An organization’s reputation is one of the greatest assets they can have. But, as history has shown, the asset may be elusive to many organizations due to how they handle the complaints brought forward by customers. An organization that promptly and intelligently addresses complaints is more likely to reap the benefits of a good reputation, while those that fall short end up with a ruined reputation.
However, this need not be the case; these tips will show how to keep complaints from ruining your business.
- Do Not Ignore Customer Complaints
Word of mouth is one of the best ways an organization can get new customers and build its reputation. When you ignore existing clients’ complaints, you discourage them from referring to their friends and family to your organization.
In the age of social media and social networking websites, they can do more damage by even talking out existing clientele from your business. Therefore, it is essential to reply to customer’s queries and complaints. You can even go further and search your organization on review sites and respond to complaints filed there.
- Have a Complaints Desk
In the past, all offices had a front office desk with a focal person to address any inquiries, take complaints, and forward them to respective departments to address them accordingly.
In today’s world, an online presence is almost equivalent to a front office desk. Hence, every organization needs to invest in online customer care to respond satisfactorily to queries, complaints, and concerns made by both potential and existing clients.
- Show Interest in the Feedback Given
When people give feedback, they are interested in several things: to be heard or assisted with the query made, product improvement, or even commend a product or service. In all of this, it is vital to acknowledge the feedback. This gives your business credibility in its ability to listen and solve issues that would otherwise ruin a business’s reputation and instead turn them into a public relations asset.
- Apologize to Negative Reviews
Responding kindly to complaints will diffuse the anger and frustration that your client may have due to your company’s mistakes and misdeeds. Accept where you went wrong and offer an apology. This will show your customer that you care about them and thus save your reputation.
- Use Testimonials to Offset Complaints
A sea of good reviews may prevent reputational ruin when negative reviews flow in, especially on open and public platforms. It serves as a reminder that even though things may not be rosy today, that is not the organizations’ culture. This, followed by proactivity in how the organization responds to addressing these issues, will save the organization from reputation ruin.
- Take Action on Customer Complaints
Listening and acknowledging are just not enough; you have to deliver on the complaint. This includes following up on the complaint, pushing it through the bureaucratic chains in an organization, and ensuring that the specificities are addressed. If organizational level changes are needed for this to happen, then the feasibility of such changes need to be discussed. After the redress, follow up on the customer to get their input and any other possible issues that may have emerged during redress and make a point to deal with them in the future.
Feedback and complaints are part of the business environment, and they will always arise at one point or another. How these complaints are addressed determines how clients view the organization. Therefore, managers and business owners must ensure that their staff is trained to respond to complaints efficiently and maintain a good reputation for the business.