Are you trying to win new clients or trying to keep the ones you already have? Then you should take note of the way you communicate.
You’ve probably heard of the term, ‘customers are always right’. We know they aren’t right all the time, and dealing with them can be really challenging, but you have to learn how to speak with them even when they are wrong. This would help you keep the clients you already have and even win more.
Here are top 5 things you should never say to your clients:
1. “Your current supplier or vendor is terrible…”
Even if whoever they did business with was used to doing a bad job, never ever badmouth the competition no matter what you know or think about that firm because you won’t come off well.
Rather than cutting down others, highlight the positives and unique skills, assets or expertise that you and your company represent. Don’t allow your client to leave you feeling terrible.
2. “This is what you should go for…”
Always give clients what they want. No matter what they say, people generally think what they want is right. Saying that they’re wrong may only offend them and make them want to take their business to someone else who will give them what they seek.
You can always propose an additional option to consider, but present it with a light touch. Ultimately, it’s the clients’ choice and you can live with the outcome if they can.
3. “That’s not possible…”
If a client is asking for something that you’re not sure you can do, you should always try to under-promise and over deliver. Avoid definitive phrases like ‘I can’t do that.’ or ‘that’s not possible.’
That client is hiring you because they don’t have the skills or the time to do the work themselves. So, use softer language, in order for them to know you’re on their side and offer them tangible alternatives to their far-fetched suggestions. It can be difficult, especially with demanding clients but no one likes to feel stupid.
4. “That’s our policy…”
This is as good as telling the clients that nothing can be done, and it would further escalate the client’s problems. If company policy stands in the way of handling a service problem, look for a workaround.
Customers are forgiving if they feel that you’re trying. And a well-handled complaint actually builds loyalty. But throwing up your hands and saying “That’s our policy” shuts down discussion. It essentially tells the customer that you’re finished and that there is no amenable solution. With this, they leave and move on to talk to others offering that service as you.
5. “I’ll get back to you as soon as I can…”
Maybe you will, but in the meantime the customer is left wondering what “soon” means. Always specify a time. If, when that time comes, you still don’t have all the information you need, contact the customer and say so — and say when you’ll follow up again.
Customer relationships are based on managing expectations; “as soon as I can” sounds good but fails to set an expectation the customer can count on.
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