How can I turn an angry customer into a loyal customer?
I do not deal well with confrontation. My first instinct when I get a customer complaint is to ignore it and let them go. (Terrible approach, I know!) This is something I need to work on, and the best way for me to do this is to face our angriest customers. We just launched and have had our ups and downs. Instead of letting those customers go, I want to turn their experience around. What's the best way to approach them and change their mind? Thank you!
So impressed by your self awareness and desire to engage in conflict when it is very uncomfortable for you, Becca.
Your thinking is also sound business strategy.
Most displeased or angry customers just want to know you care about their feelings, just like you and I hope people care about our feelings when we're dissatisfied or upset.
The best approach is to listen, choose not to get defensive, show them you heard them by paraphrasing their complaint back to them and asking if you got it right (so you know you are solving the right problem), reassuring them you want to help them (this greatly reduces stress and anger once they realize you're on their team, value them as a customer and human being (we all want that, right?), and are going to work with them.
You can ask them what would solve the problem for them. It might be different than you anticipate and even less challenging or less costly. Be patient with them, reassure them again if necessary and model the poise you would like them to feel and exhibit back to you.
Problem solve with them, even offering choices if you can't give them exactly what they desire. You may be able to completely satisfy them most of the time but maybe not always.
If people feel heard, understood, respected, valued and helped (mitigating their pain), they can usually, even if not happy, accept some pain.
Do this and you will repair a lot of conflicts, heal relationships, show off your customer service and brand and win back or build relationships and profit. If you repair customer dissatisfaction you may so impress that they laud you to family, friends, on social media and be a repeat customer.
This can be challenging to confront a angry person. If one reacts at the same tone or temperament as the upset customer, than that will surely escalate the
situation. First of all is to not take the conversation personal. perhaps this customer has very valid points that can help your company in the long run; and second, if the customer is upset than listening to them and stating how you could agree with them will go a long, long way.
Becca, Give them what they want, listen to them, don't shout at them. If you give them what they want they will be happy. And if you think you cannot do that, the best thing is to take a leave from work for some weeks and hire a professional to help you deal with them. Before you come back, they will shake you with a smile in their face because they got what they want.
But make sure you hire someone you can trust that will not go away with your clients
When faced with angry customers our initial instincts are to ignore, none of us like confrontation but its always good to remember that whilst they may go away initially, they will come back and often angrier than before. I always find honesty is the best policy by explaining you are trying to do things better and if they have any advice from a customers point of view, you would love to hear it. Do your best to make to customer feel listened to but remember to stay loyal to your business as well and whilst we want to please everyone unfortunately you have to accept that if you have tried and the customer is still not happy, you cannot bend completely. Offer the customer the chance to let you now how they feel, give you feedback and then try and meet the customer half way by giving them a discount on their next purchase or a voucher or if relevant, give them a small voucher off their next purchase. If you show willing, that customer is likely to come back and you will be seen to be trying to make things better. Always remember though that you can't please everyone and there is a line when it comes to offering freebies and things, do the best you can and if the customer is still not happy, explain that you have tried to resolve the situation and are sorry they are not happy and leave at that. Always respond rather than ignore and once you have done this, you can rest assured you have tried.
First of all, Don't get anger with him/her. By watching, he/she shouting on you and delivering all his frustration over you. Before going to handle this situation be prepare for these...
1. Go with fresh mood
2. Listen carefully
3. Try to reach the beneath of problem
4. Speak with little smile
5. Take care the way of speaking (Tone)
6. Apologise whatever you have mistaken or not
7. Give him Assurance/believe (This is not going to happen again)
8. Offer them some surprise gift.
9. Greet him
10. Love your customer
Always keep in mind before going to handle any anger people, He/she is anger. You are not! So be lovable by loving others.
As a person, I know it feels discouraging to know that not all the customers you have will be very delighted with your products/services. This issue is pretty normal though to all kinds of businesses but the tension of an irate customer can really give you a stressful day. On contrary, it will also test your patience. That's why a good customer service representative in any businesses needs to have greater patience since things like this are inevitable. In situations like this, you need to maintain high respect to them and acknowledge their needs and concerns. Also, always give them the assurance that all their complaints are well taken care of. One thing also is to keep calm and maintain proper communication with them. Be persistent in you ways of working out with them so that you can rebuild their trust to your company's services.
Acknowledge their complaint as valid.
Tell them you will make it right.
Actually make it right.
Offer something extra in addition (e.g. free service, offer to become beta tester for new features, refund for their bad experience).
It's great to see that you want to get better at dealing with angry customers! I think if we're honest, we all need focused effort and fine-tuning here. Especially in the beginning, you're going to upset some people. And in the grand scheme of things, that's okay! You just need to make it clear to customers that you're on their side, and that you want to do what it takes to make their lives (and/or jobs) better.
Most people (particularly customers) love when you listen and act on their problems. When you're able to solve someone's problem, and then go the extra mile for them, you become a hero! What business doesn't want to be a hero for their customers?
Its all about politeness,even if its aint your misteke but he has complained to you,listen to him/her well and show some concern,don't blame anyone in the conversation between the two of you,but calm him or her down and promise to work upon it to his or her satisfaction.
Remember,fire can't stop fire but can kindle it.....always put a smile and promise to keep him/her in touch.
The power is ever in the hands of the customer,once he comes to you,drop your ego,prestige and handle him carefully coz he/she is the reason to your sucess.....he may turnish your company name just by ,the *mouth* he can go around the world exposing your weakeness to handle his issue and at the same time he can market you to another level.
*Customer sovereignity*should always come into your minds first
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Customers are always right. I know most customer likes discounted product or services, this might do the trick. Do your best within the provision of the company to satisfy your customers need. Attend to their queries even when the solution is not at hand. A good smile and attitude will go a long way.
I have worked in the community centres in Singapore. There are some demanding and educated residents whom insists they are right but actually common sense can tell they are wrong. So I reason with them until they say I am not eligible to wear my uniform as I do not know my job well. I told them that we have our duties and different staffs handle different things. As the staff is on leave can he wait and give us the telephone number and our staff will call him.
Finally when he leave he feels guilty and apologies but I keep thanking him for his feedback. Although I am angry at that time but I know very well that I cannot challenge with the customers as they will challenge me back so I try to explain to them patiently until they feel guilty and apologies.
Have empathy for other human beings.
The best service I've experienced when I've been displeased with a product or service has been when the company doesn't make getting help turn into a wrestling match and war of wills - "our policy" and triggered, defiant workers grinding me down.
Value your customers/clients like your friends or family and the vast majority of them will not exploit you and will respect you and be loyal.
This is a broad description of doing a conflict repair.
Conflict Management Services
The first thing is to admit when you have made a mistake and apologize! The second is to request the opportunity to make things right and, when you do, either charge your cost or provide the service for free.
A confrontation can be changed in your favor instantly with a smile to begin with. Facing the customer and understanding the reasons of their complaints is important to me because I get to know where can I improve and how I can build trust and terms with people even if they are not happy with my product and service. Trust me once you meet them, they will open up and if they do, they will speak something that you can hold on and get them back. on the worst you will learn about the improvements and developments you can make to avoid something like this in future.
you have to face people in all situations, start meeting one after another and by the time you have your third meet, you will know how to turn the situation around.
Firstly you must recognize that there must be a reason for customer's angst. Even if you feel your company has been fair, there must be some issue of communication, misplaced expectations and lack of awareness as possible causes of frustation. I look at these as excellent opportunities to hear the customer out, let them bring out all the frustation they need to and then come forth with a plan that customer agrees will rectify the situation completely. Usually if we can do this the cutomer becomes favorably disposed for all times. The thing to do is set up periodic meetings to review satisfaction and therby signal that you are serious about the relationship. Please remeber, it takes very little to lose a customer, but takes a herculean effort to acquire one.
Two parts here.
First off, I don't think you're necessarily wrong to let some of these go. It's impossible to satisfy everyone and if you're making a product that requires any standardization at all, then inherently you're going to get some frustrated people who want the product just one level more customized. Also, you're probably interacting on the internet. You're going to get some unsolvable people.
Once you filter out some trolls, an angry customer can be a really valuable asset. You have someone who deeply wants to share with you why your product doesn't work. Especially when you're getting started, anger is definitely preferable to silence. That means someone saw your product, realized their need was going to be met, but then something happened along the way that soured the customer relationship. They may be angry, but they really just want to make things work.
The approach I would recommend would be first to resolve the issue. They came to you with a need and until you take the thorn out of the lion's paw, they're not going to be interested in working with you. Trying to go any other path without solving the problem will inevitably increase frustrations.
Once you've gotten there though, the best way to approach could be from a learning mindset. They have some insights that they want to pass on and you as a company need to hear them to make a better product. That's a great match! (Although it might not feel great). If you can get them on board with helping, teaching you how to fix the product for them and for others, this could have the potential to convert them into a satisfied customer.
I hope this helps! Best of luck with the customers and I hope they come around.
Hi Becca , every human being in this world has his or her own strengths and weaknesses and when it comes to business you have a very short time to respond in the best way to your external customers to gain value for your business.
If you see the evolution of business management you will find out that the concept of having a TEAM in place at the right time is very important.
I feel that in your situation the time has come where you need a CUSTOMER SERVICE member who can not only address customer issues but can also work as Business Development representative and at the same time Customer Satisfaction and Retention adviser with feedback from customers.This will be a soft interface between you and your customers.The decision is yours decide in the best interests of your business.
The other option is that you go rigorous training and development into this area with the help of external trainers and coaches which will again cost you some money and time.But your problem is not guaranteed to be resolved in that case also because the situation you are in could be because of the conflict of an entrepreneur owner who wants to stay confident and motivated from the product he is selling rather than get demotivated from the complaints of the customers.An individual is afterall an individual human being with restricted energy and motivation .A business needs a good interacting TEAM which absorbs these problems and still keep the environment motivated to keep moving in the industry.
I dont exactly know your product but inclusion of a customer feedback area can provide good data and information to have a focused QA or QC function in future.
Hope this helps.
Like JC touched on - you need to define the problems that are occurring and have solutions to resolve each. All problems don't have the same solutions and you need to not just define their individual solutions, but also fix why each occur to begin with.
Take responsibility for your business and its shortcomings. Make things right and go out of your way to do so. Fix the problem so it doesn't happen again and show/tell/illustrate to the customer/client how you've done that.
To get them to return you may need to make a great offer to show some sacrifice and concern for them.
Make your business about your clients, not your customers. Clients are those who you truly look out for their best interests. Customers are those who simply exchange money for goods and/or services.
And lastly, remove the risk of doing business with you. For example, I guarantee results and believe any business can do something similar. You can't provide some sort of guarantee, you either don't have a solid program or don't have confidence in your delivery consistency.
And if that's the case, you'll continue to have the same problems you have now until you get those issues resolved.
great insights here. I liked the structured approach by Anne. she put step-by-step method. Allow me to put my top tips:
1. the great news is you know your limitations. You are already changing your mind set about angry customers and customer complains. These are extremely beneficial feedback to you on areas need improvement. So after resolving the problem, make sure you review your business practices so t dosn't happen aain with customers.
2. Let the angry customer vent like a boiling pot. Nothing will appen before that. During the venting phase listen to understand and fre your mind from preparing any answer. Just put all your energy to listen. May be taking notes as well.
3. See what the customer want done, and what you can do. reach a middle ground or best possible solution. Then ask the customer upfront if this mishappening will prevent him / her from repeating business with you.
4. After solving the problem, follow up to make sure things are fixed and in place. Foloww up makes big difference. It shows you are. Keep connected with and ngage your customers to prevent them from going to competition.
Wish you all success.