Online commentary seems to bring out the worst in people. It’s the place were trolls live and civility goes to die. Get rid of the trolls hiding under your virtual bridges, however, and you might make a whole lot more money.
A study published in the June Journal of Consumer Research suggests that negative consumer reviews written with a touch of politeness can actually help sell an item, and even convince consumers to pay more for it. Such civility also increases the likelihood that readers will like and trust the writers themselves, the study found.
“Our research raises the intriguing possibility that brands might benefit when polite customers write reviews of their products — even when those reviews include negative opinions,” write the authors, researchers Ryan Hamilton, Kathleen D. Vohs, and Ann L. McGill.