On a recent Sri Lankan getaway, my partner fell ill after eating a poolside meal at our hotel.
We were in Sri Lanka for the first time and getting sick at some stage was almost inevitable.
At the time we didn’t worry excessively, these things being par for the course when travelling in developing countries. We called the concierge to cancel our afternoon safari tour and to avoid a cancellation fee, politely told them of our experience.
Before we knew it, the restaurant’s head chef and customer service manager were at our hotel room knocking on the door. Questions on what was consumed and reassurances about their stringent hygiene processes were discussed. They took the cost of both meals off the total of our bill and later delivered a complimentary dinner (even if it was only me eating at the time).
The customer service manager wrapped it all up by asking: “Will you be reviewing the hotel online?”
So it became clear the attentiveness and quality service was borne of fear of a negative online review. However it is nice to see customer service improving as a result of businesses taking online user-generated review sites more seriously.
There remains a great deal of opportunity for businesses to further embrace these sites as a means of information gathering, driving change and simply attracting new customers. Don’t be afraid of criticism, instead be part of the discussion, listen to your customers and get the most out of it for your business.