In their last article, ‘So you got a bad review? Here’s what to do next’, Legal123 wrote about the Australian Consumer Law legalities of what businesses are permitted to do about bad reviews.
When researching the article on what to do about bad reviews we came across a few businesses that decided to take matters into their own hands with some ‘clanger’ responses, which happily for them, resulted in increased business and/or great advertising for their humorous and clever responses.
We received a few requests for some of the more humorous responses we came across. So here are the top 5 entries:
1. Bad BnB review
One of my favourites and a great response to a bad review for a BnB who commented that “the only good thing about the establishment was the ‘friendly lady’ received this response from the owner:
‘I AM HAPPY THAT YOU FOUND MY WIFE FRIENDLY…I RARELY SEE THAT SIDE OF HER! MAYBE THAT IS WHY WE EARNED TWO STARS INSTEAD OF ONE!’
2. Skyscanner 47 year layover recommendation
The airline search engine, Skyscanner, had a less favourable online review from one customer who noticed one of the flights recommended to them by the site recommended a 47 year layover in Bangkok.
The social media manager for Skyscanner UK and Ireland responded cheekily:
“Here are a few suggestions:
-You missed Songkran (their New years celebration) but you’ve got another 46 yrs to enjoy it.
-How do you feel about heights? The Moon Bar is pretty good and open until 1am so you could spend a good chunk of time there.
-A cruise on the Chao Phraya river could keep you busy for a while.
-If you get peckish there’s a floating market. Not only good for grub but you could make a few mates whist you’re there. Win/win.
-Become a Tai Chi expert in Lumpini Park
(ps thanks for letting me know about this-I’ll get some folk to look into it!)”
3. Tesco, the UK Supermarket, on mouldy garlic
A customer posted a public social media query on the Tesco Facebook site:
“Hey Tesco, my still-in-date-by-a-week garlic is mouldy. How am I supposed to fight off vampires now (how do I address the issue?)”
Tesco’s brilliant response went viral:
“Dear Mr X: I do hope that by the time you receive this you have not had to encounter any vampires, mouldy garlic is not the suitable tool to use in such a situation.
I have enclosed a 2GBP Moneycard to help you fight off the undead hordes. Please buy some more garlic with this so you can protect the people that you love. I do hope that this situation has not turned you away from purchasing your survival kit against the undead and other unworldly beings from us.”
4. Woolworth’s on mouldy hummus
You may remember the Woolworth’s playful response on Facebook a few years back that went viral and obtained extensive media exposure. It started with this playful complaint by a customer on Woolworth’s Facebook page:
“Dear Woolworths Mosman, in the words of the modern day poet Ice Cube, ‘Today was a good day’, until a familiar craving for SS Foods Hommus from my usual and reliable local Woolworths was bestowed upon me.
I hopped in my car and made my way to ‘Woolies’, salivating at the thought of wrapping my mouth around a long carrot oozing with your culinary delight that is known as your delicious hummus.
I took that bad boy home ready to indulge my inner tastebuds and invite every sensation to my mouth party.
I was shocked, disappointed and disgusted at the sight of a clump of mould atop the hummus. I am at a loss as to what I am supposed to do. Do I eat around it? Do I accept this as satisfactory?
Do I walk into Woolworths now, with the expectation that there is a very high chance that if I buy dip it will be “tough titties” for me if I run into the dip mould pandemic in my once secure home? Please, advise me on what is to be done in such dire circumstances.”
Woolworth’s response was classic:
“Firstly, we love the great poet Ice Cube. But let’s talk about hummus.
We totally understand that this is not okay and we will follow up with the store to make sure any other products like this get Straight Outta Mosman.
The Boyz in the Hood will look into this for you. Check Yo Self and get over to the service desk for a refund and replacement — You Know How We Do It.
Peace out Hommus.”
Within 23 hours, the post gained over 32,000 likes and a string of praise from social media users.
5. Optus on their multilingual advertisements
The final entry in our top 5 responses is by Optus, where ‘Dan’ an Optus customer service representative, gained hundreds of fans, with his firm but fair approach. The Melbourne employee took to Facebook and schooled customers for complaining about the non-English ads.
“Thanks for the feedback Virgil. Australia is a nation full of languages, some 200 plus of them are native to Australia, but English is not one of those native languages…
I live in Melbourne, a city renowned for its multicultural community, with world famous precincts to celebrate other cultures. We have Lygon St, where you can still hear Italian spoken in a lot of the restaurants, Lonsdale St and suburbs like Oakleigh, where you can practice your Greek. A rich society is a diverse one, and a warm welcome to someone in their own language makes them feel like a part of that community. We’ll be advertising on more flyers, in more languages, that we have staff who can welcome you in your own language — Dan”
There are ways to win customers, and even gain business by using some creativity and humour in your approach and responses to customer reviews. Responding to your business reviews which may be less than favourable can be aided by good humour and clever playfulness which can sometimes go a long way to turn bad into good-for-business!
So…..tell us your favourite review response-or come with your own version of a rap response, we would love to hear it!