Radio is not the sort of business you think of as falling into a product or service category necessarily and you wouldn’t think we would have irate customers – Radio is supposed to be FUN.

However, we do hear from angry fans from time to time. This only happens because radio is a relationship media. We go to great lengths to cultivate relationships with our listeners and they respond by adopting our broadcast signal as “their station” or “their music” – They make a personal connection and this is exactly the outcome we are hoping for.

Alternatively, radio is also a business and sometimes we make decisions for the best of the business that doesn’t sit well with a fan or two. The removal of one person’s favorite song (or addition of someone’s least favorite) from the line-up can result in angry phone calls, emails, and Facebook comments.

It is hard not to take these complaints personally but it is important to remember that your customer would not complain if he or she was not personally invested in your products and services.

Furthermore, you have already invested valuable resources acquiring this customer. In an article on Forbes.com, Lee Resource Inc. is quoted as stating that “attracting new customers will cost your company five times more than keeping an existing customer.” If this is true, then it is in the best interest of your bottom line to mend whatever fences might be broken with this unhappy party.

So, how do you turn an unhappy customer back into a loyal customer without letting the situation get under your skin? Here are a couple tips:

In person – Engage!

Listen carefully to what is bothering your patron and offer affirmation that you hear them and you understand but don’t just say it, really do it – put yourself in your customer’s shoes. By imagining yourself in this individual’s situation, you will be better equipped to come to a resolution for him.

While you are engaging, make sure you learn and use the customer’s name. This will create a connection between you and the individual and it sounds so much more personal than sir or mam.

On-line – Type it Out.

You may have been told that “the bigger person” should ignore negative comments but in the on-line arena one negative comment can fuel a whole flurry of “jump-on-the-band-wagon” type comments. Addressing comments shows that you value the opinions of your customers.

The up-side to complaints made online is that you have time to carefully craft your response. However, if your well thought out response doesn’t quell the social media frenzy taking place on your page, Facebook offers the ability to click on a commenter’s profile and then take the conversation out of the public realm by sending a private message.

On the phone – Smile!

Yes, it is true that the customer may not be able to see your face but the change in the muscle groups around your mouth changes the tone in your voice making you sound friendlier. I learned this from one of our production techs a couple years ago while recording a commercial. He recorded the spot from a straight read and then asked me to smile while I read the same script. Try it yourself and you will hear the difference.

Additionally, studies have shown that a smile, even a fake one, can trick your brain into feeling happier and reduce stress levels. This may help you handle the on slot of complaints that are being directed at you.

The marketing experts at Manning Media build more than campaigns; they are specialists at building customer connections. To build relationships that last, call us In Frederick – 301-620-7700 or in Hagerstown – 301-733-4500. You can also fill out our online request form by clicking HERE!

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