By Jim Clanin
The increasing significance of favorable reviews for online marketing purposes lends particular urgency to repairing damaged customer relationships in certain situations. Some experts estimate roughly 95% of discontented customers will resume conducting business with a firm if the company takes rapid action to resolve their complaints. This brief article addresses four important tips for retaining a customer who becomes dissatisfied.
Customer Experiences Impact Business
Many studies demonstrate consumers often communicate with friends about goods and services of interest to them. Before the development of the Internet, conventional word-of-mouth advertising proved pivotal for some businesses, such as MLM companies. Today, as online social media sites and other forums accumulate extensive product reviews, the recommendations offered by customers often play a decisive role in marketing failures or successes. Virtually every modern business currently prioritizes favorable customer recommendations as important, as the development of online review software tools demonstrate.
One recent poll reports 71% of respondents feel more inclined to make purchases after receiving referrals at social media sites. Experts estimate roughly one in every 10 delighted customers submits a favorable review. Yet the White House Office of Consumer Affairs reports a single unhappy customer typically communicates about an unsatisfactory experience with at least 9 others. Some disgruntled consumers share unfavorable reviews with up to 20 people.
Emergency First-Aid For Damaged Customer Relationships
Under these circumstances, the marketplace benefits of assuaging dissatisfied consumers appear clear. Fortunately, by acting quickly to resolve a poor customer experience, businesses enjoy a good chance of regaining customer approval. These four steps offer assistance:
- Act quickly to address customer dissatisfaction: Waiting too long to redress a grievance decreases the likelihood of success.
- Treat customers courteously and respectfully: Dismissing a customer complaint out of hand, or ignoring it, won’t permit company representatives to learn about customer concerns.
- Maintain a professional, confident attitude while addressing complaints: Give customer service agents, or their supervisors, sufficient authority to take steps to resolve consumer complaints.
- Express empathy while offering a solution (if possible), such as a refund, a price discount, a replacement product, or other marketing incentive: Individual attention lets customers know the firm sincerely seeks to resolve their concerns. Empathy also helps re-establish rapport with the customer.
The Benefits of Restoring Customer Trust
While companies cannot always restore customer relations, in the majority of cases disgruntled consumers appreciate efforts to resolve their dissatisfaction. Businesses thatmaintain an online presence reap benefits from making an effort to retain customers and transform unhappy experiences into pleasant ones. Making this extra effort helps a company acquire a great reputation for providing superior customer service.