Customers are the reason you have a business, and most important, they are the reason your business is successful. You somehow connect to them, you give them something unique and that makes them feel good about themselves. This also makes them love you or better yet, your brand.
But like in any relationship, at some point crap will hit the fan. Have you ever gotten home after a long day at work just to realize your internet, TV and phone do not work? WTF?!? This is your relax time, why? WHY? WHY?
Oh well, to make things worse, you call your provider, just to hear them say:
- We are sorry to hear about your issue Sir. We are looking into it.
- Oh, it seems like you will need to reset your modem! Could you please unplug your modem from the power source?
Well – you do it – there is nothing worse anyway.
In cases like this and many others you feel like they are hiding something. There is no transparency or honesty whatsoever. But you are too tired to care for such small thing and move on.
Coming clean when facing your customers will take you down the long lasting relationship road. Simply because the customer does not feel cheated or tricked. Just like in a real relationship or marriage, if you do have a great relationship built in honesty and trust no matter how difficult or challenging your problems are you will end up with someone that could potentially even help fixing your issues earlier.
Here are some ideas of what you should avoid
- Never tell your customer – I told you so, your warranty expired on the day I said it would
- Don’t care about old customers, no loyalty program or even help them when you release a new price with better options for new customer signing up
- Have multiple price lists for the same product/ service and when confronted put the blame on the other side and not help
- Assume or treat your customer like an idiot
- Expect the worse from your customer and just pretend you are there for the long term relationship
- Use small caps or lower case fonts in contracts for the most important parts and don’t even mention them
- Sell customer data to other marketing companies… not good!!!
- Charge for options on your top of the line products and offer same things in small bundles for basic products
- Avoid picking up calls or answering emails when called upon issues and do not offer solutions or help
- Talk about customers like they were your worst enemies
When you make your customer feel stupid, treat them like crap or simply ignore them, you’ve given him no other choice. He will curse at you, blame you and use WOM to destroy you.
But if you give them a chance, be honest and transparent, it will make them feel special in some way. And they will not mind spending that extra amount on your products, because they feel like they are getting what they expected.