The Dos and Don'ts of responding to a negative UGC Video

March 19, 2018

Well, it happened. You received a bad review from a vblogger or consumer. There it is on YouTube or another video site-a part of the public record. Alas, don’t despair; these things happen. Here are our recommendations on what to and not to do. When you receive a notification from Vyrill on your dashboard that a not-so-wonderful review came through take a deep breath and remember that bad online video reviews happen. It’s not the end of the world, and there are plenty of things you can do about it. Let’s get started. Step 1: Determine if the Review Needs a Response Sometimes reviews aren’t all that bad, and other times they’re outright vicious. Reviews that are factual but negative and predominantly just minor complaints can be ignored. If you feel you must post something, keep it short, thank them for their feedback and leave it at that. Step 2: Gather the Facts and Collect Your Thoughts You’ve seen the review, determined that it needs a response, and now it’s time to reply. Stop! Don’t reply at the moment; take a second to cool down, collect information about their complaint and get your thoughts together. When crafting your reply, make sure to thank them for bringing something to your attention, address legitimate concerns brought up in the review, and work to constructively resolve the issue. Stay incredibly neutral, and don’t forget to give them a name to put behind the reply, as well as a phone number or email address so they can get in touch if necessary. Above all else, ensure you have crafted an honest and genuine response. The vblogger will know if you are not. Step 3: Reply Privately With all the facts gathered and a cool, calm and collected mindset, you are now ready to get that reply to the reviewer. We recommend you send your response privately. In doing so you will establish a connection with the reviewer which may be highly effective in finding a resolution. If a resolution has been reached, feel free to mention to the person that you’d appreciate it if they would update their review to reflect things accordingly. Don’t ask them to take it down as that request may show that you are more interested in having a positive review than understanding their issue. Ultimately this step will accomplish two things. First of all, if everything goes as intended, you can reach a resolution and get the review changed, updated or removed. But more importantly, showing that you’ve replied to a review lets other viewers know you do care about delivering customer satisfaction, even when things aren’t so positive. Step 4: Reply Publicly Sometimes you might not have the luxury of being able to reply offline and when that happens, your reply will be public. This is both good and bad. Public replies can be bad because they can easily trigger the reviewer to continue to reply in an even worse manner. Some people don’t want a resolution, and you can’t fix that. That’s why it’s important to decide if the reviewer is just letting off steam or if there’s a valid complaint that needs addressing. On the other hand, public replies provide an opportunity to show others reading the reviews that you care enough to try and remedy the situation. With public replies, winning an argument with a frustrated customer is difficult, and it’s not the goal you should be working toward. Instead, aim for a resolution that satisfies the complaint, remedies your online reputation and doesn’t lash out at the reviewer. In your reply, remember to:

  • Be nice and keep things professional.
  • Don’t get personal.
  • Address legitimate concerns.
  • Keep it short and sweet.

As before, it’s important for you to provide some way for the reviewer to get in touch with you to discuss an issue further or to help provide a resolution. A name and either a phone number or email address work well. Best Practices While each video review site is different in subtle ways, there are some best practices that you should use regardless of the medium:

  • Even with the worst of the worst, thank the reviewer for reaching out to you.
  • Don’t lash out. Even if you’re right, it won’t end in your favor.
  • Use the same logic you would apply to a face-to-face interaction.
  • Work to find a resolve offline. A problem is more likely to escalate online and become more permanent.
  • Don’t respond while you’re angry. It won’t end well.
  • Present your case. If there are elements to a negative review that the reviewer isn’t mentioning that help your case, consider including them in your reply. Maybe you attempted to remedy the situation already and this person is just here to rant. Defend yourself, but only if you can do so without being aggressive.
  • Address legitimate concerns only.

Let us know if you found this information helpful.

About the Author

Katy boasts two decades in B2B technology & services, spearheading growth and brand evolution. A former Adobe marketing maven for 9 years, she’s since built growth teams for 5 tech startups that have all been acquired. With a stellar record in operational excellence and creating demand, she excels at leading successful cross-functional initiatives that enable companies to scale up.

Join thousands of people who get our video marketing, commerce, and SEO tips each month
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.