How to Make an Unhappy Fan a Happier Customer
When your customers, clients, members, or supporters are upset, it’s one of the best opportunities to show just how committed you are to keeping them happy and to maintaining a relationship with them.
Know what people are saying. You can’t respond if you don’t know what’s being said. Free tools such as NutshellMail and HootSuite can help you stay on top of what people are posting and saying on your Page. Listening online is crucial to hear the good, and the “bad”.
Respond quickly and publicly. If you see a complaint posted on your Facebook Page, don’t ignore it —or worse, delete it. Instead, respond as quickly as possible with a polite message that says “Sorry you’re having a problem,” or “Sorry the experience/meal/product/service wasn’t to your liking,” and a quick offer to help make things better. This shows others you’re listening and that you want to improve the situation.
Be forthcoming with information. We’ve all heard stories of businesses or organizations poor excuses to explain why something went wrong. Most often, your fans just want the truth. Honesty is always the best policy.
Don’t fight fire with fire. Whether or not you agree with the feedback received, don’t get defensive or start a debate with the person — especially if the feedback is irrational or insulting. One of the worst things you can do is broadcast a “he said, she said” debate for all to see. Posts on Facebook last longer than you may realize. Some things are just going to be a personal opinion and you can’t change that. Focus on what you can change: the customer experience.
- Take the conversation offline. If you can, offer to get in touch with your dissatisfied customer offline, either through email, phone, or by asking the customer to come in to your place of business to talk with you in person. Obviously, you don’t want to ask the person to broadcast his or her personal info on Facebook, but it’s better to deal with these kinds of issues outside of social media.
About The Author
Guy is located in the Vancouver Metro area and is a local marketing expert for small business in BC. Guy also speaks at BC Chamber and Small Business BC events. With over 25 years of marketing, sales and business development experience in the small business space, and a deep expertise around Online Marketing and Customer Relationship Management (CRM), he is now British Columbia's Regional Development Director with Constant Contact.
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