An Ill-fated Investment in TripAdvisor Fake Reviews



Our team is inspired by the desire we see from our hotel and restaurant clients to evolve their guest experience and elevate their online reputation. As we so often share with them, building an online reputation is a marathon, not a sprint and there is not one single action item that can be “turned on” to change ranking, scores or placement overnight, despite some property's wishes to the contrary...


Buying TripAdvisor Fake Reviews and Fake Feedback on Other Sites Is a Bad Idea

We were recently in a discovery meeting with a prospective client who asked if part of our service included crafting TripAvisor fake reviews and factitious reviews on other platforms on behalf of the hotel. Their hope was that with these TripAdvisor fake reviews, reflecting only high scores of course, the system could be beat and they could quickly move the needle as it relates to their online reputation.


In actuality, factious reviews can be a hotel’s worst nightmare and rest assured that TripAdvisor and other review oriented websites have systems in place to recognize these fraudulent and unethical approaches to promotion. This request led to a question back to the hotel owner. We highlighted that if one could find an organization willing to write fake reviews and take on that type of risk, it would likely require a significant investment. If that annual investment was $15,000, what more do you think you could do with those funds to elevate your online reputation?


The look we received to that question was one of initial daze and confusion but with a little more prompting, we lead that owner down a path of new discovery.


Positive Investments That You Can Make in Improving Your Reputation

The first thing we talked about was training. Could a portion of funds that were going to be invested in TripAdvisor fake reviews be invested in developing your team? When was the last time your front of house associates had any type of guest engagement or customer service training? When is the last time your managers had a workshop that allowed them to develop their guest resolution skills? The answer we learned was more than five years.


While some employees might show outward resistance to training, in reality, most thrive on development and appreciate the opportunity to learn new skills and evolve their career.


We next inquired with the prospective client about strategy. What efforts are in place that are focused on working within the best practices? Is the leadership team monitoring daily and weekly results? Do they know how to monitor the back-end data on TripAdvisor? How does the review frequency for the hotel compare to that of others in the market? What is the hotel doing to drive positive feedback other than trying to fabricate it with TripAdvisor fake reviews? These questions proved to be thought provoking and initiated a deeper conversation about some of the approaches we take with clients.


Naturally reviews provide a wealth of information on what guests love most, and what they might wish for the next time they visit. This feedback is vital and when we asked the prospective client how many of their reviews they read on a weekly basis we learned that their bigger focus is the score and the ranking, while the content of a review often gets overlooked. A hotel which wants to improve on rankings and score, must value the feedback guests are sharing. While not all guest concerns can be resolved, many can be addressed with a shift in operations, employee training, or a small capital investment.


The Right Reputation Management Strategy Sets Your Hotel up for Longevity

As our conversations closed we shared with the prospective client that if it was their wish to beat the system via TripAdvisor fake reviews, we were not the agency or solution for their hotel. If however their goal was to earn their best presence this might be a good fit, provided their team was willing to partner with us to make this a daily, weekly and monthly focus. While there isn’t a magic light switch, there was obviously tremendous opportunity for this hotel to generate results and we were delighted to show them a more appropriate alternative.


At The Reputation Lab, we work with our hotel and restaurant partners to put effective strategies in place aimed at increasing review frequency, quality and more, which can affect your TripAdvisor ranking and other facets of your online footprint. If this is something your business might benefit from, we invite you to email us via our secure contact form to set up a no pressure consultation or call us at 855-979-6800.

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