complained that the rooms were dirty in our hotel, okay? She said there were roaches and we’ll see a review that says that later, and I own this hotel and I go to the manager and I say, “Hey, what have we done to get rid of the roaches,” and he said, “Well, we’ve had the exterminator in and we do a daily check and we found that there are no roaches.” You know what I’m going to say? I’m going to say, “Great. Show me.” Take me through the rooms. I want to see for myself because I’ve got to understand that if I don’t fix what’s going on, if I don’t find out that these things are true and these things are being repaired, then I could be out of business. Remember, it just takes 1 negative review to lose 22% of our business.