September 20th, 2017

Unhappy customers are part of life, aren’t they?

The trick is to know how to deal with them, without losing the listing. Because you could say what you’re thinking, but we know that’s likely to lose the sale.

What you need is a strategy. A strategy that’s likely to win the customer over without selling your soul.

Sound impossible? It’s not.

There’s one little thing you need to do to achieve this. You need to get inside the head of your customer and see things from their point of view.

Doing this is crucial to placating them and retaining them as a client. So how do you do that?

There are four simple steps to help you turn unhappy customers to raving fans.

Step 1: Listen

Sometimes it’s challenging when your clients are not on the same page as you.

Maybe you’ve given them the perfect photos, and they don’t like them. Perhaps you’ve given them a geometrically correct floor plan, and they tell you it looks wrong.

Don’t bite your lip and tell them you’ll get things changed if you know they’re wrong. Because the customer is NOT always right.

Instead, listen and consider their perspective. Ask open questions like, “Why do you say that?”

You don’t have to agree with them, but paraphrasing their thoughts will help them feel heard. Try saying things like, “So you think the walls look too yellow in the photographs?”

Let your client express their opinions and show that you are listening by engaging and taking notes.

Step 2: Empathize

The next step is ‘empathy’. The ability to ‘get inside the heads’ of other people is what elevates some realtors above their competition and ultimately makes them a better salesperson.

Empathy is an awareness of the feelings and emotions of other people. And let’s not forget – a property sale is an emotional time.

Clients are often worried, anxious, excited or upset.

Try to establish what they’re feeling, and check that with them. Say things like, “So, you’re anxious we won’t achieve the sale price you’re after?” or “It sounds like you’re concerned the property won’t sell as quickly as you’d like”.

Remember, you’re not telling the client how they’re feeling, you’re asking if you’ve identified their concerns. Once you find the underlying cause of their thoughts and emotions, you can start to move on.

Step 3: Present Options

Give your client options to address the problem by saying things like, “If you’re concerned about that image, what about we use this one as the feature image?”

Take a collaborative approach to problem-solving, rather than just agreeing with your client. (Click to Tweet)  This helps position you as the authority in your field, whilst still allowing them to have input.

Provide them with evidence that your solution is likely to lead to the best outcomes for them. You’ll need to prepare for this by listing the key objections you encounter and keeping evidence of your claims (articles or data) available.

If the client is still unhappy, ask them for their ideal solution to the problem. Perhaps they just need you to do something ‘their way’.

Step 4: Follow-up

Always make good on your promises: follow up on the action and let your client know.

It’s also a good idea to follow up again with the client a few days later to make sure they are happy with the resolution.

Learn from the misunderstanding – were there miscommunications along the way that could be avoided next time? All of this is a learning process.

One thing that’s key to reducing complaints is not to work alone. Do what you do best and outsource the rest to professionals. (Click to Tweet)

Cheapest isn’t best – you usually get what you pay for, so look for experienced people who know what they’re doing. Like the photographers from Pixilink who provide high-quality images as well as extras like floor plans, virtual tours and feature sheets.