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Medical Spa Medspa Advertising Marketing > Do not use YELP - it will kill your business

Our medspa has recently become the latest victim of Yelp. We've had a well developed listing on Yelp for over a year. A few weeks ago, we received a call from their telesales rep and he was pushing us hard to advertise with Yelp. The cost - $350+ month, with no legitimate ROI from this fee that I could surmise. I politely declined. A week later, *ALL* of our positive reviews were "filtered" leaving us with the only 2 negative reviews and a 1 star rating. When I brought up this issue to the Customer Support - they gave me the run-around and I got another call from their telesales rep. Again, he was pushing me to advertise and he said to me that he can push down the negative reviews and reinstate the positive reviews if we advertised monthly. This is nothing short of extorsion. After more research, I found that there is an ongoing class-action lawsuit going forward against Yelp for this practice. FTC recently released a list of 685 complaints against Yelp. Yelp is the new internet mafia and they will destroy your business if given a chance. Things you can do to combat their tactics: 1. Do not claim your listing on Yelp. Stay below radar. 2. If you claimed your listing, it is only a matter of time before they come calling. Record all conversations just like we did with their sales reps and keep as evidence. 3. Take daily screen shots of your account and the review status. 4. Best and most successful strategy - make Yelp irrelevant! Have your happy clients post positive reviews in other search engines: Google, BIng, Yahoo, CitySearch, Yellowpages, Angie's List, etc. The more you show up in reviews elsewhere, Yelp becomes irrelevant.

02.26 | Unregistered CommenterJMS

JMS, that's tough to hear and I hope you guys get it resolved. Thanks for sharing.

I hear this rather frequently from our clients who have tried Yelp advertising in the past. It's a tough spot to be in, knowing how important Yelp can be. Honestly, a bad Yelp profile can destroy a business. In fact, we know of at least one business that had to completely rebrand because of a negative Yelp listing.

It's hard to completely ignore Yelp, even if you hate it as many do. In fact, Yelp is now what drives Apple maps and is the backbone of the GPS systems in newer luxury vehicles. When you think about it that way, you really can begin to feel like you're between a rock and a hard place.

Good luck with this situation. It's truly frustrating and really hard to sort through.

I have also heard this feedback quite often from our providers. There are other avenues of getting your business out to consumers who are looking to receive treatments.

YELP SHOULD BE SHUT DOWN. They have done this to many businesses. I know businesses that have been destroyed because of not having a budget to advertise with yelp. They should become irrelevant. If more and more business do not use them they will VANISH one day

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