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Damage Control: Responding to Negative Reviews and Public Backlash

How should brands respond to negative reviews and manage their reputation? Tommie, Tie and Kai cover tips for crisis management and lay out the details on how savvy brands use customer advocates, SEO and affiliate marketing to shape their reputation. They also discuss the importance of having a process, empowering fans, and using charm and accountability to turn negativity around. Tune in to hear valuable secrets that will help you spin feedback into gold and navigate this era of social media with finesse.
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Key Episode Highlights

In this episode, you'll learn:

  • When you should delete negative comments versus addressing them
  • How great customer service can turn critics into fans
  • How the savviest brands are using SEO and affiliate marketing together


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[00:00:00] Kai: The key, I think the, the first key anyway, in just kind of managing the response is just being timely. You can't let days upon days, upon days, upon days go by without You know, out some sort of response that is authentic and sincere and without taking some sort of action, whether that's a press release, if that's, you know, the situation warrants that or whether it's something deeper and more in terms of like, you know uniting communities or rallying communities together or what have you, you've got to move fast, I was on Facebook the other day and I was actually looking for a particular business that I planned on doing business with when. I want to check, I want, you know how we do, we click on the reviews and I click on the reviews and the first thing I see is like some cuss words across the screen.

[00:01:52] Tieron: So I'm like, yo, what's going on with this? So apparently a lady had went to this business, had issues with the front desk, then she had issues with the service. So, of course, just like any, it's like any customer, she took it to Facebook and wrote down what happened to her. And the first response instead of that, instead of the business, or instead of this company having a protocol of how to deal with like negative reviews and damage control and everything else, they just from an emotional standpoint, just went in on this particular customer and started cussing the customer out.

And then you can see other employees jumping into jumping into the conversation, who I guess was had also had involvement with this particular customer. And now they're cussing the customer out 

[00:02:36] Tommie: because they found mouth to ride because 

[00:02:40] Tieron: if they, if the owner is in there, cussing, cussing the customer out, then now they feel empowered around too, right?

And then now you got, but now you have other people that have gone to this establishment and have, and have experienced the same thing that the customer has experienced. So now they're on there going back and forth with the founder and with the person that worked there saying, well, no, she's not alone because I dealt with 

[00:03:02] Tommie: the 

[00:03:02] Tieron: same thing a couple of weeks ago, but I was just trying to support y'all.

So there's definitely a way there's definitely a proper protocol and procedure of how you should deal with negative reviews. And I think this is a classic example of what not to do when it comes down to dealing with negative reviews and then even negative feedback. What do you guys thought?

[00:03:25] Tommie: Please don't tell me it's us. Was it one of us? Was it one of us? No, no, it definitely wasn't one of y'all. Oh, okay. 

[00:03:36] Tieron: I think that It definitely wasn't one of us. I get what you're saying now. It was not one of us. 

[00:03:43] Tommie: I think that 

[00:03:45] Kai: it's really unfortunate when this kind of stuff happens, and I don't really understand why it happens with such regularity, because like, at the end of the day I don't know, maybe it's just a lack of awareness of how it's actually going to look, right?

Like... I don't know that founders are perhaps truly thinking through what that's going to look like to somebody who doesn't know anybody who's in the melee. Exactly. And all they wanted was to get their hair done. They were just minding their business on the interwebs and all of a sudden they wind up in this super low vibration situation.

So, yeah, I think that there's, there's definitely, there's definitely some lessons to be learned, I think, in something like this. You know, I've, I haven't seen, well, I can't say that. I was going to say, I haven't seen a lot of this on brick and mortar side. I have seen quite a bit of this in in e commerce unfortunately 

[00:04:42] Tieron: on ads in the comments, 

[00:04:45] Kai: ads on the comments, I mean, Google reviews, responses to Google reviews, responses on the website, which is, 

[00:04:56] Tieron: which is crazy because you can actually control it.

[00:04:59] Kai: It's like a whole nother level of weird Amazon. Yeah, for sure. It's just not, there's a, and it's, you know, there's more than one way to, to skin a cat as it were, right. But I think there are terrible ways to go about that. And I feel like at the end of the day you know, I get when founders have a lot on my plate there's a lot going on, perhaps they're under quite a bit of stress and duress and what have you.

And they just, you know, one day they just lose it. I 

[00:05:33] Tieron: think texting your team and telling them to cut somebody out on Facebook is probably the wrong, 

[00:05:39] Tommie: even your team having the idea to think that they can just do it is. I think it's 

[00:05:45] Kai: indicative of a lack of systems and a lack of process. Because if you have a process in place, this sort of stuff doesn't happen unless it's part of the process.

Unless part of your SLP needs is respond and, and cuss this woman out, then, you know, it's, it just shouldn't be happening. Right. I think it's largely, it's just, it's because people don't have actual processes in place and they don't have a thing to go to, to say, okay, this is what the protocol needs to look like in the event of X, Y, and Z.

Mm hmm. And I think that's true, honestly, across, like, not even just with respect to negative reviews, but even, like, if we get into the realm of, like, crisis management and, like, a larger scale as well, I mean, even larger companies you know, fumble a ball on this too. So, you know, it's easy to, to muck it up.

But I think when you have. Yeah. When you keep certain points and like key points in mind, when we're talking about reputation management and that sort of thing it's going to go a lot better for you. And oftentimes you can even turn into a positive if you do it, right? 

[00:06:57] Tommie: I think 

[00:06:58] Tieron: there's a lot of great, there's a lot of great examples.

Like, when you think about the honey pot, right? Like the honey pot knocked it out of the park. And then even most recently there's been like on tick tock EYL has been hit with a lot of. Negative reviews or negative feedback. And then there was the dove situation that happened where they got hit with a ton of negative feedback and then shape moisture.

I'm going to add that they ran that they got hit with a lot of negative feedback. 

[00:07:25] Kai: Yeah. I mean, I think it happens to a lot of different brands. I don't know if people actually know what you're referring to when you, when you get into some of these specifics. But I think it definitely happens to a lot, a number of brands.

I know the, the honeypot situation, it wasn't even you know, at least the situation that I'm thinking about where they got tons of backlash from some rather unsavory characters. Over a target spot that they were in and people like flooded, you know, went to the took to the reviews or whatever online and flooded them with negative reviews.

And they were able to turn that around and, I mean, they, they came out of that even better than they had even better than they were previously, right? Like, absolutely. Absolutely. They, they really crushed it after that. There's a lot of communities that rallied around. Around them and just flooded their, you know, every review site with super positive reviews and tons of support.

And obviously that translated into you know, into sales as well. 

[00:08:29] Tommie: I mean, to their credit, they got good products too, cause I got honey pot in my house right now. Yeah, I know. And my wife doubled down on honey pot. After that. It's been pretty much a staple in our house ever since, but they 

[00:08:45] Kai: won, won. Yeah, no, for sure.

I mean, they, it was almost a movement that was in support of, of the brand and what they were doing and a founder in particular. So there, there's definitely and the, the response was swift. I think that was the key there is. You know, they didn't just kind of sit on their laurels after a bunch of people started flooding.

Their review pages with negative comments, like they, they rallied the troops. Rallied the troops, and like it was in no time. They back communities on communities, on communities in support of them sharing the story, telling people on social media what's going on and how honeypots being, you know, done dirty.

So, you know, but timeliness was everything, and I think I think that's something that brands aren't always cognizant of or paying enough attention to. You know, in Honeypot's case, like, it wasn't even something that they did, right? They, you know, they were just, you know, minding their business being great.

But oftentimes, brands that perhaps, you know, maybe they put out a product line or did a product launch that wasn't you know, the highest in quality. Or, you know, whatever it is, right? Maybe throw an event together that just was kind of that fell flat and where people really weren't satisfied with it, whatever it is.

The key, I think the, the first key anyway, in just kind of managing the response is just being timely. You can't let days upon days, upon days, upon days go by without You know, out some sort of response that is authentic and sincere and without taking some sort of action, whether that's a press release, if that's, you know, the situation warrants that or whether it's something deeper and more in terms of like, you know uniting communities or rallying communities together or what have you, you've got to move fast, you have to move fast.

In the era of social media, like you just can't afford to sit around and, and wait it out or you, and you certainly can't afford to sit around and, and kind of wring your hands and fret and try to plan out what, what you're going to do for one week, two weeks, three weeks on end while this thing is happening.

[00:10:59] Tommie: It's the flip side, you know, it's, well, I'm gonna say the flip side, but it's like An opportunity to commute, you know, the whole community management and like the importance of that because being able to the time to respond and having a community already because you've already been managing that gives you that agility to act in that way.

I know there are ease he talks a lot about activating his social army. When it comes to them making viral video, you know, basically like a lot of these viral videos that they would do. So it kind of give me that same idea, right? It's like, they do a lot of work of building and managing community such that when it's time to activate.

They able to do so and and and that the swiftness in which that they can activate that, you know, it's pretty fast, right? So I would imagine, you know, that's akin to, you know, this situation. So maybe it's just a good opportunity for one of you guys and maybe just, you know, address that from a. Community management standpoint and kind of drive home because we talk about that word a lot.

I know, you know, you use that language a lot. I think this is another opportunity to communicate why that is so important. I agree. 

[00:12:18] Kai: Yeah. So, community management is it's, it kind of goes, there's like two prongs to this right so. There's the community of people that already know, like, and trust you. You know, a lot of brands, I mean, I'm sure the Honeypot is no exception.

They have built communities that will rally around them in times of, need or anything. And when they you know, blow the horn, so to speak, like, you know, they're, they're coming, they're there. And you see this with the strongest brands, strongest brands that have, especially brands have grown really, really quickly tend to have had really strong communities around them.

And so you've got the community of people who already know, I can trust you, but you also have the community, the larger community of people who don't really know you like that, but have interacted with the brand or engaged with the brand in some way, whether it's positive or negative. And so community management really speaks to both of those communities.

It's really about how a brand actually engages with those communities wherever they are. So whether that's on organ and social, whether that's in like your Facebook group, for example, or whether that's in comments on advertising When we're talking about reputation management by and large, I mean, the, the environment where that happens can be almost anywhere, digitally speaking, or.

Non digitally. But usually when I'm talking about it, it's through the lens of paid social. And so when I dive into our community management we're really talking about how well do you manage the larger community of people who don't really know you very well who are checking out your ad for the first time, perhaps top of funnel acquisition traffic.

And they have questions, or those who do know you, who have perhaps purchased from you and just weren't fans of you, or people who have purchased from you and loved the product, right? Anybody really who is responding to comments and advertising, the community management game has to be super tight. And especially, especially when we're talking about responding to negative comments and negative reviews.

I think oftentimes brands are much quicker to respond to reviews you know, perhaps in, on other platforms, you know, if it's on their own direct consumer site that sort of thing, but not as quick for some reason to respond to negative comments and reviews on apps. Which is kind of blows my mind a little bit because that's literally like, you know, you can get a snowball of negative comments on advertising and it can completely like stifle any progress that you've made when it comes to conversion rates on ads.

For that particular, you know, set of campaigns you can totally tank your click through rate, all of that, because people are gonna go, like, the, the first thing they see is the creative, that's what stops the scroll generally, and check out the headline, and the headline compels them to read maybe, like, the first line of copy, which compels them to read the second, then third, et cetera, et cetera but at some point in that, they're gonna go to the comments, and they're gonna see, I wanna see what people are saying about this, and sometimes that might be right after they've seen the creative if they're intrigued about what, how people are responding and creative, right?

Other times it's going to be after they've, you know, gone through the whole shebang and, or somewhere within the copy, right? So, but at the end of the day, it's so, so critical, absolutely critical to be again, it comes down to timeliness, but it also comes down to having like a plan in place to, to take those negative comments.

Take even objections. No, those are pretty, usually pretty relatively neutral, even though I think people on Facebook are probably a lot bolder, that's the word I'm looking for when it comes to their objections and they're not afraid to be snarky, yeah, definitely. They can definitely be a little bit rude.

But you know, having a plan in place to actually address that address those types of comments. Already having something in advance to say when somebody says something like X, this is how we're going to respond. We'll respond with Y. I don't know that there are a lot of brands. That are really thinking that through and the ones that are and have they are able, and it's, they obviously have a lot of other things at play that help them achieve this stability, but they are able to maintain much more stable advertising campaigns in terms of performance for sure.

So yeah, that's pretty 

[00:16:54] Tommie: cool. Well, on YouTube ad side is interesting. You saying that, right? Cause the flip side on YouTube is it's not as easy to hit. The comments on your ads, but what they do is they go searching on YouTube and on Google. And that is why when you really are starting to try to scale, I've seen campaigns just get completely derailed because they start scaling the ads.

You're driving more of the behavior that they're going to Google and they're not liking what they seeing and it's killing your ads. You know what I mean? So Ty, I know, you know, we talk about this whole SEO, that ain't really my world, but I understand the importance of. You know, creating this behavior where people are going to search you and being able to somewhat control or I don't know if I'm using the right language, right.

But like, in essence, I mean, you kind of control it and what they're going to see when they get there maybe you can speak to, you know, from an SEO perspective, but I know for me, like, that's, that's something that I harp on a lot because it's not like Facebook where they're going to go to the comments because it's not as easy to hit the comments from a YouTube ad, but they do is they go search YouTube or they go search Google.

That's the next part of the behavior versus on Facebook. They go into the comments. They're going to go straight to that search and what pops up is going to really dictate a lot in terms of whether they convert or not. So, you know, what are your thoughts on the SEO side of controlling what people see when they, when they search you?

No, we ran 

[00:18:33] Tieron: ads on Facebook. I hadn't ranked for the actual company's brand name yet. So I didn't think it was important at the time because I was just like, okay, well, you know, most people is just going to see the ads. They're going to click through the ads. And then from there, they're going to buy.

I didn't expect people were going to be going to Google and then searching for the brand name or searching for the product 

[00:18:53] Tommie: name. And you mean YouTube ads or you mean 

[00:18:55] Tieron: Facebook ads, Facebook ads. Okay. Yeah. 

[00:18:57] Kai: So no, they'll go to Google too. Like typically it's like the first thing they'll do is hit the comments and depending on how much the price point or how high the price point is, they'll do all sorts of, 

[00:19:06] Tommie: All their behavior.


[00:19:09] Tieron: Yeah. So that, so that same behavior that's happening on Google is also happening on Facebook. Yeah. Yeah. And Amazon as well. So the same. Yeah. Amazon. I mean, I don't know. People are going to Google to search for a product on Amazon. Maybe they are, but they're definitely 

[00:19:24] Tommie: going. No, I'm just saying, if they saw your ad and you are an Amazon type product, right?

They'll go to Google. They'll go to Amazon and search you. Right. Absolutely. So 

[00:19:35] Tieron: what I saw was once we turned around and begin ranking for the actual product name and ranking for the actual name of the brand name, The conversion rate went up as well. And we was able to actually track the sales for each and every one of those ads that we had ranked on the first page of Google.

So we saw the, we saw people clicking through to these ads. So we was able to equate back about 230, 000. In sales that came from all of these random articles that when you, when you type the brand name into Google, these random articles is popping up or press releases was popping up. All of this stuff was popping up on page one.

People were clicking through, they were coming to the, they were coming to the, the Shopify store and they were buying. So it's key and it's critical to have that up, especially like you said, as you're going to scale more and more people are going to be, more people are going to be searching Google and more people are going to be buying your product through that direction.

Yeah, so from and it's also a great way and I think we mentioned this earlier It's also a great way to be preemptive What's your reputation management as well. So if, so one person is saying something negative and then all of a sudden somebody goes to Google and they type in like even your brand name, people are thinking that your brand or your product may be a scam, then it would behoove you to actually put that in the, the name of the actual article.

Right. So is, is brand X scam, right. Or, you know, brand X is a scam or whatever, whatever people are typing in. You wanna rank for that too? Rank for that? Yeah. Think, yeah, you wanna rank for that and then tell a, and then tell why it's not a scam. Or the article could be, you know, I thought this was a scam, but then all of a sudden I started seeing all of these reviews and I started getting this, and then I order, and then this is what my, this is what my, my experience was when I actually ordered this product.


[00:21:18] Kai: Generally speaking. So when people. People typically are only putting in, like, is X, Y, Z scan for for like. Info products, products, products centric, for obvious reasons. But, but what people will put in for physical products are things like, does XYZ work work? Right. So like beauty, beauty, anything beauty oriented that'll, that'll typically that'll typically come up.

[00:21:50] Tieron: Brand names used. Sorry, your brand name plus reviews or your product name plus 

[00:21:56] Kai: reviews. Yeah, that as well. So so yeah, it, it will be super beneficial to like have, you know, articles and whatnot, rank especially if you can, I mean, the, the savviest brands are having other kind of affiliate sites create these articles.

So that it looks like, okay, this is coming from a review site, kind of a deal instead of it being like, oh, this is coming from the blog post of the company that I'm, I'm evaluating, right. That has less, that has less weight. So, yeah, 

[00:22:25] Tommie: keep that in mind. Affiliate can be huge for you. I know when we was doing Organifi, like that was a big thing where they had all of these affiliates.

And I mean, it was just never ending because. It didn't matter what you was searching bad or good. You was going to end up in a, in an affiliate article. It's going to say something amazing. That's going to put you back in the funnel. 

[00:22:49] Kai: The brands that are, are, you know, looking to scale, especially brands, I think looking to scale.

To like multiple eight you know, high eight figures, even approaching nine they are using affiliates in some way, shape, or form. But that's, that's another episode for another day. Yeah. I think it's, it's definitely definitely important. 

[00:23:10] Tommie: Yeah. I mean, we were just dominating, just dominating Google, Google rankings.

I mean, It was crushing it and then they did really well on the Amazon side to have to give them have to give them that and then do with it, but they were they were doing really well on the Amazon side of things as well. When people go to Amazon, I mean, it was just, I want to sit here and multiple listings what have you to because they had different, they would have like product and then like multiple versions, you know what I mean?

Like a three pack. So they had a win. Three packs, six pack, and those would be different listings and things like that is pretty dope. know how I was able to kind of mitigate a lot of this stuff. So, but yeah, affiliates was, like I said, I don't even, I don't think that was the intent, but it worked in our favor because all of that traffic that would do that behavior, they was just ending up back in the funnel.

And, we will be able to track that on a, you know, view through conversion type of a tracking, if you will. Right. It wouldn't count as a direct. But we can see the impact of the ads are having when it's creating this behavior because they're going to end up in the funnel and we got all everything tracking is everywhere.

We can see that. Yeah, they didn't take a direct path, but this ad contributed as a touch point to this other behavior that then ended up, you know, they ended up converting and because they had affiliates, they was just crushing Google search. I mean, it was just it was pretty amazing. So. Can work in your favor in that regard.

Sure. I know you had mentioned to You know, this kind of, you know, I know a lot of people like what they reviews and stuff don't do enough automation around creating this type of, you know, environment in terms of using, you know, back in flows to really get a good number of positive, you know, reviews, because sometimes you could get.

You know, if you just randomly letting people review, like sometimes you might not get as many of the good ones as you could, if you had some more protocols in place, maybe you could speak to that a little bit more, just in terms of like email flows and whatnot on the back end to kind of really help with your review, your overall reviews and whatnot.

[00:25:38] Kai: So. Ultimately, this is what I recommend. Remember, I mean, honestly, any e commerce brand especially brands that are selling consumables, but even if you're not I think one area that's often overlooked when we're talking about mitigating negative reviews or mitigating, you know, any public facing backlash, when it comes to satisfaction or dissatisfaction with products.

When we get into email flows and establishing, like, review requests, right? I'm sure people who are listening are, are already well aware of the need to have review requests as part of your post conversion flows. And by and large, I'm imagining, well, I'll just put it out there so as kind of an aside.

Usually with review requests, you're going to want to have more review requests in your, your post conversion flow for returning customers than you will for your post conversion flow for new customers. And it was different. But I think what's a really handy approach to take when it comes to review requests is actually setting up.

It's essentially kind of an automation where you're setting up a situation where you've got the reviewers who are, you know, posting, perhaps are giving the four and five star reviews, those get posted automatically through like those get fed through the site automatically. And then those who have posted, you know, or who are trying to post a three, two and one star reviews, those reviews actually then get funneled to customer service.

Our service to handle and the, the name of the game is for that relationship to get to be salvaged. Right. So customer service should be doing what they can to address the actual concern to compensate in some way, if it's appropriate, all of that good stuff. So that you can with the intention of.

Hopefully retaining that particular customer, or at least giving them an incentive to give you another shot versus allowing the 3, 2 and 1 stars to just funnel through to the site. I think a lot of brands. Some, well, I don't want to say a lot, but there are some brands who will hide those three, two, and one stars, but they don't do anything.

[00:28:03] Tommie: I don't say that a lot of them will have them, 

[00:28:06] Kai: but they, they don't actually do anything about the negative experience. And that's just, that's, that's just as problematic. It's the same thing where it's the same situation where e com brands are hiding negative comments on advertising. That's an actual opportunity for you to do something about that so that you can retain that.

Cause you've already paid for them. You've already, you paid for the acquisition already. So you might as well do what you can to retain that person as a customer going forward. And there are plenty of opportunities that you can actually do that. So when it, when it comes to making sure that those three, two and one stars are being guided along to customer service to be addressed swiftly and thoroughly, that's the name of the game.

That way you don't have to go out into the ether to find another customer to replace that one that you just lost. Now is it to say that they'll, all of them will, will buy again? Probably not. But you certainly can try to mitigate the, the fallout for sure using, you know, really strong customer service practices and just making sure that they fully understand that you guys know you messed up, that you sincerely care about their business and that you are, you know, you really want to thank them first and foremost for their feedback, and then also, Incentivize and and, you know, give them a reason to, to give you another 

[00:29:31] Tieron: go.

Now those have become some of your best customers as well. 

[00:29:34] Kai: Because there's so few brands that actually do that sort of thing, fresh air. And so what's happening is you have a you've got this kind of renewed shot at building and maintaining this relationship because you're doing. something that's unexpected.

It kind of falls into the surprise and delight category, to be honest. If you do it really well you know, you can definitely you can definitely find yourself with some fans on the other side of that. 

[00:30:04] Tieron: Exactly. And people that are really fighting for your brand too, because they've already been through whatever the negative situation is that somebody else may post and they can be like, Hey, I got it wrong.

You probably did the same thing that I did do this. And then everything should work out. So now they, now they start to advocate for you. Versus just being somebody else that's in the comments, just echoing what the other negative 

[00:30:25] Tommie: reviewer said, which is essentially what we jumped off with right where, you know, you got the comment in the, in the, the founder, you know, cussing the woman out and now her employees in there cussing the people out.

Right. Oh, you reached to the bottom. That's tacky. 

[00:30:44] Kai: It's tacky. It's a bad look. It is. It leaves a bad taste. It does. Now mind you, there's a way to respond to negative comments in a way that's like entertaining. Of course. And maybe a touch snarky, but like it, there's a, there's a line, right? But you can't just be out here just aggressively.

Like attacking customers, let's just, no, let's go, we don't do that. So yeah, there's, I think there's the beautiful part about advertising and social and just like, just having brands like, you know, growing and scaling brands as well as like, you get to, you get to choose what your brand looks like.

You get to choose what brand voice is. You, you get to decide how you engage with people and you can, there's so many ways to skin that cat to get what it is that you ultimately want, which is a happy customer slash lots of new happy customers because they've watched how you move digitally in the world, as it were, and they're impressed, delighted, entertained you know, what have you.

They're happy with what they see. So yeah, there's, there's lots of ways to do that. I think, I mean, we've all seen brands who take a snarkier approach, to, to community management or just to, you know responding to, you know, negative comments and backlash. I know Wendy's is really, Wendy's is really good at that, but they weren't the first ones.

I think they were the ones that like brought it to light because people really expect to see it from a large company. But there were plenty of companies that were doing it before them. Know, the whole kind of like roasting clapbacks, you and they, I mean, when he does it with anybody, like anybody can get it, it's not even just negative or negative comments.

But but yeah, I think that it's definitely there's a level of authenticity that exists and figure out where that fine line is. And and traverse that really, really elegantly. 

[00:32:56] Tommie: You know, it made me think about the Popeye's and Chick fil A thing where he had the whole back and forth. And it was just so hilarious, man.

And then I was talking about this. Before this company, fuck Jerry, that's kind of how they became to me. That was kind of like how they established, like, no way back. There's like I say, at least a decade ago where they, they, they kind of like built their brand off of that. Cause at this time, I don't think a lot of people really understood the, the, the severity of your ads talking back to you or your, you know, and when I say ads, it ain't just running ads, but it's also like organic.

Because you're essentially advertising on social, whether you're posting organic content, you're running ads, whatever type of content, media, whatever you're pushing that get your eyeballs on your brand essentially is advertising, right? And you got the social media that's talking back. And I don't think a lot of companies really understood that at this time.

And these guys were, you know, kind of like early on of saying like, Oh, we know, like. You know, you got this, it's a two way conversation going on in your social media marketing. And there's a way to kind of go about that. And they kind of started that kind of snarky. I mean, they did a lot of other campaigns, but that's kind of what I knew them from.

And then, you know, it's fast forward and you see the Wendy's of the world and these other brands like really, really doing really well with that. But it was kind of like this. Moment in time almost where people, you know, brands was starting to understand how important it is to, you know, that your ads or your marketing is talking back to you, we don't just go on TV on the radio or print or whatever and push this message out.

Now, when you get on social, you can do all of that, but they got something to say is everybody got a bull horn. Now everybody think they fucking, you know whatever they take is or whatever the opinion is matters. And so they'll put it in there because they be on some keyboard warrior stuff, right? And like how, how you address that and deal with that, you know, it's important.

Yeah, smart way to do it. And I think it's a tacky ass way to do it, which we just talked about a professional way to do it. But I like the snarky if it's part of your brand voice and that's kind of what your brand is. You know what I mean? I don't think everybody should employ that, but 

[00:35:29] Kai: it makes sense. It comes down to your brand is

that you're selling. I mean, all of that you have to take into consideration. I wouldn't expect. To see, you know, like high elite esteemed financial advisors, like talking shit in there in the comments of, of like a social media post or anything like that. So you just, you 

[00:35:52] Tommie: want to voice 

[00:35:52] Tieron: a lawyer who kills it on social media.

Oh yeah. There's some out there now. Yeah. No, 

[00:35:57] Kai: there's, there's, well, I think divorce, I think, I think that's a different brand though. That's, that's a more justified, yeah. Like they're already fighting, people are already like heated and it's, it's already a super tense kind of environment when you are having to hire a divorce attorney.

Right. So no, with the divorce, 

[00:36:16] Tieron: what this particular divorce divorce lawyer does is he will comment, Some of these like podcasts or videos talking about reactions. 

[00:36:26] Tommie: Yeah. You do reactions. 

[00:36:28] Tieron: Yeah. But he's in the comments, he's in the comments, he's in the comments saying, you know, like. You know, if you're making these decisions, like this is the fastest way to be in my office.

So like, so that's, so that's how he's responding. So he's not talking about people actually going through a divorce or anything like that is not. Cause obviously, like you said, it's very sensitive, very heated. And he understands that. Plus, you know, he's trying to be professional as well, but he's commenting on some of these, you know, marketing 

[00:36:53] Tommie: strategy.


[00:36:54] Tieron: Some of these dates, you know, some of these relationship or marital, you know, 

[00:36:58] Tommie: marital Dr. Dre wife want 2 million a month. Gotcha. 

[00:37:02] Tieron: Right. 

[00:37:03] Kai: That type of stuff. We're probably thinking about a different divorce lawyer than that's what I'm thinking. Cause I'm, there's a, there's another divorce lawyer who was like, all of his social media is just like snark.

It's like nothing, but I just, and like, and people will come 

[00:37:20] Tommie: back, like what I say. 

[00:37:21] Kai: Yeah. He's, he's great. So yeah. I mean, I think that ultimately. You'll have to evaluate for your own brand whether or not that's something that works. I know there's a brand that we worked with that they were just constantly bombarded, constantly bombarded me.

We still work with them actually, but they're constantly bombarded with comments. And we actually wound up the reason why I said we worked with is we started off with ads management and they were so impressed with us that they decided to bring us on for full blown fractional CMO services on top of it.

So but what was happening for them is people would just like slam them in the comments because of the nature of the product. And like the price point, they have a number of objections, a number of things to that they needed to surmount and hurdle. And they were initially just kind of letting those comments just sit there.

And so Facebook in particular. When people see one person's objection they're going to pile on. And so one becomes and 10 becomes 50 and 50 becomes 350. And the next thing, you know, like none of your campaigns are working. Right. So that's, that's the issue. Part of the issue that we're having, they, they didn't realize this was an issue though.

So they came to us and we're like, yeah, I realize it's trash. And we really need to be, you know, it's here. We need to be here. And we went through that analysis and what have 

[00:38:45] Tommie: you. Yeah, they got 500 

[00:38:49] Kai: comments going on. And so what was happening was we, we took on our community management, which we don't do for all brands.

But we, we do for brands that we consider to be in a bit of a crisis. So, cause it's like, it's going to affect, like, it will affect paid social, it will affect paid traffic. So you kind of have to and so we took on their community management and we built out a brand voice for them. Based off of the nature of the product, based off of what we knew of their, you know, the psychology of their various avatars in their audience.

And we put something together that was, you know, it was borderline snarky and it, it really went well because that was the language that these people in a lot of these segments and a lot of these audience segments, that's the language that they understood. And so instead of. You know, I think a lot of brand founders are nervous about kind of the clap back thing.

Like, Oh, is it going to blow back? Are we going to get into a fight? Is it going to be a thing? Are they going to be mad? There's a fine line. You have to be really careful about how you craft that copy and how you craft those, those answers. And even like how you build out that system. But when you do it well, I mean, what was happening was one, their click through rates skyrocketed.

They were coming to us with like, Like 0. 6 percent 0. 5 percent click throughs and their click through rates skyrocketed all the way up to like three, three and a half, 4 percent after we employ this. And and then their conversion rates skyrocketed as well. They, I think they were at like a 1. 5 and wound up doubling like in a three, four week period.

And and then obviously the revenue took off and whatnot, everything else kind of took off from there. But what was going on in the comments is like, there were a lot of people who would like, we were getting like a lot of like laughter reactions and a lot of heart reactions, right. Which the brand hadn't really seen before like that.

Because people kept like hitting them in the comments and they were just like going in. And then furthermore, what wound up happening is we actually, that level of community management actually started empowering people who had purchased the product before to actually like come out in support of us as well, right?

So the, the comments that we put through. In ads would then be supported with like yeah, you tell them this is my experience and it was great. Like, they would go in and That's that's what you want to see because that's amazing for engagement. Like let's let let your customers like do the back and forth, right?

Like you, you can just, you know, respond and do it in a way that's that's fun and entertaining. If that's part of the brand voice. And all the, like the fighting or whatever, like, let, let your, let your most loyal customers do that. Cause they will, they'll pop, they see ads too. For this particular strategy, we want to make sure that they saw ads.

Sometimes that's not the best way to do it. Sometimes you do want to have exclusions so that you don't have purchasers in in cold traffic. But for this, like, we were very intentional about needing to needing to have people who had already purchased this product come in and, like, step in, right?

And so. Yeah, they totally rocked it. And so it's, it's possible to do. You just have to make sure that you're careful about the brand words. 

[00:42:07] Tieron: Seems like authenticity. Was like the biggest trigger there that caused people to engage more. And, and it also caused the click through rate to jump up because people actually saw based on the responses from the company, how authentic the company work was.

So the trustworthiness of the company also 

[00:42:25] Tommie: skyrocketed to a C. Well, that's the climate that we in people just, I mean, some folks just act like they don't. Won't down want to do that. I don't really know what it is, but we are in the age of authenticity That's what's winning the day people ain't stupid bro.

Like That's what I be trying to get people to understand like they want to do everything under the sun except be authentic and it's crazy to me because it's like that's the easiest shit to do. Just be who you are. If you deliver a great product and you authentic, your ass finna win. You about to win out 

[00:42:55] Kai: here.

And I think that's the common thread is like the through, you know, various examples that we've spoken to like even Wendy's. Wendy's is a gigantic company, right? But yet they are able to achieve a level of authenticity just by being a normal regular person person. Like, I think that people all too often discount the power of that, like just instead of sounding like A you know, throwing out a bunch of soundbites and whatnot, like a PR 

[00:43:25] Tommie: statement and all of this 

[00:43:26] Kai: bullshit, be a fricking person.

And so that's, that's exactly what we were doing. And that's what I always recommend to brands too. When we were talking about community management, like it's got to feel like it's coming from. A human being and the more that you can put personality into that, then the more likely it's going to feel like it's coming from a human being, because at the end of the day, it is, there is one person who has crafted that message, like, you might as well let 

[00:43:53] Tommie: your point speak to that.

Right? It should be one person. It should be a single point of contact. It should be one voice. 

[00:44:00] Kai: No, absolutely. And, and I think that's part of the issue too, sometimes is that you know, especially I think with more disorganized brands and there are plenty where, you know, everybody it's the organization's almost kind of flat and everybody's wearing a bunch of different hats, having one role.

And then you wind up in a thing where something comes up. You know, the brands dealing with some sort of situation that requires some reputation management and you just have any old employee just saying whatever they feel like saying, like, you can't do that. That's not gonna work. Especially because what, what often happens, not always, but what often happens is you have.

Somebody who's just responding out of their feelings, like, you know, they, they love their job. They are fans of the founder, you know, they don't want anybody talking, you know, talking shit about, about the place they work at and they say whatever they feel like saying and That, that can have very real consequences if you have picked the wrong representative or if you have not.

Right. No. 

[00:45:05] Tommie: Yeah. Are you the representative you should be. Absolutely. That's, 

[00:45:11] Kai: that's pretty common too. Founders, you know, I'm 

[00:45:17] Tommie: guilty of it myself. Yeah, I think it's Try to flame me in the comments on my shit. And I would get emotional. And I would talk shit. And it's easy, it's easy. Like, oh, you got it, oh, yo, I got time today, mo.

You know what I'm saying? 

[00:45:32] Kai: Right, it's easy to get emotional. Like, you can still, like, again, you can still clap back, but just make sure you're doing it in a way that's actually, like, funny, and interesting, and like, and, and gracious. Instead of, you know, just aggressive

[00:45:53] Tieron: and like, it's called social media and there's a, and there's a thing called media training, 

[00:45:58] Tommie: right? Cause you 

[00:46:00] Tieron: out here, cause one thing about these Facebook Facebook reviews and the comments under the reviews, you can't delete that. So with Facebook reviews, you just can't up and delete Facebook reviews, nor can you delete the responses that go back and forth.

Maybe you can delete the response. I'm not sure, but you know, 

[00:46:17] Tommie: but the

[00:46:22] Kai: actual reviews are hard to the thing. I mean, you just don't want to have a paper trail of like just nonsense. Like 

[00:46:28] Tommie: some of these clowns out here, they just had the comments, but you ever see the ad where it's like, it's 14 click to see the comments. 

[00:46:38] Kai: They don't remember, like, legitimately, they, I've seen that over and over.

What happens is, is that people look at those ads and they're like, oh, they have something to hide. And then they keep scrolling. You can't have something that's got like a million views. And like, 

[00:46:56] Tommie: no comment, no comment, like, come on dawg. It's 

[00:46:59] Tieron: highly sus, super sus. anything about it is you should be tweaking the ad or tweaking the product based on all of those negative reviews.

Because I, I saw an ad where it had an image and the image was a diagram of like, you know, a hundred different email campaigns and flows that was already set up and it was like this push button system, you know, can, can produce this. So the natural, so the first question was, okay, so I'm going to give you a dollar and you're going to give me a push button system is going to produce 150 different emails, no response.

And then when you see the ad again, your comment is 

[00:47:37] Tommie: gone. 

[00:47:39] Kai: Like it's just, it's not a good look. People notice and pay attention at all. And I think that I think to be more cognizant of the fact that it's not. You know, brands are pretty quick sometimes just being so in the weeds on the numbers. They're pretty quick sometimes to look at people as numbers when you're looking at people as, you know, just points that are being added to conversion or a click through rate, right.

Or a conversion rate. And you have to realize there are people with working functioning brains behind those clicks. So yeah. know our 

[00:48:15] Tommie: listeners.

Sell great products, right? Because I think a lot of the people who do this kind of stuff, at least for me, and I've had other people co sign this thinking that don't do what I do, like my wife and my, you know in laws and siblings and stuff. When they see stuff like that, they automatically, you know, assume like, oh, okay, this.

That's probably not a good product, right? If they go into their route on these little things like that, I can't imagine what it's like when they're doing the bigger thing, you know, versus like, if you have a good product, you should be willing to go to bat, do these things that we're talking about, because a lot of these people who don't have great products.

They just, they just, they just, they just hide behind whatever they had, you know, trying to kind of get over whatever the case may be probably just ain't gonna 

[00:49:06] Kai: work. I think there's a there's a space where we're in this culture where like dissent means you're hating. This whole concept of hateration, which I think that and what's happening is brands are.

Saying, oh, well, they're just haters and they're just kind of ignoring them versus actually taking the feedback and making your product better now, mind you. So, and I know for facts, a lot of agencies are not doing this. I would probably say maybe 95 98%. Maybe that's even low. Of, of agencies don't do what we do here at KRA, but we, we secret shop.

So before I've even decided whether or not I'm taking on a client, I've already got somebody on my team who has purchased under a pseudonym, who's purchased a product of yours. Absolutely. And the reason for that being is because we know the value of a high quality product and we know the destruction that a low quality product can, can yield as well.

And so if our goal is to get you scaling as quickly and seamlessly and smoothly as humanly possible, we have to make sure that the product's not whack and, and so like the, I say that to say that the quality of the product absolutely matters and the, the willingness that a founder has to to evolve that product is That's also super critical.

So if you are getting a lot of negative reviews on on ads or social or wherever else, right? I think it behooves you as a founder or as an e com decision maker to start kind of re evaluating the product line and see exactly where there are, there's room for improvement. Because ultimately, at the end of the day, the better your product is, the less work you're going to have to do to actually scale.

[00:51:02] Tommie: Yep, yep. Hello. We do that with digital products too, by the way. Buy it, we'll buy it, we'll go through their funnel and buy it. See what they're doing. Just, you know, see how easy it is. Is it hard to get the logins or the emails going to spam? You know, what are they follow up? What are they texting me too much?

Texting me no texts, you know, emails, whatever. Like we'll, we'll go through and see. Let's kind of see what they got going on. Yeah. If it's a terrible buying experience, I already know what time it is when it comes to trying to run the ads. It's going to fucking derail. When I try to scale, it's going to derail it.

So. That's that's a great point. Secret shop. Very, 

[00:51:43] Kai: very important. Yeah, really secret shop. I think I honestly I recommend every agency secret shops. Be honest. Why? I guess it's laziness or maybe just, well, it's 

[00:51:54] Tommie: not right, but I remember a time when I just needed the bread secret shop because I needed to get that I needed that I needed to get them plans.

I needed I needed the money. So I think a lot of times that they just so thirsty to get to the money, or like you say, it could be lazy. I think sometimes it's greed or you got like underlings running the agency and the real person who own it, you know, off on a fucking yacht somewhere sipping drinks with little umbrellas in them, and they don't really care.

They just, it's just greed. It's just greed. So they just want to get them. They just want to get warm bodies in the door because they probably fucking burning through clients. You know what I'm saying? But let me digress. 

[00:52:33] Kai: No, I mean, to me, to me, I get what you're saying. To me, greed and laziness are of the same thought.

I think that people who are super greedy at shortcuts. And I think that the people like they're, they're looking for the most amount of money for the least amount of work. Which is laziness in my mind. I done seen 

[00:52:53] Tommie: some crammy people, a lot of them. Yes. They outworking, but they just grimy and sleazy still.

So, you know, I ain't going to say a hundred percent of that. I agree with you to some degree, but I ain't going to say that it's a hundred percent of the time I'd have seen the shit where you just got a grimy sleazy, but I think 

[00:53:16] Kai: it, are they, are they there? They might be outworking on the marketing and sales, but not outworking on the fulfillment.

[00:53:21] Tommie: If you're out, well, yeah, there you go. Right. Oh yeah, for sure. The product trash. Yes. Yes. Yeah. But that's why they work is so hard. Typically. Right. Cause the product is fresh 

[00:53:34] Kai: after work. Cause they're constantly having to get new customers. That's kind of what it comes down to an e comm is like, if you have, that's why I say, if you have an amazing product, you don't have to work as hard to scale because you have for purchase rates that are optimal.

You have the LTE that you need. You have all of like the kind of the backend, the people are coming back over and over and over again. And so you're not having to spend. As much energy and effort in getting new customers to replace the old customers that have left. And I think that people, people don't always think through, like, how critical the actual quality of product is in when we're talking about scaling.

That's why, like I said, that's why we evaluate that. Okay. Right. Even like the, you know, what I'm thinking about investing in various econ companies and whatnot. Like I'm a secret shop in all your shit have to so is there any, I feel like we've gone through the, the rundown. Is there anything else that we want to dive into anything else that you guys want to leave folks with before we hop off?

[00:54:41] Tieron: First thing that comes to mind for me is kind of what I mentioned earlier, which is. Tommy kind of called me out on this, which is the SEO, right? So just making sure that just take some time today and just type in your brand name or type in your company name and see what comes up on the first page of Google.

And if you're okay with that, you know, then cool. But if you see some things up there, that's probably going to stop people from buying or, or question whether or not they should move forward. product, then you may want to start pumping out more press releases or doing things like that. So that way you can have great quality content on the first page of Google.

So that way you can increase your conversion rate. I'm probably sound 

[00:55:21] Tommie: like a broken record, but you know, what I found in coming on a lot of these scenarios that I've been involved in over the years, we talked about, You know, authenticity and all of that, but like accountability, man, just like people are really forgiving.

I've seen these scenarios where, you know, people are really forgiven if you just own your BS and like you kind of mentioned, right? Just, you know, coming from a real human being coming from a place of. Authentic human being and owning. I fucked up. Here's what I'm gonna do to fix that. You know, give me another shot.

People are really forgiving for that. You know, obviously if you just keep messing up and keep messing up over and over again, ain't nobody gonna mess with that. But people understand like things don't always go the way that it needs to go. Nothing's perfect. And if you just own that, you know, and you, and you do that in an authentic way, I think, you know, you'll be fine.

I mean, it's not that hard to really do. If you really just coming from a place of, you know, authenticity, accountability, you know, just owning it and, and, and people are forgiving. And I've seen that play out, you know, even in my own personal scenario and, and, and many other projects. That I've been involved in.

So that's kind of what I would say to leave people with. Again, maybe I'd probably see that in other episodes, but you know, there it go again. People need to 

[00:56:45] Kai: hear. That's powerful. Yeah, I mean, I think, everybody said what we said at this point, but I think that ultimately the, the main takeaway that I'd like brands to really hold on to is.

Just the importance of establishing a positive relationship, right? And maintaining that positive relationship with customers and prospects, no matter what their opinion of your product or brand is, is critical. And we can do that in a myriad of ways, obviously, some of which we've touched on here.

But it's not an option to just kind of brush off, quote unquote, the haters. Just keep it moving because there are people who are not necessarily haters. They just, there's something about your product that they do not like. And that's an opportunity for you to optimize and get better and be better so that you can actually run with the big boys.

Because you will not get there if you are not willing to take. You know, critical you know, feedback, whether it's constructive or not. Sometimes constructive feedback is just as valuable. So like, you know, picking up your skin and, you know, put your, your big boy briefs on your big girl panties and, and get to work.

[00:58:07] Tieron: All right, y'all please like, and subscribe and leave us some, leave us some comments, leave us some feedback. We'd love to hear it. We'd love to see it. And let us know what else you guys would like to hear what else you would like for us to dive into because we're looking forward to diving into it and we're also looking forward to start to post interviews as well so if you got some people that you know that you'd like to hear us interview or cross examine please let us know in the in the comments and in the reviews when you drop them on social media so we're looking forward to your feedback 

[00:58:37] Kai: all right take care everybody have a good one.


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