Customer Experience News & Trends

A customer is angry: Who’s he telling?

You screwed up. But you don’t know it, and a customer is angry about the issue. So is he taking the issue to you to fix or the streets for revenge?

More often than not, an upset customer is going to complain about an issue to his social media network, family members, colleagues and the bartender at his neighborhood pub.

About 80% of customers complain to the company responsible for their issue, according to the recent National Customer Rage Study. But nearly 90% say they share their stories with friends and colleagues — who can’t do anything about the issue

How you can make a difference

Why are customers more likely to go to their social network than the actual company or organization responsible for the issue?

These three factors likely have a major influence on customers’ decisions to tell the wrong people:

  • “My friends and family listen to me.” Even when people are complaining, family and friends do tend to be empathetic and offer time to listen. That’s why employees must give customers who bring issues to your company an open ear and mind. Let customers vent, then treat each issue as if it’s the first time you’ve heard it (even if it’s the thousandth time).
  • “I have more options.” The business world does leave customers more options other than you when it comes to where to purchase the goods and services they want. So rather than explore more options with your organization after an issue, they just look for another supplier. That’s why it’s smart to look for customers who’ve slowed or stopped buying, reach out to them to find out if there’s an issue, and then offer to solve, replace or find a better fit.
  • No one cares anyway.” Many customers leave and complain to those they know because no one at the company ever treated them as valuable customers. That can only be addressed in customer service training, by helping all employees know how to serve customers with concern and care.

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