What do you do when you're a business owner and you're concerned that Yelp might be undermining or damaging your business? Simple, undermine the reliability of your business' Yelp page by asking you customers to leave bad reviews on it! That's the curious strategy being taken by the owners of Botto Bistro, a five-year-old Italian restaurant in San Francisco.
Co-owners Davide Cerretini and Michele Massimo grew tired of the constant advertising inquiries and what they claim is "blackmailing" and review manipulation on the part of Yelp, which has the legal power to manipulate reviews.
So they did the most ridiculous thing possible by encouraging Botto Bistro customers to leave one-star Yelp reviews. They even offered deals -- such as 25% off pizza -- to people who leave crappy reviews.
Amazingly, business has increased since the campaign began, with Botto Bistro's owners claiming that they now have more and better customers than ever before.