Restaurant reviews – both positive and negative – pack a punch. TripAdvisor found that 94 percent of U.S. restaurant diners base their dining decisions off of online reviews. The sweet spot for ratings is four stars and higher: According to Review Trackers, consumers don’t trust businesses or restaurant operators with reviews of less than four stars, and 33 percent of diners won’t eat at restaurants where the ratings on Yelp, TripAdvisor and Google are lower than four stars. A Harvard Business School study found that restaurants can boost their revenue by 5-9 percent for every star added to a Yelp review. Playing reviews to your advantage requires a deft response, particularly to your negative reviews (though potential brand ambassadors may be hiding out in both your positive and negative reviews). A thoughtful, calm, well-written response can turn a bad review on its head and make a reader – if not the reviewer themselves – want to give you a try. In a recent report from Modern Restaurant Management, Izzy Kharasch of the restaurant consulting company Hospitality Works advises operators go back through two years of online reviews for their restaurant and respond to each one personally. Thank the person for bringing a problem to your attention, apologize for not meeting their expectations, and invite them to contact you personally. Ask them back to your restaurant and check on them personally – you may or may not want to offer a free appetizer or round of drinks. Your treatment may motivate them to post a positive updated review and to recommend you to friends.