Regaining a customer’s trust and rebuilding brand authenticity after you’ve messed up can be a challenging endeavor. It’s always easier for bad news to spread like bushfire all over social media and hurt your brand reputation and business at large.
You see; most customers tend to run to online forums and social media platforms to write bad reviews when they’re dissatisfied by any product or service. And, it only takes one negative line in online reviews to scare prospective clients away and bring the whole business to a halt.
While it’s advisable to treat customers with the respect they deserve by delivering on your promise, it’s also imperative to acknowledge the fact that humans run businesses, and they will make mistakes at some point. Even giant corporations occasionally come across a misstep, which could end up affecting their customer loyalty and confidence.
When a mistake occurs – whether real or perceived – the management must quickly take the best course of action and respond thoughtfully to aggrieved customers in the quest to restore faith and protect the brand’s reputation. Remember, everyone makes mistakes – but it’s the crisis management that could be the difference between losing business and getting a customer for life. As Richard Branson says, always view complaints as a chance to improve your services and make a friend in the process. The following are 5 solutions on how to rebuild a customer’s trust simply and consistently.
1. Own the Mistake
Taking responsibility is the first step to rebuilding a customer’s trust after the crisis has transpired. Getting defensive and pushing the blame off to someone else usually drives customers nutty and will completely discredit you.
Regardless of whose fault it was, be accountable for it and take a leaf off of the humility handbook. Trying to excuse yourself out of any failure will paint a bad image for your business as it will send a message that the customer is to blame. And you know what they say about the customer being right and all that.
Also, honesty is the best policy when it comes to handling a public relations crisis. Being honest is one of the key procedures for resolving customer complaints.
Rather than holding the customer culpable for going against your recommendations (that’s if you did recommend a specific product), accept the liability because you went ahead and sold them that product or service anyway. Apologize honestly and ease the customer’s frustration, and then take full responsibility and offer a feasible solution for the problem at hand.
2. Transform with Listening
Listening to customer’s grievances and soliciting their suggestions can be an excellent avenue for restoring dented relationships. When things go wrong, many salespeople err by letting others do the talking on their behalf.
After you’ve accepted the blame and offered empathy, there’s no point letting anyone else engage the customers on your behalf. Wow your customers more by giving them great listening.
By allowing your customers to speak, you’ll discover their expectations and how to satisfy them going forward. Remember, your client probably has plenty of ideas you can implement in your business as a remedy.
Your customer will give you specific ideas on what you can do to make things whole again. So, always try to empower your consumer and make them part of the team seeking the solution, not an adversary.
3. Ask Questions
It’s vital to execute a questioning strategy to understand the full extent of the damage caused. You should delve into your customer’s reactions first before making known the plans you have in place to rectify things.
Make sure to ask relevant and targeted questions. Never feel reluctant to ask as many questions as possible about the misstep. As long as the customer seems willing to engage of course. Some salespeople tend to assume they already know the answer and fail to hear the accurate responses from the clients, which is an incredibly wrong move.
Plenty of open-ended questions coupled with practical listening skills will go a long way in righting wrongs and rebuilding fractured trust. To put your customer at ease and make them feel like they’re heard, make use of a softener, such as “I’m curious to know…” at the beginning of every question.
Probing and actively listening will give you a greater understanding as well as a complete picture of the customer’s perspective. Only then can you craft a profound plan that meets the client’s needs and solves the problems hindering the progress of your business.
4. Fix the Problem & Avoid Recurrence
In order to restore buyer confidence and loyalty in your brand, you must develop a viable solution to the issues at hand. There’s a need to make adjustments based on what you’ve learned from your customers. As well as your understanding of what would be best for them going forward.
You can fix any wrongs and rebuild trust by upgrading or adding more perks to your product or service as a part of your admission of guilt. If, for example, you sold a customer an expired product or the coupon deadlines are past, hold up to your end of the deal by issuing a new, similar offer.
Likewise, make a follow-up with every detail by communicating throughout the organization to stop the recurrence of the same mistakes. A customer can quickly notice a crack in your organization’s effectiveness, and they can end up losing confidence in your business. As such, sealing those cracks is a sure-fire way to re-secure the trust.
In this fast-paced business world, no business can survive without customer loyalty. Responding to your customers with honesty and empathy can help you win their loyalty and rebuild trust.
5. Bid them Adieu, If You Have To
Sometimes it takes courage to face hard-hitting challenges with clients. Not everyone has what it takes to rebuild a dented trust and win a client back. If, for some reasons, you’ve got to end the relationship, go ahead and do it.
Many reasons may trigger you to wish a client away. Of course, we all need clients because they’re the pillars of any business. But if all the products or services you have aren’t their perfect match, you’ll have no other choice but to wish them away.
If you have to end the relationship, do it graciously as you leverage on the best possible terms. Wishing them away with politeness prevents the likelihood of them leaving scathing reviews that could harm your brand’s reputation.
If possible, apologize by getting them a refund along with a handwritten card expressing gratitude for their business. A reasonable client will understand your standpoint and appreciate your effort.
Trust is considered one of the most fragile things in the world. It’s difficult to win, simple to lose, and even more challenging to rebuild. You must be consistently committed to your customers and their issues to earn full loyalty.
Regardless of the issue, you’ll need the customer to frequent your premises over and over again. For this reason, you have to rebuild trust with supreme integrity. Typically by taking ownership of the problem, empathizing with your customers, and delivering whatever you promise. In the end, your constant effort will make you a service hero to your patrons, and an expert in crisis management. Do you have the required tools to reach out to your customers even after concluding a sale? If you’re scheduling your meetings and sending emails to your salesforce contacts. make sure you also install Veloxy Mobile and Veloxy Engage. These will allow you to get to all your customers, ask for feedback, compliments and complaints as well as schedule meetings for post-sales analysis. Remember, always view complaints as an opportunity to improve your services.