Of course I don’t mean actually cooking them but then again those evil creatures don’t actually exist either. Restaurants – and every other business – have to deal with negative reviews in social and other media. Sometimes they’re warranted and sometimes they drift over into troll-dom. Today’s screed is about how one restaurant owner handled a troll and hopefully we can all learn a little something from his method.
After a customer posted a review on UrbanSpoon — which has since been deleted — requesting that the servers show more skin, owner Daniel McCawley took matters into his own hands.
“It was brutish. I was upset. I’m a father of a 12-year-old girl and I’ve got five sisters,” McCawley said. “The way that women are treated is pretty personal as far as I’m concerned.”
He did show more skin by offering a potato skin special. 100% of the proceeds will go directly to the West Virginia Foundation for Rape Information Services. Clever, non-confrontational, and it generated a ton of positive buzz for his business. That’s the right way to handle this sort of thing. Suing the trolls (if you can find out their real identities), forcing review sites to delete the negative reviews, or responding in kind with defamatory comments about the poster do nothing but make you appear small. My lawyer friends would tell you that it also opens you up to a series of legal issues when you start making allegations.
We forget sometime that if we serve 10,000 people and make 99.99% of them happy, there is still one unhappy customer. In fact, some people who post these reviews had a great experience but, like the idiot above, find something about which to complain. You can ignore it (which is probably what I would have done in this case) or use it to do something smart to cook the troll (which is where the owner proves he’s smarter than me!) or choose to jump down into the mud with them. Your call.