Today’s post comes courtesy of Christopher Stainow, Chief Executive of management software company Lennox Hill
If your business needs customers to succeed, you need a solid customer complaints management system in place. It may sound simplistic, but in a world where complaints can be made at the click of a mouse on Facebook, Twitter and blogs, no business can afford to risk the consequences of an unhappy customer.
Customers are important – you know this of course, just as you know that keeping the people who make your business success possible is also important. How you deal with your customers makes all the difference between good relationships that inspire repeat business, and sour relationships that result in customers taking their business elsewhere (and then warning off all of their connections too).
But while it is clear that there is a need for systems that deal with customer relations, it would be foolish to assume that having ANY system in place is the same as having the RIGHT system in place.
Customer Complaints Management Done Wrong
Wondering why those complaints never seem to get resolved quickly? Here are some things you may be doing wrong.
- No Report Logs – Even if you are a growing or small company, how are you able to track complaints if you do not have any way of keeping a record of all customer feedback? Even if you have a photographic memory and know exactly who said what over the past month, reporting tools offer the best way to identify trends or even spot potential issues within the company. Without clear records, follow up is also made a lot harder, which means missed opportunities to build relationships further.
- No Complaints Process – What happens when a customer who has had a bad experience at your store goes to their blog, Twitter or Facebook account to complain about that experience? Do you have a process that details who the complaint is forwarded to, at what point it needs to be escalated, and what should be done at that point? If not, there are too many gaps that complaints could fall through – the complaint may not get emailed to the right person at the right time, or it may not be addressed on time.
- No Social Savvy – Even if you do have a proper customer complaints management system in place, how savvy are you on the social front? Customer relations these days are more interactive than ever before. Are you keeping tabs on your company’s social pages? Are you doing online searches to track mentions on blogs and other channels? Have you employed a social media person to assist you in getting the right feedback from customers?
One thing about customer complaints that you may not have considered is that they can actually help your business too. The trick lies in dealing with them quickly, effectively and simply rather than missing out on the chance to turn an unhappy customer into a happy customer. And that is what makes complaints management software such a useful tool – keeping everyone happy and keeping business booming.
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