Yes, there I’ve said it, the ‘T’ word.

In recent times Tripadvisor has come in for a lot of flack, some of which is justified. But here’s a thought, how about using it to your advantage?

James Lewis has just written a post for Air Hospitality & I share a lot of the same sentiments as him. If there is a persistent theme running through your Tripadvisor feedback then maybe it’s time to take your head out of the sand & address the problem.

Again Lewis also addresses the snobbery of professional journalists, citing acclaimed restaurant critic AA Gill & ‘Citizen journalism.’

Lewis uses the killer line;

This is 2016. Transparency is King.

Something that Guardian stable mates Marina o’Loughlin & Jay Rayner tried their best to brush off when I quizzed them on why they didn’t/rarely publish their receipts. Clearly not wanting to answer the point about transparency, Rayner tweeted:

…you’re clearly the utter putz you always were. No point arguing with you.

And that is the point. No system is perfect, but to have journalists trying to say that they are better than the rest of us, is about as true as I am the tooth fairy.

Of course there were a number of chefs cosying up to Rayner & O’Loughlin, like attention deprived children waving their hands in the air shouting ME ME ME! What they fail to understand, is that these journalists don’t come from hospitality (Rayner famously did 6hours as a kitchen porter & claimed he had survived). Instead chefs & their restaurants are material that they serve up to their Editors & Twitter followers.

The fact is this Tripadvisor, in the main, is a pretty good barometer of how your business is doing. I’m not going to say it’s the best or couldn’t do with some tweaking, but use it constructively & address the troll problem in a polite but firm manner (or legally if you feel comfortable doing so).

The worse case scenario, if Tripadvisor is so bad, then stop using it. The industry can’t have their cake & eat it; sharing good reviews but moaning when a less glowing experience is published. But the truth of the matter is, far more people use Tripadvisor than read Gill, O’Loughlin & Rayner combined.

So ignore the clamour of trying to get a retweet from somebody on Twitter by trying to please them & see what the public are saying to you.