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Take That Machine and Shove It... and Other Negative Rants

Jodie Michalak's picture

Drawing an Audience: Part Three

Our Drawing an Audience series is intended for tattoo artists looking to maximize their profit potential by using to build long-term relationships with both new and existing clients.

Take that machine and shove it.
Perhaps not the best choice of words, but still they might be said.
In this series we want to remind artists to ask customers to REVIEW their service after it’s complete.  They can do this within minutes by visiting your member profile on 
Dealing with reviews is a double edge sword. You’re likely going to read the good, bad and the ugly about yourself. When they are good, they can be very, very good. But when they are bad, they can be downright rotten.
How do you handle a negative review while keeping your cool and maintaining your professionalism?  This is a tricky balance that can only be achieved by acceptance, and a willingness to right a wrong, followed again by acceptance.
How to Accept Criticism
Artists can just be so "feely", that’s part of what helps you bring so much passion and emotion to your work. Dealing with the darkness of a horror tattoo, or the happiness and innocence of a butterfly, you’ve likely seen it all (in a day’s work).
When you read a negative review about your skill or service (whether here or anywhere else) you may have the initial inclination to become defensive. Resist it.
Use this opportunity to reach out to your guest and determine a possible solution that works. Permanent body art is no laughing matter, which is exactly why the artist consultation is just so important. If you aren’t certain what your client wants, how can you possibly create a pleasing result?
First accept you aren’t perfect. Maybe you weren’t on top of your game, perhaps you weren’t focused on details, and it is quite possible you were tired, in a hurry, or just plain didn’t care as much as you should have. Not cool, but it happens.
How to Please a Disgruntled Buyer
Your buyer is not happy and they have told the world, which really sucks. Now you have the choice of sweeping it up and under the rug, or calling them back for a follow-up visit, which may be enough to have them remove their negative comments spread all over the web. 
Not every customer will allow you the chance to remedy the situation and that can make it all the more difficult to deal with a negative review. 
Instead you may need to "hook them" with a caring and responsive phone call, and be prepared to set a few unpaid hours aside in the shop. And yes it’s OK (at the end) to mention the public negative review they’ve made, with hopes they’ll feel differently and share that (as well).
Which leads to the next part, some people just like to complain, and these folks will never be satisfied. The next obvious solution is to ask all your current customers, repeat clients, and enthusiasts to follow your page and post a review after their service on your member profile here at 
Let the dust blow over, hold your head high, and take it all in stride.  Tomorrow is a new day filled with opportunity to please a customer. Don’t let feedback get you down, and remember there is always a grain of truth to everything said.
Use client reviews as a means to better your art and focus, but don’t ever let them bring you down. You aren’t perfect, no one expects you to be, but when it comes to permanence, you darn well better strive for it. What are your reviews teaching you? Listen and learn…
To build your reputation ask you clients to click "Review me" on your profile page or visit:
Newsletter Series: 
Drawing an Audience