How To Turn A Questionable Comment Into A Positive Outcome

Last Update: Dec 19, 2021

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Hi, Everyone...

As a follow-up to my last blog here on the comment feature that we all love and hate, I decided to go through an example of what some would consider being an unacceptable comment received from a request I made for one of my posts on my websites.

I want to show how I turned that comment into a positive (IMO) through the reply I provided to it...There were what many would think of as rocky (blunt?) viewpoints presented in the comment and my reply as well...

That is okay...

The name of the commenter will not be included, as that has no relevance to what the point is of this post (again, showing how to turn what some members here might consider a possibly unacceptable comment for not sticking to the subject of the article, for speaking more of the website design, etc.)

The post subject was related to reasons to become an affiliate for one of the programs we offer, and it pointed out details of the program for readers.

Note I have taken out naming the program as it too is immaterial to the point of this post - turning a questionable comment into an acceptable one...


Requested Comment:

"Hi Dave,

Wow, you.ve got a lot going on here!

The Affiliate site you offer in your post sounds intriguing. Your material is presented well. For someone that is looking to get started in affiliate marketing, this could be very appealing. When someone offers something like this. I start checking out their site. You have several broken links, including "Blog Training" and "Smart Training." This was a red flag for me.

Also, for me personally, with all the pop-ups and bots, it seems a little gimmicky. I found it intrusive, but I read through and checked out your site to give you honest feedback. I have to be honest, my first impulse was to get out of there because it was too busy.

On a side note, I am also curious, if this program is so good, why are you in WA? It seems in conflict. The thing I like best about WA is that it's not gimmicky, it's straight-forward without all of this hype. Hype screams fraud. I certainly wouldn't give up $300, or even click for more info from this site.

My advice would be to at minimum, get rid of the pop-ups. They are annoying and come up before I've read anything. I guess your bot is ok, some folks like to hear the message. But either take your menu items out that don't go anywhere or fix them so they do, because that was the biggest turn off to me.

Good luck in your venture!

Stay well and thrive!

XXXX"

...

Here is my reply to the comment in full (as is the above comment):

"Hi, XXX

Sorry to take so long getting back to you...I have been out of the net for a few days and now am catching up...

Your questions and comments seem to be intended to justify your challenge to the approach we are using but can be easily addressed, which I will in this reply.

I do appreciate that you are digging deeper, as that indicates to me that you are interested, perhaps from a negative point of view, but nonetheless (based on the depth you went into, it was not just for getting a comment approval/credit)...

...

Let's go through your comments and questions one by one:

...

(1) Your comment: "You have several broken links, including "Blog Training" and "Smart Training." This was a red flag for me."

A: This I will have to check out, thanks for pointing this out although IMO that has nothing to do with the program in question. The XXXXXXXXX is not associated or linked to this page other than I am writing the article and reporting on what the affiliate program is all about (and I am the creator of the program?).

The links you mention have nothing to do with the affiliate program. Nonetheless, as stated, we will look into the broken links which are for something entirely different. This site has been around for quite some time, and there are always going to be some issues with broken links, etc.

...

(2) Your comment: 'Also, for me personally, with all the pop-ups and bots, it seems a little gimmicky. I found it intrusive, but I read through and checked out your site to give you honest feedback. I have to be honest, my first impulse was to get out of there because it was too busy."

A: Perhaps in your eyes "gimmicky" but not in the eyes of others. Not sure what your expectations might be for a "good" website, but in the end, it really comes down to value. Does the site offer value to the reader. In the case of this website, speaking subjectively (it is my site after all), having one person who may feel this way does not affect the overall positive reactions I get from readers.

Again, this comment has nothing to do with the affiliate program that is discussed in the article, but since you are "digging down" I can see how you would look for anything negative (in your eyes to support your red flag theory). I think in your zeal you may be throwing out the baby with the bathwater so to speak...

...

(3) Your Comment: "On a side note, I am also curious, if this program is so good, why are you in WA? It seems in conflict. The thing I like best about WA is that it's not gimmicky, it's straightforward without all of this hype. Hype screams fraud..."

A: This is again a subjective opinion and I read this after seeing your other comments above it. These seemingly use and point to the age-old "gimmick" that many WA members use - negative reviews and a bait and switch to recommending WA over the oftentimes totally unrelated program or software being reviewed.

This program "is so good" because it offers the member the chance to build a business plan that is based on their situation as opposed to trying to push them into a one-way (our way or you will fail and it is not our fault it is yours because you didn't do like we said - no accountability there for the offerer) method that many people do not fit well into.

Let's look at success rates for most of these programs to include WA.

They are between 5% to 1% (or stated another way 95 to 99% fail!). Did you know that?

Check out the stats (use Google "success rates for affiliate marketers") and you will see.

This is why the XXXXXXXXX provides a variety of ways to make money online, some faster than others, but all are viable. The student can pick and choose based on a number of factors - THAT makes a difference right out of the gate we have found.

One method we teach IS affiliate marketing. WA has its approach and we teach a similar one. But...

There are a number of ways to approach the business model. Did you know that other approaches are faster, more effective, and people who try these alternatives succeed more often and faster?

Approaches such as launch-jacking with reviews, video reviews, or paid ads; or using simple and fast to create landing pages or opt-in pages with cheap YouTube or Bing Ads can work - and you do not need a full-blown website, or it could be using social and eventually email marketing, or it could be even word-of-mouth marketing that floats your boat.

None of these methods uses the articles approach (nor the negative "scam" title approach I see so often used by WA members that is more and more being exposed for what it is. Negative marketing tactics have a negative impact on such marketers over time IMO).

As to why I am with WA still after 6 1/2 years, it is because there are some valuable tools and features such as the keyword tool, being able to get website comments as yours is, and also to keep up with what is going on in the online marketing world.

I am a member of several online marketing programs, not just WA. I was a teacher for years with colleges and universities, and to be effective, you have to know the marketing or the field of study. There is no "one-way" approach that works for all.

If someone is telling you that they are not being truthful. There are bits and pieces you can pick up from most programs though, and these can improve what you are doing. That is why I am a member of WA.

Now you may think that WA is the be-all and end-all, but believe me, there are a lot of ways to skin a cat, and WA is just one (and not the best way IMO). Unless you have tried out some of these other methods, I do not think you have much room to criticize. I am not talking about writing a negative review either, anyone can use that tactic (but more and more people are seeing through this and also "running away" as I would)...

...

Your Comment: "My advice would be to at minimum, get rid of the pop-ups. They are annoying and come up before I've read anything. I guess your bot is ok, some folks like to hear the message. But either take your menu items out that don't go anywhere or fix them so they do, because that was the biggest turn-off to me."

A: I appreciate your unsolicited advice on how to set up the website, Even if they have nothing to do with the article or the affiliate program that is highlighted. Please be aware that your attitude is a turn-off for me and many and I could not help thinking that you are likely turning off many people if this is how you are operating your content and recommendations.

You try to justify the statement that you would not pay $300 or click further based on your drilling down and looking for reasons that have nothing to do with the affiliate program. Fair enough, I am used to seeing this from some WA members who use the same tactics to promote WA when the success rates are abysmal, as the method that is taught on WA is rather one-dimensional and most people have a tough time earning any money using the method.

Those that do succeed (and yes there are some, like me) often end up waiting for a long period before seeing any earnings, or they resort to adding in other approaches and shoulder models where they are actually approaching the market using the same work effort to hit two or more areas they can earn.

The prettiness or not of a website makes no difference (to most people) if they can see the approach recommended will earn them money, That is the bottom line, People do not want to spend 6 months or a year and not earn anything.

This happens far too often. Affiliates are promoting a program (XXXXXXXX) that uses a novel approach where students:

(1) build their own business plan (with our help and lessons) based on their unique situation (skills, time, interests, need for cash, models available, etc.);

(2) they then use our tools and resources to actually implement their business plan; and

(3) they have access to weekly live coaching and a community of entrepreneurs to interact/partner with to get things done, and most importantly, earn money.

They buy into the plan they build, increasing the chance they will follow through. The reviews on a regular basis we recommend help fine-tune the effort. They use the included tools and resources to scale up.

And so it goes...
...

Have a great day and I hope that my reply has not rained on your day as your comment has not rained on mine!

BTW...I think you should stick to promoting only WA, but please do change that negative attitude. People are tired of the bait-and-switch tactics and all the negativity unless it is WA. You are not doing the readers any favors...

I wish you all the success...

Cheers!

Coach Dave : )"


Teaching Points:

The commenter used what I consider to be tactics that I see too often with WA members. The negative approach, the word fraud (trigger word?), the pointing out of a number of things not related to the content that justified his key statement that he considers the whole thing to be suspect or a fraud...

Rather than out-of-hand disapproving of his comment, which many likely would have, I took a serious look at his points one by one and added my own view. In that process, I also dropped in plenty of details on WHY his assessment is off base (IMO)...

There were plenty of opportunities to do this based on the comment, and I think it also provided a chance for me to point out some of the tactics that I personally find so loathsome (as do many others out there in the online marketing world) used by some members of WA.

A side benefit for anyone reading this is that if they see such a negative review out there (i.e. with fraud or scam - powerful words too often misused) in blog-land they can avoid the bait and switch tactic being used.

Or at the least, they will know that they risk failing at building a business online because the program was not a fit for their situation...It is not just the sale that is important, everyone. It is being true to your readers and tribe...

...

How Can YOU Use This Experience?

Well, I will leave that up to you, dear reader...

There are always going to be differences of opinion, and that is okay. Having a rationale to rebut these alternative opinions is key.

Often you can open the eyes of readers and the commenter when you address the commenter's points rather than out of hand disapproving the comment.

Rather than disapproving such a comment, maybe better to use it to bring home some of the positives and even point out some weaknesses in the point of view that was presented will help people understand what the post is all about?

Anyway...

Let me know what you think in the comments below, please. I think there are a lot of subjects that could be discussed between this comment and the reply that I provided to that comment. We can learn and implement what we learned maybe...

...


Cheers!

Coach Dave : )

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Recent Comments

17

Dave,
There will always be someone who does not agree with an article that is written to be informative and educational, that is to be expected.
One thing I have taken note of over my years at WA is that if we disapprove comments because we disagree with them then we are short-changing ourselves. There is value even in negative comments, they give us another way to evaluate how effective we are doing in relating to our audience.
I would rather have a negative comment than one that is bland and with nothing to add what my post or article was about.
Negative comments can be a very positive way for us to look at how we interact and overcome negativity on our posts. Finding the positive points that you brought up proves that taking the negative comment and teaching us how to use that has made you better at what you do.
Thanks for the free coaching,
Jerry

Thanks for sharing this post Dave.
I like the way you responded to the negative points that this person had. Your response to each of his points was very nicely put.

Thanks, Helen...The comments and replies have also brought up some really important learning points as well...

Cheers, and enjoy the holidays (be safe...)!

Dave : )

Thanks Dave, same to you. Happy holidays.

Good morning Dave and thanks for the lesson here. I have found a similar way of responding to constructive feedback. To add to your own lesson I do my best to find the positive in the negative commentary.

For example, “thank you for taking the time to help me make continuous improvements to my site for the rest of my visitors…” is one way I like to head these types of replies back.

I feel as though it adds value for my visitors to have an opportunity to see that their opinions matter and the time they chose to take to provide the comments is appreciated.

Also, I really like how you addressed the topics that you flat out disagreed with! Goes to show that not just with our babies (ie websites, wink) but in all areas of our life, that we can show our level of professionalism and respect without being mean or nasty or inadvertently starting an all out message war lol.

All my best and hoping you are well,
Teanna

Hi, Teanna!

Thanks for stopping by and I am surprised you found this post, as I am pretty sure it is being suppressed by the "Algo Gods" (algorithms that among other things denigrate visibility of posts that are/or potentially contain negative information)...

You are definitely on the right track with the way you handle the questionable comments IMO. Most certainly I welcome most comments even if not all are rosy and fawning in nature.

When hard questions are asked you can clear them up and others that come by the site will see that you are not deleting anything negative (I see this)...

Surely not everyone will agree with everything you may be stating all the time, so a negative or questioning sort of comment is natural to be found...

Have a great day! I am well here and hope is the same for you....Enjoy the holidays...

Cheers!
Dave : )

Thanks for the lesson, Dave. Good examples.

How are you, Stanley? Thanks for popping through and dropping a comment with your thoughts here...All the best and enjoy the holidays! Cheers! Dave : )

Recovering well, Dave. Wish you a great holiday season and successful 2022! 🎄

Thanks, mate - I wish the same for you! : )

Good morning Dave,

I hope you're doing well. Thank you for a very informative blog post and your very wise words.

I must admit I was thinking about you about a week ago as I hadn't seen any blog posts from you recently!

In the past, I have received similar types of comments. However, I believe it's quite easy as you have proven to turn those comments around and make something negative into a positive! I guess it's a bit like if we reply to someone in an angry way, we will get an angry answer-back! But if we reply in a gentle way, we will receive a gentle answer back!

Have a great day, Dave.

Roy

Hello, Roy...

Yes, I have been pretty busy with other activities (both personal and business-wise), so have not been here as much as I would like to...

Things are kind of in a state of stasis (not better, not worse) on the personal side and on the business side, things are crazy busy at the moment...

In regards to the comment/my reply...

The commenter meant well and did take the time and add in his reasoning for his conclusion(s) which I do appreciate, even if many points were not related to the content.

In his eyes, these other factors mentioned kept him from reading what was in the content it appears. I mentioned below in a reply to Linda what I thought was a factor (a MAJOR one) - distraction.

The blog post was one way to introduce the affiliate program and we are of course using other means to do this. The advantage of creating a blog post on a WA-hosted site?

I can create a blog and have people start seeing and commenting on what we have on offer. I can explain why they should have an interest in promoting the offer.

The other means (social, word of mouth, contests, etc.) will work as well, maybe better, but this post was a way to get the word out, as with the other marketing tactics...

Cheers, and enjoy the upcoming holidays!

Dave : )

Good morning Dave,

I am glad all is well and that you are keeping busy. I know what it's like, I would like to spend a lot more time here, however, we know that sometimes it's just not possible!

I agree with you Dave, I believe the commenter did mean well and at least he wrote a detailed comment. I have just read your reply to Linda and I am with you.

It's important to have a funnel where we can capture readers email addresses and communicate with them on a regular basis.

It's interesting that you are doing YouTube ads, I heard some years ago that they were cheap! I kind of guessed that may not be the same now, as things change quickly.

Thank you for the useful info, Dave, it's appreciated.

Roy

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