Before social media took over the world, restaurant reviews were a word of mouth game. And the newspaper food critic held the ‘Most Important Reviewer’ title.
But then Facebook, Twitter and Instagram came along, and now photo sharing your dinner is quite a normal thing to do, at least in some circles.
According to the Nielsen Global Trust In Advertising Survey, 90% of customers trust word of mouth recommendations. But only 70% trust online recommendations.
But 70% is a large number of potential customers that are reading reviews online and using them to consider buying.
This is where Facebook Reviews comes in. Many Facebook customers use the review section, but we found that it doesn’t seem to be as popular with the restaurants themselves.
In fact, it’s totally under utilised! At least by the restaurants we checked out in a recent piece of research for an Irish client!
Read on to find out about Facebook reviews for restaurants and how to use them to your advantage.
What do consumers think?
- Consumers are 50% more likely to share a bad review and only 30% would post about a good experience. But don’t panic yet! Flip the coin and ask yourself this: can this be potentially beneficial for your business?
- A positive review influences 90% of customers on buying decisions. So it’s a good idea to encourage reviews and not stick your head in the sand and hope they go away.
- 99% of Gen X (36-50) are more likely to share reviews online. If this is your target audience, you’ve got to be all over them. Keep the oldies happy.
We recently looked at the social media activity of a number of Irish restaurants. The surprising finding was that not many of them respond or engage with Facebook reviews in any way. This led us to wonder:
Do Irish restaurants know where to find Facebook reviews?
How To Find Facebook Reviews:
- They’re a timeline feature. They allow your followers to comment on their experience with your business and assign you a star rating.
- They are located on the bottom-left hand side of your page with a tab for easy access under your cover pic.
- Your review rating is important. Facebook’s algorithm has a component which uses this to determine whether or not your business is eligible to appear in your fan’s news feed. The higher the rating, the higher the reach!
How to Get Review Notifications From Facebook:
- Login to the admin dashboard, select settings, then look left.
- Under notifications, select ‘get a notification each time there is activity on your Page or an important Page update’.
- Make sure that all notifications are turned on under ‘Edit your notification settings.’
- You can also choose whether you want an email update sent to you every time there’s activity on your page. That might be overkill, but if there’s an open issue that you need to keep an eye on, it could be the way forward!
A key thing to remember about Facebook Reviews: ALWAYS RESPOND!
Whether positive or negative, your response is very important for your reputation.
For good reviews, it’s simple. Thank them for their positive feedback. And be prompt about it.
For bad reviews, well, the response is a bit trickier to negotiate. You have to combat the negativity with compassion and brand integrity.
How to Respond to Bad Facebook Reviews
- Do your homework. Know the issue and have suitable solutions.
- Respond privately and immediately. Contact the complainer privately first and attempt to resolve the issue.
- Respond publicly. Comment on the review post after you’ve resolved the issue with the customer directly. Your response should be empathetic and reflect the tones of your brand.
Empathy, understanding and patience goes a long way to resolving a customer complaint. Meeting these needs is how you effectively handle negative reviews.
Don’t view negative reviews as bad publicity: view them as an opportunity!
If you do it right it could change your star rating.
According to a recent Harris Interactive survey, 33% of customers who received a response from after posting negative feedback then turned around and posted a positive review. A further 34% deleted the original negative review.
A digital customer relationship through social media is important for any business but especially restaurants.
Creating a presence on sites like Facebook and Twitter can help you build an online community for your restaurant brand.
This helps to organize customer feedback and serves as the foundation for successful viral marketing campaigns.
Make reviews work for you.
Don’t let the negativity put you off, embrace the potential for positivity!
If you’d like some help with your Facebook Marketing, get in touch.
I promise we’re really nice to talk to.
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