Well, you goofed. Big time. The Twitterverse is ablaze with anger, your Facebook feed is filled with seething rage, and the national news has even given the story airtime. Your face is red and soon your profit margins will be, too! Unless you do something.
But is there any coming back from a huge faux pas like the one you’ve committed? Your customers are likely cursing your name and are unlikely to forgive you anytime soon. How do you go about restoring confidence in your company and brand?
For one, it’s best to remember that “anytime soon” mentioned above. Just because they may not be willing to give you a second (or third) chance right now, this may change in the future. So don’t lose your mind trying to bring them back over as soon as possible.
Right now, what you should be focusing on is getting your name back into good standing. This involves buckling down and getting to work figuring out ways to build goodwill. One way to get about this is to take into consideration what went wrong in the first place.
Was your big mistake lying to your customers? Then you need to find ways to show the world that you’re actually honest. Make sure to take the full blame for the lie first of all then go about orchestrating a campaign around “keeping promises.”
Did your product cause harm to some of your customers? Go out of your way to fix the situation, and then find some nonprofits to align yourself with to show you’re concerned with human interests.
When you feel the world has calmed down enough about your big goof (and it may not take long…the world moves fast these days), it’s time to start winning your old customers back. Assuming you’ve done everything in the previous step, your company’s name should be losing its tarnish.
Those old customers will remember when they were wronged, though. This won’t just go away with time. This is especially true if a rival company has already snatched them up. You’ll need something special to win those folks back.
One way to do this, depending on the age of your company, is to instill a feeling of “nostalgia” in those former customers. Remind them all the good things about your business and what you can do for them. Also, tell them what the plan is for your business in the future if they switch over.
The main thing, though, is to let everyone know that your big error will never happen again! Above all else they want to feel like you have their best interests in mind. At all times keep in mind they may be looking for ways you’re messing up again – don’t give them that reason. Mind everything you do and every word you say and you may just be able to win most of your formerly offended customers back into your confidence.
How would you go about restoring your customers’ confidence during a crisis?
This article is written by Mickie Kennedy, founder of eReleases (http://www.ereleases.com), the online leader in affordable press release distribution. Grab three ebooks, including My Facebook Formula, a free report on Facebook and why you should be using the largest social network for your business, here: http://www.ereleases.com/insider/freebooks.html