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How To Deal With Negative Podcast Reviews?

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Here is a bitter truth, being a podcaster or, in general, an online content creator is not easy. Not everyone will like your podcast. There may even be some people who dislike it strongly. That’s why it is imperative to know how to deal with negative podcast reviews if you wish to be successful.

Poor reviews might sometimes not be a major concern, but they can hamper the growth of your audience. People tend to read podcast reviews before listening to a podcast. And, if, unfortunately, your podcast has a lot of negative reviews, they may opt to listen to another podcast.

So, if you’re looking for ways to deal with negative podcast reviews like experts, then this article is for you!

Why Do People Give Negative Podcast Reviews?

There are usually two reasons behind people giving bad reviews for your podcast:

  • They want to offer you a critique
  • They are just cruel

People offering a critique of your podcast are actually doing you a favor by pinpointing the areas of improvement. Positive criticism, if taken conclusively, can help you polish up your episodes and make them more captivating for your listeners.

But, despite how much effort you put into your episodes, no matter how great content you create for your audience, some people will give you bad reviews with no logical reason to back their comments.

How To React To Negative Reviews?

So, you have received a negative podcast review, what’s next? 

Nothing is Personal

It is important not to take negative reviews or comments personally when you encounter them. Despite the fact that your podcast is an extension of you, keep in mind that your show is still not you. Negative feedback about your show has nothing to do with you personally. 

Your skill, your expertise, and your knowledge are not a reflection of them, nor do they take anything away from the amazing and passionate individual you are.

In the next strategy, we’ll provide some tips on how to deal with negative reviews constructively, but before you can implement any of the following, you should keep in mind that no matter what the reviews say, it should never diminish your self-belief or passion for podcasting.

Respond

Negative podcast reviews sometimes can’t be replied to directly, but you can indirectly respond by approaching them in a future episode.

Your audience will see that you care about what they have to say. An individual review can be reported to the platform it was posted on if it appears to have no merit or appears to be personal in nature.

In Apple Podcasts, for example, you will be able to choose from one of the following reasons:

  • This review contains offensive content
  • This review is not a review or is off-topic
  • I disagree with this review
  • My concern is not listed here

You may, of course, respond directly to the reviewer if the review is published on your website. A dialogue to gain a deeper understanding of critics’ issues would help you improve your show. But, starting a war of words is never a good option. Always keep it civil. 

Apologize Where Needed

There’s a possibility you said something offensive. For example, you may have misrepresented a fact. You may have accused someone of something they did not do. As humans, we all make mistakes, but you’ll have to apologize to some listeners if you upset them.

Apologizing is surprisingly effective. A response and apology to an upset reviewer can turn 33% of negative reviews into positive ones.

In most cases, giving an apology online is easier than doing so in person. Express your regrets to the reviewer and empathize with their situation. You should apologize on your next episode if the mistake was really egregious.

With that being said, it’s important to be careful when apologizing. You are not obligated to apologize to the listener if you don’t think their review doesn’t deserve it.

Schedule a Time Limit

It can be quite overwhelming to read negative comments, particularly if you struggle mentally and emotionally. A good strategy is to only read your comments during set times every week.

Set aside time in your schedule for reading and responding to your comments, and stick to that time frame. Putting yourself in this headspace will allow you to be open to hearing from your listeners as you are mentally prepared for the activity. Additionally, you will avoid getting lost in negative thoughts by spending a set amount of time reading your comments.

During your set time, read over and respond to all comments and reviews – both positive and negative – make any notes you need, and at the end of your set time, stop. Taking constructive criticism and applying the changes where possible can boost your confidence – leaving the negativity behind.

Draw it Out

Your last option if the reviewer won’t change or remove the bad review is to drown it out with more positive reviews.

Here are some tips!

First, improve the quality of your podcast. Correct the underlying problem (if there is one) based on the feedback from the bad review. You may need to revamp your question structure or structure your questions more effectively. Seek feedback and make improvements.

It’s impossible to please everyone, but there are probably a few ways to make your audience happier with your podcast.

Second, get reviews from your audience. This is something that many podcasters overlook. They expect reviews to come by themselves. But if you do not ask for reviews, you will not get them.

At the end of each episode, ask your listeners to rate your podcast. Post a link to the review on your Facebook or Twitter page. You may also include a link to your episode notes on the episode’s page on your website.

Negative Podcast Reviews: Final Thoughts

It’s vital to accept that bad reviews are inevitable as you grow your podcast. Nobody can create the perfect podcast experience. Make mistakes, but don’t beat yourself up if you want to improve. If you are wondering how to handle bad reviews, we recommend using them to improve your podcast.

“When you take risks you learn that there will be times when you succeed and there will be times when you fail, and both are equally important.” – Ellen DeGeneres.

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