Food blog "chop suey”

Another day in the blog-o-sphere and a food blog was asked by the cafe to remove the “negative” post about their cafe.

Kaelyn Ong was asked to take down her blog post of the cafe or else legal actions will follow.

The story took on the Streisand Effect with the local newspapers reporting about it and bloggers posting their views about the legal threat.

After this story, I believed some companies out there are worried about dealing with bloggers. Actually, this case should be an example on how you don’t deal with a negative review. But how should you deal with a negative review?

Here are some tips.

Address the issue, not the blogger

When you threaten the blogger to pull down the post with legal action, you are reacting to the blogger and not the issue at hand.

In this case here, the blogger commented about the cakes and food at the cafe. Was there something that the cafe could have improved on? Was the Nikita cake really too dry for that day’s serving?

The cafe has the right to respond but remember to address the issue, not the blogger.

Count to 10 before responding

Sounds like an anger management tip, but I wouldn’t be surprise if the cafe owner would be angry over the review. But the best thing to do is to count to 10 before responding.

Better, go sleep over the problem and look to address it the next day.

Print media like blogger stories, especially about companies suing them

If your choice of moving forward is to take legal action against the blogger, make sure you prepare yourself the blogger is going to blog about you suing the blogger and the press will soon get wind of it and choose to write a story about it.

Readership at traditional media maybe dying, but they still have the numbers to have an effect. The issue will no longer just be bounded within the traditional media as there will be bloggers who will cut and paste the article and put it up online and post a comment in favour of the affect blogger.

Practise good customer service in dealing bloggers

Not all your customers are bloggers, but almost all bloggers can be your customers. Hence it is important for you as a company to practise the same good customer service you would with your real customers.

I still remember that when I ordered fish and chips at Geek Terminal then, my fish was served uncooked and they replace it immediately and offered a free meal. That’s good customer service.

What if Geek Terminal didn’t offer the replacement? Would I sue them, of course not. I would have paid up and not return anymore.

Threatening legal action against the blogger is bad customer service but engaging them is good customer service.

The cafe here in question should have email the blogger back to the cafe for a free tasting session to explain for the bad servings that day. Maybe take this opportunity to get more feedback from the blogger.

I won’t be surprised if the blogger would blog positively about the cafe’s good customer service in dealing with bloggers.

Bloggers are actually nice people

Bloggers are not are scary as they seem. In inviting bloggers to event, I find bloggers to be very friendly and nice.

If they cannot attend an event, they would reply nicely. I have also work with bloggers where they work closely with the brand rather than against the brand.

Managing bloggers’ expectations is also important. Be open and transparent with the blogger. If you don’t know the answer and need to get back to the blogger, say you don’t know. One should also be upfront of the details too rather than try to hide to save one from embarrassment.

I wondered what would have been the respond if the cafe chose to engage the blogger instead of threatening with legal action?


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