An online review isn’t a one-to-one conversation; it will be seen by hundreds or thousands of people. As such, it’s important to address negative reviews quickly and honestly.
Feedback, whether positive or negative, needs to happen for any business to grow, gain credibility, and build trust. Perhaps you have problem caregivers or need to incorporate a caregiver mentor program for proper training. Maybe your office staff isn’t up to speed on how to adequately schedule caregivers. Bad reviews are inevitable. It’s nearly impossible to control what your clients say about your home care business. When a negative review comes along, it’s difficult to brush it off, especially when reviews appear across multiple online platforms. Fortunately, we have five secrets to combating negative reviews and resolving issues with unsatisfied clients.
Secret #1 – Respond quickly
Letting a negative review remain stagnant for an extended period can look untrustworthy and will give off the wrong vibe to both the critic and those who come across the complaint. You need to show your clients you care and value their opinions, even when negative or difficult. Don’t leave generic response either. Make it personalized and specific to their problem. Handle the reviews promptly and politely, and you will have better success turning your detractor clients into promoters!
Secret #2 – Contact Information
When you leave the response to a complaint, provide your phone number and email so you can take the conversation offline. If you know who posted the negative comment, take the time to contact them via phone or email to resolve the issue. Once you feel confident the client is happy, go back to their online review and leave a brief comment for the public to see the situation has been resolved and thank the client for helping them make your home care agency a better place.
Secret #3 – Find a Solution
Don’t make excuses for all the reasons a client could be upset, even if you aren’t at fault. Go the extra mile and make sure everything (and everyone) has had their issues resolved. Permanently fix the problem. Let them know your process in hiring caregivers and provide an outline for an action plan which will manage the base cause of the problem. After speaking with the client, take proactive steps to make sure it doesn’t happen in the future. The best thing you can do for an unhappy client is to listen to their concerns and be polite. Make them feel valued, and you are taking their complaints very seriously.
Secret #4 – Don’t Hide From Your Mistakes
When you receive a bad review, don’t delete it or try to bury it and leave a canned response. Own up to your mistakes and try to resolve the issue. Do whatever you can to make the critic feel heard and valued by your company. Try to make it right, instead of trying to make it go away. Clients will respond better to a humble business who is honest about their mistakes.
Secret #5 – See the Positive in the Negative
While many would tend to believe all positive reviews are the best, the reality is a mix of great, good, and poor reviews is more believable to those researching your home care agency. There are several reasons why you should view a bad review as a good thing. They provide you an opportunity to engage with detractors from your agency and demonstrate to potential clients you are willing to work through and resolve issues. Negative reviews help you learn from your mistakes and assist you in viewing things from your client’s point of view. Sometimes, as a manager you can get caught up so much in the business, you forget the real reason, or the WHY, behind your decision to start a home care agency.
It’s all about the public’s perception of your home care agency. In the past, word of mouth used to be the only way to refer consumers to a product or business. If bad things were said about your business, you often weren’t aware of it. However, today, the digital world holds an increasing number of your reviews. It’s crucial you have a digital presence, whether it’s through social media or other online review platforms, and you handle reviews and feedback with professionalism.
Home Care Pulse knows the importance of negative and positive feedback in shaping your online reputation. Our quality management program is all about understanding the thoughts and opinions your clients and caregivers have about your home care agency and taking actions to improve their experience and perceptions. Not only will we interview a handful of your clients each month, but we will also interview your caregivers as well to ensure your turnover rate stays low. To help increase your online presence, we have integrated with Caring.com to publish verified client and caregiver reviews we receive through our quality management program. Request a demo with a member of our Business Development team and learn how you can get started!