Microsoft was not pleased with the review. And this time, the displeasure was played out publicly and immediately on Twitter.
Microsoft's head of communications, Frank X. Shaw, tweeted: “@nytimes @Pogue Dear David Pogue, what a classic Pogue piece. Funny, inaccurate, opinionated in the skewed way only you can bring.” That tweet, predictably, set off a small explosion of retweets and comments.
Shaw told Business Insider, “We fundamentally disagree with David.” That’s fine, but should Shaw have tweeted in response to a bad review in the first place?
Some PR pros say you should always respond, in a timely manner, in your chosen forum, but that it’s best to have a “champion” do that for your company. That’s what Stuart Zakim, president, Bridge Strategic Communications, told Inc. in June of this year.
What with all the places online that pros like Pogue and average Joe's can write reviews of your product or services, it may be a good idea to respond these days. But does it ever advance your communications mission to get into a public dispute that attacks journalists? Here are some accepted best practices.
- Keep up with all comments about your product or service. Monitor reviews so that when negativity appears, you know about it. You can’t react if you don’t know about it.
- Respond in your own forum. Let people know why you think a review was incorrect. But don’t take it to Twitter. Take a few hours and craft a considered response, rather than blasting out 140 characters of what you really think.
- Call for backup. In your response, link to positive reviews. Or make it easy for your favorite customers/journalists to offer comments. Give them a quick call, asking them to chime in with their positive thoughts to offset the negativity.
Follow Brian W. Kelly: @bwpkelly