Marty and Wendy met at the San Francisco Culinary Academy… and fell in love in pastry making class. They realized their ultimate goal when they opened their petite, breakfast cafe west of Twin Peaks, two years ago. The talented chefs worked long and hard and people began lining up for the fresh blueberry pancakes, yummy muffins, pumpkin waffles, gourmet egg dishes, and Blue Bottle coffee.
The little cafe was a homerun. Scores of happy diners raved, told their friends and commented on Yelp. Weekends were legendary as people happily waited in line to have ‘San Francisco’s best breakfast’.
The Monster from Yelp Lagoon
The two were pleased at the success of their small café. Not only had word spread, but numerous online reviews were consistently very positive.
One September morning, a Yelp salesperson paid them a visit. He indicated that for a mere $1000 a month Marty and Wendy could get dozens of positive reviews posted on line and bad reviews would, virtually, disappear.
The couple balked at the bizarre offer, as well as the daunting price tag. They were confident that their loyal customer base was sufficient to spread the word. The couple dubbed the salesman ‘the monster from Yelp’. He indicated that negative reviews might be the first thing reader’s encounter.
The hard-working restaurateurs were absolutely blown away. That day they spoke to friends and other small business owners. They compared notes. The Yelp practice was well known, in some circles.
Hearty and brave, the couple showed the Man from Yelp the door.
The names have been changed to protect the entrepreneurial.