I really hate playing “hunt down the smell.”
You know… the game that starts with your wife walking into a room, wrinkling up her nose, and saying, “What is that smell??”
It took us a whole afternoon to figure out where the smell in our daughter’s bedroom was coming from.
For the last five years, I’ve been paying for a termite company to come out and spray for termites. They use this organic orange oil material so I don’t have to tent the whole house, and they charge me about $600 every year.
That’s the area of the house that was treated the most, and there’s direct sunlight on that wall almost all day… so when my daughter’s room started smelling, we eventually came to the conclusion that the oil must have gone bad.
I had a contractor come out and open the wall… it was just drenched in this oil and it smelled like crap.
So, I did what anyone would do, I called the company and asked if they could send someone out to test it – I wanted to make sure everything was ok and that the material they’d used wasn’t toxic.
The answer I got was shocking.
“Sir, I’m really sorry, but your contract has been expired for two months and in order for us to come out, you’ll need to pay the $600 fee.”
I couldn’t believe it! My daughter might be at risk due to their work, and this was their response?
“Ma’am, I’ve been paying for this service for five years, the reason I stopped payment was because I wasn’t sure if this stuff was toxic, and wondered if it had been used correctly. Can you please just send somebody out to check it for me?”
In order to get this resolved, she had to talk with her supervisor… and then with that person’s supervisor… and then again with that person’s supervisor.
It pissed me off.
Not just because of the potential harm to my daughter, but because I truly believe that if someone is paying you – regardless of whether the transaction has been completed – you should always give great customer service.
That single factor can be the difference between an upset customer writing your business off for good (and then trash talking you on Yelp) and a complete turnaround that creates a bond with that customer and makes them a customer for life.
So let’s see how things could have gone differently…
Imagine if I’d called up with the same problem and heard, “I completely understand your concerns – that must be so worrying for you and your family. We’ll send someone out today to run some tests to make sure nothing went wrong in the treatment process.”
Totally different scenario, right?
When you show your gratitude to your customers by respecting them and trying to find solutions to their concerns, it always comes back to you.
Every single time.
So what’s the worst customer scenario your shop has faced and how did you turn it around to create a customer for life? Hit reply and tell me about it!
Let’s make it right,