Turning Customer Mistakes Into Raving Fans
When you make a mistake with a customer, should you write them off as lost -- never to return again?
Nope. There have been numerous studies which show that a customer who has had a problem and gotten it resolved in a timely manner and to their satisfaction is a more loyal customer than one who has never had a problem.
I've found that to be true too. One of my biggest fans is a customer who started out on slippery footing. She's been a repeat customer for three years now.
From a situation that could have been a disaster to one that ended up being great, our response as business people gives us the control to turn that customer into a "raving fan."
So how do you turn a lemony situation into lemonade in your business?
- Use the human touch. Pick up the phone and connect. Don't try to tame a rough situation using email. You'll lose.
- Offer a special gift or extra compensation on your product or service. That could be a valuable add on product or a free month's service.
- Ask the customer what it would take to make them happy. You'll find that it's normally something you can accommodate very easily.
About the Author
Denise O'Berry frequently speaks to professional organizations, is the author of three booklets, and several "how-to" manuals. She writes a weekly small business column, hosts an online small business owners forum and is called upon regularly by publications such as Entrepreneur, Bank Rate Small Business, Florida Trend, Inc., various newspapers, radio and television to provide expert comments on small business issues.
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