A customer calls and leaves a message. There is an issue with what you sold them and they are definitely NOT happy.
What do you do?
- Do you ignore the call and hope the situation solves itself?
- Do wait a few hours for them to cool off before you return the call?
- Do you pick up the phone and call the customer immediately?
“In times of trouble, there are those who run away from the fire, and there are those run toward the fire to put it out.” – Richard Elmes
If you work in any customer service or sales role, the best answer would be number 3.
It is when your customer has an issue, that they need you the most.
- If you run away, the customer will come to the realization that you only care about your commissions from the sale and not the “solution” you sold them on. When you deal with the issue head on, you are communicating that you are there to help. You care about their success. And you want to make things better.
- Delaying making contact tells the customer that they are not your priority. And all customers want to feel like a priority.
If you are tied up in a meeting or with another customer, sending a quick email or text message acknowledging that you received their message and that you will get back to them later (and state the time) will signal to your angry customer that help is on its way. This will help calm them down a bit. But this feeling only lasts a short time, and disappears completely if you fail to call them at the time you stated.
- When you run into the fire, by getting back to them quickly, that response time tells your customers that you care. This is the first step in handling Customer 911 calls. Yes, they may yell, scream or jump up and down, but they will still appreciate your efforts, when you prove to them that you will support your solution, and put out the fire and ultimately removing their stress.
Remember, when a customer calls us to complain about an issue, they are giving us a gift.
They are giving us the gift of fixing the issue.
They are giving us the gift of a second chance to make things right (And possibly earn the next sale).
“Opportunity dances with those who are already on the dance floor.” – H. Jackson Brown Jr.
Here is another example of the Sales Dating Mindset in this blog post by Saumil Mehta
If you’ve ever worked in an enterprise software company at the same time as being single, maybe you’ve noticed the similarities between dating and software sales. Here’s how:
- Putting on a match.com profile is like going to a trade show.
- Always out and about on the prowl? It’s called lead generation, folks.
- Meeting different girls? Going on many first dates? How about calling it what it is: a sales pipeline?
- Going on ten dates without a goodnight kiss – poor ROI.
- Getting fixed up by a friend? Well, that sounds a lot like inside sales supporting corporate sales, doesn’t it?
- Getting screwed out of a makeout session by the girl’s annoying prissy little twit of a roommate? We like to call it bureaucratic wrangling and internal politics.
- And finally, the single man’s dating mantra, which aligns so well with the sales cliche: “Always be closing (ABC)”. Need I say more?
Depressing? Natch. Disgusting in its objectification of relationships? Of course. But funny trumps all, folks.
Here is his blog: http://bitbubble.wordpress.com/2007/06/03/why-dating-is-like-software-sales/
“One loss is good for the soul. Too many losses is not good for the coach.” – Knute Rockne, Notre Dame Football Legend
“We place value on things in the same proportion as it took to acquire it.” – Richard Elmes, The Sales Dating Guy http://www.SalesDatingGuy.com
The following networking ideas come from my friend and fellow professional speaker, Judy Suke. (Judy is not only funny, but she is an excellent networker)
7 STEPS FOR HIGHLY EFFECTIVE NETWORKING
1. Have a polished infomercial and know exactly who you want to target. (Talk to SUCCESSFUL people in your business and ask who the IDEAL CLIENT IS … do some research … put some time in)
2. Learn how to small talk and show genuine interest in people. DON’T BE LOOKING OFF IN THE DISTANCE to see who ELSE is there. Look them in the eye and FOCUS ON THEM DON’T PREJUDGE ANYONE …. Sports equipment … CATERER YOU SHOULD BE ACTING LIKE A HOST – NOT A GUEST
3. Never try to sell to the people at a networking event. Build relationships. – networking events are not for showing product. TIME IS PRECIOUS and people WANT TO and NEED to CIRCULATE. 10 minutes or less 60 seconds to describe product or service
4. Go with a GOAL of the number of IDEAL people you want to connect with.
5. Follow-up with good leads within 48 hours. Let the person who gave you the lead know that you followed up. THANK THEM.
6. Decide how much time per month you want to spend networking.
7. Track success patterns and establish a system to sustain your business.
“Better to light a candle than to curse the darkness.” – Chinese Proverb