08 Jan Using Poor Customer Service as a Marketing Strategy?
It takes 20 years to build a reputation and 5 minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you will do things differently. – Warren Buffet
I was recently reading an article on how large corporations actually use Poor Customer Service (link below) as a tactic to deliberately employ inefficient, multistep processes hoping that you will give up so they can avoid giving you a replacement or refund for the product or service.
Imagine if us as small business owners employed the same principals, we’d be out of business in a few weeks!
There are some major takeaways from this article and the studies referenced that you can implement into your health practice that will not only increase your retention rate but make you money and increase your value to your prospects and patients.
Did you know that it is up to 10x more expensive to obtain a new patient than to retain an existing one?
It is a common belief that one of the main reasons a patient stops using a service is they had a bad experience.
The reality is, it is not the bad experience, but rather how the experience was handled that ultimately leads to the patient going elsewhere and the practice losing out not only on the patient but also the referrals the client could bring, testimonials, etc.
In the study, nearly eight in 10 consumers who complained about a problem in the past year still weren’t happy with the way it was handled.
This is a huge opportunity for us because if we can implement a way to eliminate frustrations, worry and doubt for our prospects and patients then we will stand out even more from the competition and build a more valuable relationship.
One crucial element that I’ve incorporated into my businesses to provide a focus on maximizing the client experience when there are problems is a proven system for handling a complaint.
Since implementing this system and training my staff on it, it has saved us $10 000s+ in potential loss and in one instance completely turned a negative into a positive where the client ended up happy and brought a coworker in as a referral (they still are clients).
I discovered this system during a mastermind event in which the keynote speaker was a businessman named Ari Wiezweng owner of Zingermans.
Ari is the owner of a massive restaurant/food industry business with over $70 million in annual sales through 13 different businesses.
The restaurant industry is one of the largest for customers leaving reviews, sharing experiences and voicing complaints. I know myself before I go somewhere to eat I always check the review, often I see complaints related to poor service, wait times things that may have been able to be fixed.
The big focus during Ari’s presentation was about fully optimizing the customer service experience while maximizing staff enrichment and meaning in their jobs.
(If you get a chance to go to his presentations, I highly recommend to do so)
One tool he uses is the 5 Steps to Overcoming Customer Complaints – This is pure gold.
5 steps to Effectively Handling a Customer Complaint
1. Acknowledge the complaint
2. Sincerely apologize
3. Take action to make things right
4. Thank the guest
5. Document the complaint
You can download our template HERE
So while big corporations are focusing on using Poor Customer Service & Computer Automations to save money and ignore the inevitable problems, it only helps us small business owners capitalize on creating more value, deeper relationships and a truly exceptional experience for our prospects and clients.
You can find out more about Ari and Zingermans Here