Recovering the Lost Customer

Recovering the Lost Customer
Why try to recover a potentially
lost customer?
Studies show that recovered
customers will give a
company more business
than new customers
If you win the customer back
they have a second life with your
organization, this is a new start
that you can build on as a
◦ The recovered customer is already
familiar with your business
◦ You are likely to have more data
about the customers likes and
dislikes so you can appeal to the
customer’s needs
◦ The customer may feel flattered
that you have tried to win them
back, so they will become even
more loyal as a customer or use
more company services
How to recover a lost customer
Feel the customer’s pain—do all
that you can do to quickly resolve
the problem
 Recognize that customers are more
than likely angry or frustrated and they
would like you to do any of the
◦ Listen to them and take them seriously
◦ Understand their problem and why they
are upset
◦ Share their sense of urgency
◦ Compensate them or provide them with
◦ Eliminate further inconvenience
◦ Treat them with respect and empathy
◦ Assure them that this will not happen to
them or others again
You may not be able to do all of the
above but typically the upset customer
requires one or several of the above
Symbolic Atonement
Offer the customer Symbolic Atonement
◦ SYMBOLIC ATONEMENT means giving the customer
something to make up for the problem they have had
It may not compensate for the damage done but
symbolically it indicates that the company is trying to
appease the customer and win them back
 What are some ways you would be able to appease a
healthcare customer..what could you give them to
right a wrong done?
◦ Parking fees
◦ Sincerely apology
◦ Give the gift of a free service, free merchandise if
merchandise is available at the healthcare facility
Different Types of complaining
There are Five (5) types of complaining customers. Each is motivated
by different needs, attitudes and beliefs
 The meek customer
◦ Generally will not complain
The aggressive customer
◦ Complains loudly and at length
The high-roller customer
◦ Expects the best and is willing to pay for it.
◦ Complains in a reasonable manner, unless they are like the aggressive customer
The rip-off customer
◦ Goal—not to get the complaint satisfied, but rather to win by getting something
the customer is Not entitled to receive. Constant and repetitive ‘not good
enough’ response to efforts to satisfy this customer is an indicator of a rip-off
The chronic complainer
◦ Is never satisfied, there is always something wrong
◦ The customers mission is to whine, Yet they are a customer and cannot be
Use Receiver Centered Messages to
respond to the customer
A receiver centered
message is a message that
is phrased in terms of the
other person’s viewpoint.
◦ Being receiver centered
conscious you would –make sure
that the tone of the conversation,
letter, or email, reflects a sincere
interest in the other person, the
message would cater to the
other person’s wants and needs
When you use receiver
centered messages you convey
an interest in the other person
this interest will hopefully
translate in the customers
mind into caring and concern
from the company
Use Positive Language-Don’t be
conveyed by positive language
Positive language conveys more information than negative
language—employees should focus on the positive, what is or what
they can do
Positive language has a pleasant ring to the ear
Abrasiveness definition—an irritating manner or tone that
sounds pushy or critical
◦ Abrasive individuals express their opinions in a somewhat threatening
◦ If you are abrasive when dealing with customers, soften the tone of
your communications
◦ There is a difference between being abrasive and assertive
Assertive behavior means—you express your opinions and
feelings in a non-threatening way
◦ People do not usually get offended by an assertive individual
Using the Hostility Curve to resolve
hostile situations
Consider the following steps that will guide you through
the Hostility Curve (page 146 in your textbook)
Most people are usually reasonable. They function at a rational level.
At this level, you can reason with them about things.
When irritations pile up about a specific incident that rational
person may become irrational, possibly becoming abusive, and
expressing a lot of hostility. Once the person leaves their rational
level there is no sense in trying to get the person to be reasonable.
This stage of being unreasonable cannot last forever. Eventually the
unreasonable person runs out of steam. They may feel embarrassed
for making a scene.
At this stage you can be supportive, let the other person know that
you understand their feelings. You may say something such as, ‘I
know this has been an upsetting experience for you’
Your supportive comments will help the hostile person cool off or
at least come down to a rational level.
Once the person has come down to a rational level you can start to
try to problem solve and work out the situation, maybe first trying
to find out what caused the anger.
How you can learn from difficult
situations with customers?
To positively learn from a
situation with a customer, ask
yourself the following
What was the nature of the
complaint? Was it generated
by value, system or people
How did the customer see the
problem? What was to blame?
What irritated the customer
most? Why were they
How did I see the problem?
What did you sat that seemed
to aggravate the situation?
What to do if the customer is still
not satisfied?
Professionalism requires us
to do everything possible
not to let our frustrations
out on customers
◦ If you have tried your best to
satisfy the customer, then you
have done all that you can do
◦ Don’t rehash the experience
with your coworkers or in
your own mind. If it is over
it is over. Rehashing the
situation will not change it.