Posts Tagged ‘TripAdvisor’
We have been approached by many tourism companies both agents and hotels alike requestiong help with negative comments appearing about them on the search results. More often than n0t they come from sites like tripadvisor whose business model is based on customer feedback.
There are 2 big issues with this:
- You tend to get more genuine feedback from customers who have had a negative experience rather than a positive one.
- Competitors write negative things about another company which are false.
So quite often Tripadvisor will not give a overall balanced feedback from customers because the same old saying is true “a customer who has had a bad experience will tell a 100 people where a customer who has a good experience will tell 10″. Customers will normally only give feedback to a site like Tripadvisor if they have had a negative experience rather than a positive one.
We are also now seeing what we believe to be competitors writing bogus negative feedback about competing companies in order to trash their reputation. It’s very bad practice and something we frown on and will certainly not get involved in.
What can you do about negative comments on Tripadvisor?
- Make sure there is genuinely not an issue that needs addressing if many customers are complaining about the same thing.
- Offer customers a gift if they write something positive about their stay at your hotel on Tripadvisor
- Hire a company to help protect your reputation online and bury negative results in the search results.
The outcome, although you can’t get rid of negative comments totally is you can show a much more balanced view, in many ways this is much better than just positive or negative views.
One of the problem with many review sites across the Internet is that the reviews are presented in a timeless zone. Although reviews are dated, it is easy to forget that a critical review is actually two years old rather than last month. As a result changes in quality are difficult to assess without careful analysis of the different reviews and their dates.
One way to solve this would be to introduce reputation trend graphs which show how quality ratings are varying over time. Sure it was bad two years, but all the recent reviews demonstrate that this place/service is much better now. Since most review site collect metrics over time it would be easy to represent them in graphical form. Great for consumers and great for the businesses themselves.
Flyglobespan, British Airways, where does it stop, the tourist industry has been hammered with negative news and press. On the BBC last night they were talking about the average staff’s wages, the average BA cabin crew gets almost double what they get at Virgin. Either BA is paying way to much or Virgin is under paying either way there are no winners when figures like these are released.
The tourism industry as a whole is under attack with hotels reputation being tested with negative feedback on sites like Tripadvisor putting potential customers off. This latest news about Flyglobespan certainly will not help the industry, who wants to go abroad and worry about not getting back. The hotels miss out big time on all the destinations that Flyglobespan flew to. The knock on effect is massive, restaurants, shops, taxi drivers, the list goes on.
The Internet can be very one sided, hotels, air carriers, tour operators by the very nature of what they do have tens of 1000′s of customers. It is totally down to the laws of average that no matter what you do or how fantastic your customer service, you will have someone, somewhere not happy about the service. Obviously having a bad customer service and ignoring issues can compound negative press online. In the good old days word of mouth was normally the only place annoyed customers would vent their frustrations. With the dawn of the Internet came along blogs, social network site, forums and other avenues for people to write about a bad experience they might have had with a hotel, restaurant etc. Now the whole world can listen rather than just friends and family.
Customers who have had a very good experience do not often tell people about it unless asked, and they certainly don’t write about it, so because of this the Internet can become a company’s worst enemy rather than best friend.
Fixing this could be easier than you’d think, yes it does take time, resource and require systems in place, but done correctly it can not only help manage your reputation online but even attract more customers. Having for example a facility to capture customer feedback and publish them to the web is a good example.
The big lesson with PR and reputation management is don’t leave it until it becomes a crisis and you are loosing business, make sure you are take a proactive approach and protect your businesses reputation.