We have all heard the phrase “The Customer is Always Right” or “Customer is King” but do these apply to blogs or on social media, where you are online.
I would say that your role on your blog site or social media should be to allow comments and you to be respectful. How do you deal with Customer Service Rules Etiquette?
The three factors which customers can complain on are Price, Customer Service or the Product.
A recent Gallup study reveals that when it comes to memorable service people tell their friends about, or it can go viral and it’s more important that the service provided feels “thorough” and friendly, rather than quick.
Most of the time the web is a really positive place, however, despite all the good, it’s often the bad/negative that stands out and sticks with us.
You may be tempted to respond immediately, but if you do, you may regret it.
There is a huge cost to your business if you don’t deal with the complaints in a satisfactory manner.
There are nine customer service rules etiquette that I have come up with to help you.
1.Customer Service Rules Etiquette – Always Apologize
In any business dealings, conflict with customers are a part of doing business.
As the owner of a blog or social media account, you are ultimately responsible for handling conflicts that arise. When a conflict arises, you need to be the first person that apologizes.
Even in cases, where you weren’t at fault. It may initially appear that you have made a mistake due to how the customer is framing the issues back to you.
If in time, it appears that the customer was wrong, then you don’t point that out. You make the focus working on keeping the relationship with the reader.
In the online world, if a customer is requesting a refund for a product that you have created and sold to them, it is best to honour that-within reason.
It is very easy for customers to go online and say things about you if they feel that they have been wronged.
If the refund issue has to deal with a product sold directly by the network marketing company, then they will have to resolve that with the company. You are not responsible for the refund policy of the network marketing company.
But, remember, the relationship is paramount. You won’t win all of the disagreements.
But, by approaching each situation with the end in mind, you will save many of the relationships. That is always the goal.
2.Have Empathy with the Customer
You gain a new customer and keep your current customers by providing unbeatable value for the price that the customer pays for your service. Your price may not be the cheapest.
But, the customer feels that they can trust you with their issues.
Also, the customer believes that you understand their needs. In this case, if you are seeking to build a network marketing business, then you understand the hopes and fears of a new network marketer.
They are just starting out and need to not only recruit, but most importantly, sell product.
You need to show empathy to your readers.
So understand why the customer is choosing your product or service. Don’t ever try to force. Empathize with the customer and you will gain their trust and most importantly, their business.
When you read a highly negative comment about your business (or about yourself), you not only feel angry but experience a very real physical reaction.
“As you become angry your body’s muscles tense up. Inside your brain, neurotransmitter chemicals known as catecholamines are released causing you to experience a burst of energy lasting up to several minutes. This burst of energy is behind the common angry desire to take immediate protective action. At the same time your heart rate accelerates, your blood pressure rises, and your rate of breathing increases. You’re now ready to fight.”
Accelerated heart rate. Increased blood pressure. Rapid breathing. These are not the ideal conditions for a speedy, empathetic response to customer complaints.
But you have to find a way to keep your cool in the face of complaints, or find the people in your business who can do so.
The biggest advice I can offer here is not to give our pre-scripted responses back to each of your negative comments, go the extra mile and reply back to each and everyone with a different reply.
Even a short “I am sorry” can go a long way.
Regardless of who the hater is, however, I recommend responding publicly. Even if they rant and rave and call you names, you’ll answer coolly and publicly. It probably won’t change the behaviour or attitude of that one person, as it’s almost impossible to turn a crazy lemon into lemonade; the fruit is already rotten as they say.
3.Be Solution Oriented
In any business, there will always be obstacles. If you are seeking to grow a network marketing business, you have to overcome peoples negative mind-sets about the industry. You also have to help new marketers deal with their own fears about the business.
Remember, with network marketing, this is not a convincing business. You are looking to find people who want to make changes in their life.
Either they have money but no time. Or, they need money and network marketing is the only business out there that a person with limited means can use to change their finances.
So, focus on the solution of your prospect and show them how this business can help them.
Internet businesses are no different to getting complaints.
Be consistent, fair and in time, you will see the results you desire.
And, with network marketing, you will develop that residual income stream that you cannot do in small brick and mortar business.
Believe me on this one. This is why I am a network marketer.
4.Always Offer Support
The main reason for customers to be dissatisfied is when they receive poor customer service. Do everything in your power to provide excellent service to your customers on an ongoing basis.
Respond quickly and enthusiastically, and be ready to present a special offer or discount with the hope of up-selling the customer to buy more.
5.Be Honest When It Comes To Mistakes
Being transparent in the digital age is a must. Much like the principles discussed above, transparency is a critical factor in building trust, satisfaction, and love from your customers.
If they have highlighted an error on your site then recognise this.
6.How Many Times Do You Reply Back? Twice!!
I get this question a lot. Even if the hater replies back to you on social media with even more negativity, as a rule of thumb, I suggest that you only respond twice and then leave it.
If you do not apply this method then this can spiral out of control and go into a full blown conversation and this is not good for your public relationship with your followers or audience.
Here is an example:
Gill: “ You are the worst. I can not believe I am reading this garbage. Your site was not useful at all to me and I will not be coming back to you site again!!”
My reply: “ I am sorry that we have fallen short of your expectations. We always strive to deliver the best content to our readers. If there is anything more that I can assist you on then please let me know.”
Gill: “You are an idiot. Your site is not useful at all and can not understand why you are blogging.”
My Reply “ Again, I am sorry you are unhappy and would like to help you where I can.”
Gill: “ I am not wasting any more time with you and your site and I hate you.”
Look at these top 10 tips when dealing with angry or rude customers, that may help you.
The above is quite extreme but these things do happen with social media or on your site and you need to know how to deal with it. I would not reply back in the back example as I have replied back twice.
I hope this helps.
7.Different Ways to Apologise to Customers
According to psychology professor, Michael McCullough, “People often think that evolution designed people to be mean, violent, and selfish, but humans need relationship partners, so natural selection probably also gave us tools to help us restore important relationships after they have been damaged by conflict.” Apologizing is one of those relationship-restoring tools.
A study that McCullough lead at the University of Miami reveals that “peace making efforts such as apologies, offers of compensation and owning up to one’s responsibility increase forgiveness—and reduce anger—by making the aggressor seem more valuable as a relationship partner and by causing the victim to feel less at risk of getting hurt again by the transgressor.” This relates to customer service in four ways:
1.Apologizing preserves relationships with customers and lowers customer churn rate.
The Harvard Business Review says that “acquiring a new customer is anywhere from five to 25 times more expensive than retaining an existing one.”
A well-crafted apology coupled with a thoughtful solution can help you keep your current audience in business with you, despite whatever obstacles may have come up.
2.Apologizing to customers augments their satisfaction.
If a customer walks out of a situation without feeling like your company has not done their best to make amends, they may leave unsatisfied, and with unresolved anger towards the situation.
By apologizing you can help diffuse and resolve a customer’s anger, and ultimately leave them feeling satisfied instead of upset.
3.Apologizing leads to better reviews/customer feedback scores.
A sincere, potent apology can help an upset, one-star-review customer arrive at a satisfying resolution, and give your blog or social profile a five-star review and/or positive feedback.
4.By apologizing to customers, you can generate more leads over time.
Customers who feel like their issue was resolved compassionately, professionally, and effectively are more likely to refer their social circle (or even strangers on the internet) to your blog or social account. A well-crafted apology can help with that.
8.Don’t Let Your Emotions Get The Better Of You
No matter how angry a comment may make you, remember to keep your words professional as they would reflect your brand.
Thank the customer for bringing the issue to your attention and provide a speedy resolution.
Customer service in your business if its online is key.
If you are too upset to respond objectively, then have someone else read your drafted reply, ensure that it is at least professional, and then respond.
Never, ever, respond whenever your emotions are getting the best of you.
9.The Dos And Don’ts On Negative Comments On School Social Media
Do stay on top of it. Social media is very public and pretty much a 24/7 phenomenon. Diligence is required. Check your accounts at least daily if not more frequently. Weekends too.
Do acknowledge all comments.
When a negative comment does rear its ugly head, confirm with whoever posted it that you received it. Be direct.
Try to soften it.
Handle inappropriate comments offline.
- Do nip it at the bud. Put your communications skills to the test by responding quickly with a concise, well-thought-out comment that reflects positively on the issue at hand.
- Do try to see their side.
- Do put yourself in the commentator’s place and make sure your response is the kind you’d like to get if you were in their shoes.
- Don’t ignore.
- Don’t ignore comments as what’s worse than negative comments is neglecting.
- Don’t be defensive.
- Do not take a defensive posture when responding to a negative comment.
- Don’t escalate.
- Don’t protract the negativity in an online argument for the world to see.
- Don’t get in to a battle as people who take the time to comment negatively on social media can sometimes be looking for a fight.
- Don’t patronize. It’s easy to see through comments that look down on someone or are in the least bit condescending.
Have a look at these top 10 tips to help you further.
It often takes a lot more energy to take the professional road than responding with what you really want to say, but just be careful that something you write doesn’t come back to haunt you later.
The thing about the web is just about everything is public.
You can do your own research and look to the comments section of your favorite bloggers and see how they handle the comments.
Just remember, you need reviews.
Some respond and continue the conversation, some allow the comments and ignore then, and others delete them.
A lot of it comes down to personal preference.
I hope that you found this post on Customer Service Rules Etiquette for Blogs and Social Media useful.