More threads by Garrett Sussman

Mar 15, 2016
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4 Self-Destructive Review Management Worst Practices To Avoid


Are you making any of these mistakes? The ones considered to be the online review management worst practices?

The kind of mistakes that rub customers the wrong way, complicates your review management and hurts your revenue? When it comes to online review management, there are a lot of bad habits floating around. Some of these mistakes are obvious while others aren't.

Then there's the worst of the bunch.

The silent killers. The mistakes that erode your conversion rate, customer goodwill and your profits.

These bad habits are the worst, but they don't look that way

Quite the opposite in fact.

Ask insiders about these mistakes and you'll see the alarm in their face. Ask outsiders and they'll draw a blank. Almost inevitably they ask, "what's the big deal?"

Most don't care.

They're focused on maintaining the status quo. Putting out fires, avoiding pain, consequences or trouble. This attitude is subtle but it's everywhere. Even worse, this attitude is a breeding ground for the horrible mistakes we'll cover today.

These mistakes do their destructive work quietly.

Let's take a look.

Mistake #1: Dysfunctional, haphazard marketing

Good review management begins with precise marketing. If you're getting more negative reviews than you'd like your marketing may be the problem. Haphazard marketing invites these toxic customers into your business.

These toxic customers tend to be entitled. They expect you to bend over backwards for a chance to earn their business. Fail to please them and they'll leave nasty reviews. These customers typically come in 5 toxic varieties but their goal remains the same.

To take as much as they can from you.

1. The Arranger manipulates circumstances, deals and events. These customers want everything to be win/lose in their favor. Arrangers demand custom options that don't exist, push for concessions that only benefit them or change terms and agreements.


The Arranger looks for flexibility. They comb through your marketing looking for a few specific ingredients (a.) A fear of losing the business and (b.) An unhealthy willingness to be flexible.

Handing out free estimates to any customer who asks, stating "the customer is always right" or "we're here to make you happy" attracts Arrangers.

2. The Corrupter is a liar.
You can count on them to be consistently dishonest and unethical. They'll do or say anything to get what they want. The lie to your face, ask you to lie for them or pester you to do morally questionable things.

Like demanding a refund for half eaten pizzas.

Check this video to see what I mean.

Corrupters are attracted to marketing that shows (a.) you have poor boundaries and (b.) No quid pro quo (this for that). If customers ask for a concession, they should be willing to give one in return. Companies with strong boundaries, clear policies and the ability to say No repel Corrupters.

3. The Disruptor craves control. These customers will accept nothing less. These are the customers that boss your employees around. They refused to use your products as intended, demand special treatment and throw epic tantrums when they don't get their way.


Disruptors are drawn to marketing messages like:

  • Have it your way
  • The customer is king
  • Designed around you

Marketing messages like these scream you're in control. Revoke that control at any time during the relationship and Disruptors look to retaliate.

4. The Slanderer uses guilt, shame and fear to punish and control. These customers play the role of persecutor. They use insults, threats, bullying - anything they can to get you to break. When you lose your cool they quickly become a victim, using your behavior as justification. To break their promises, push for concessions or seek revenge.


Slanderers probe for weakness. If your business lacks measurable uniqueness you're vulnerable. The Slanderer pings your sales, marketing and customer service teams with guilt, fear and shame. They believe there's nothing special about your business. Will remind you often, using that as their "in" to get what they want.

  • Bah your product is overpriced!
  • You guys try too hard. You’re trying to be something you’re not.
  • What makes you so special?
  • You guys are lucky to have me as a customer.

Then, they watch how you respond. Beg for their business, fall for their tricks and they'll do their best to wear you down in the process.

5. The Schemer hunts for loopholes. They're resourceful customers, searching for a way over, under, around or through your rules. These customers are all about gaming the system, your system.


Do you make promises to your customers in your marketing? Does your product or service come with a guarantee? Watch out! Schemers target these areas first.

Schemers look for ways to extract as much as they can from your business without giving you anything in return. A 90 day guarantee with no boundaries, conditions or requirements is a schemers paradise. They'll use your incomplete promises to extract refunds, free products, incentives and more indefinitely.

Fail to keep your promises and Schemers become hostile.

These toxic customers are drawn to needy, insecure and dysfunctional marketing.


How do you create marketing that's healthy and precise? The kind that attracts wonderful reviews, draws in amazing customers and generate lots of revenue? It's actually pretty simple. You run your marketing through a filter. Three filters to be exact.

1. You're a negotiator. There's only three ways to exist in a relationship. As a tyrant, slave or negotiator. Average or unremarkable companies are slaves to their customers. This entices customers to play the role of tyrant. Great companies exist as negotiators, creating value for customers and themselves.

2. You're in demand. A steady flow of traffic, leads and sales eliminates desperation almost completely. There's no need to be obsessed with a particular prospect if you have 50 or more waiting to talk with you. Good marketing keeps your business in demand.

3. You can say No. When you're in demand you can say No. While you'd hate to lose a customer, it won't break you. Good marketing gives you power and the ability to approach potential customers as equals. As a negotiator.

Great marketing primes the review management pump, cultivating authority, credibility and respect for your business.

Read the rest of Andrew's post here to see the 3 other major review management worst practices to avoid.


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