John min read | Strategy | Updated December 29, 2020

5 actionable steps to handle any angry customer

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“The customer is always right.” We’ve all heard the phrase, but is it really true? Part of becoming an entrepreneur is dealing with angry customers. And when you get your first angry email or phone call, it’s important for you to have a step-by-step process to handle it with grace and professionalism.

5 Steps to deal with angry customers the right way

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Step #1: Seek to understand before you are understood

  • Most of the time when I have an angry customer, they aren’t angry at ME, but they simply choose you to attack when something else in their life is out of balance
  • Most angry customers are full of emotional language, but short on specifics for why they are angry.
  • Ask clarifying questions until you understand exactly what they are upset about (you’ll likely find it was never you in the first place)

Step #2: Look for evidence

  • Once you understand what’s really behind your angry customer’s words, it’s time to look inwards
  • Is there any truth to the claims? Was there anywhere that you might have misled them with your product, your sales page, or your followthrough?
  • Are other customers getting success and having a good experience?

Step #3: Be fair and balanced

  • Fight the urge to break your own policies and rules just to appease an angry customer.
  • Consider the impact that special favors will have on the rest of your customer base
  • Many times angry customers are simply looking for a special deal or special privileges and are not actually dissatisfied with your product. They just want more.

Step #4: Always be professional

  • Remember what your mother told you, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all”
  • Except in this instance, it is important that you address your customer’s concern. Simply do not sink to their level.
  • Restate their concern, and if there is something that you should do to fix the problem, do it. But if your customer’s concerns are not well-founded, simply remember the bell-curve. You will not physically be able to make everyone happy

Step #5: Remember continuous improvement

  • Do a root-cause analysis on the situation. Where did the miscommunication occur? Should you add content to your sales message to prevent this in the future?
  • Does your product require an update to prevent this in the future?
  • Every angry customer should be considered a defect, and often can be improved for future customers

Conclusion

At the end of the day, you’ll never be able to make 100% of your customer’s happy. Simply maintain the highest levels of integrity, focus, and servant-leader mindset, and continue to move forward!

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00:00:21

And it’s totally, totally awesome if you wanna check it out, go ahead and go to ultimatefunneltoolkit.com and let me know what you think. Alright that’s it. Let’s roll the episode.

00:00:31

Hey, what’s going on everybody, John here from incomemesh.com. Thank you so much for joining in on this live stream. In today’s video, I want to cover something that happened recently to me and give you 5 tips to overcome it when or if it happens to you again, right? And so we’re talking about dealing with angry customers here and whether or not you have a service based business.

Dealing with Angry Customers is a Universal Truth

00:00:52

Whether or not you have a digital product business, whether or not you have a physical product business, you are going to deal with angry customers. And if you’re the solopreneur just getting started.

00:01:02

Everything falls on you right? You don’t have a customer support team to deal with all of that stuff, and even if you do have a customer support team, it’s important for you to also have this in your mind, because problems will always bubble up to the top and these problems are totally fixable and avoidable. An able to not bring you down. Here’s the thing.

00:01:22

When you have an angry customer, it is super duper easy for it to derail you, and I’ll tell you a brief little story here. I won’t give any names or anything like that.

00:01:31

But recently I just wrapped up a six week training program where I took over a dozen entrepreneurs or becoming entrepreneurs, and I took them over the course of a six week period to craft their own offer to create a sales funnel. We were driving traffic, given Facebook ads and we were trying to break even by giving a freebie and offering a tripwire on the back end.

00:01:52

Of that sale.

00:01:53

We’re building our list. We were, you know, making sales. We’re validating our offer. We were doing a ton of things right. So over the course of six weeks, I would spend about 8 to 10 hours one day a week with them to help them push through that process. It was an intense experience to say the least. I was basically glued to my computer for eight to 10 hours a day.

00:02:14

One day a week to help them get through the material right. Most students saw amazing success. I’ll have a separate video and separate things. You can check out about what we’ve done in our last cohort, but we had one student for example, got leads for under $0.15, which is insane. I’ve only gotten results like that like once in my life.

00:02:32

So, and we’ve gotten many people who launched many people who are validating their idea, and some people obviously you’re going to have that Bell curve of people who don’t really take action. Well, I had one student who was not on the action taking side. They were, you know, for example, they only showed up, I think, to one of the six coaching calls, and I got an angry email from this person.

00:02:52

An it was kind of like roar like a bad like made me like what the heck am I doing with my life type of email and it derailed me for a couple of days. There weren’t a lot of specifics in the email but the emotion was there. It was charged it was like.

00:03:09

I think I’m a pretty authentic guy. I do. I try to live my life. You know, I’m a Christian. I try to always give value first. I don’t think that anything that she’s saying is legitimate, but it’s still no matter what it will still affect you.

00:03:23

So I processed it. I went back through all of my training ’cause I was a manager and a leader of people back in the corporate world.

00:03:29

And I put together my game plan, my action plan. I want to share that with you. OK, at the end of the day, when I talked to this person, I did talk to this person on the next live training we worked through it and I understood this person was just not going through a good time. It really wasn’t even related to me. There was a lot of misunderstanding. There was a lot of personal stuff going on that person’s life.

00:03:49

I just became the pincushion for this customer and So what I’m going to do in this video is walk through the five step process. I want you to kind of remember.

00:03:57

When the next angry customer comes up, not if, but when, because it will OK and you can get through this and in these steps it will be important for you to kind of just go through one by one and not jump to conclusions like I did, even when it happens. OK, so let’s go ahead and waste my time here in dive in. So when you have angry customers, the first thing I want you to do is seek to understand first.

00:04:18

Before you yourself are to be understood. So what that means is if you get an angry email or you get somebody who calls you on the phone and blasts you for a little bit.

00:04:27

I don’t want you to go straight into defense mode. OK, it’s so common that self preservation in us we want to go into that defensive mode of like no, no, you didn’t do this right? Or I did this right. You did not do that, right? That’s a very common flaw that you can do when you’re diving into this experience. And The thing is, is that oftentimes you just don’t have the full picture.

00:04:47

They might be yelling at you for ABC, but in reality they’re frustrated about something else. You know XYZ to use the alphabet metaphor, right? They might be just having a hard time in their personal life, and when you can really ask the questions, which is how you want to understand. First, I want you to ask questions.

00:05:07

You can say hey, tell me more, what can you be more specific if they’re unhappy with the product? What was it? Where did you get stuck? What would result? Do you expect to get, and what result did you actually experience? Or what did you think going in? Were they unclear when they were reading your sales message and did they think they were signing up for something and they got something else?

00:05:29

That was a lot of what happened in this scenario.

00:05:31

The other thing I want you to understand as well is the Bell curve, right? If you guys don’t like statistics, sorry. I’m a big statistics geek, but it helps. So you’re going to have a Bell curve and you’re going to have these standard deviations of people. And what I mean by that is most of your people are going to live in this kind of happy medium place where these people over here.

00:05:51

They’re going to get some results. They’re not going to bother you. They’ll probably never send you an email, and they’ll be able to take your content, your product, and go and take action and get results.

00:06:00

Then there’s the group over here that maybe they they buy from you. They ask you a few questions. Maybe they don’t take action on the content that they purchased, and that’s OK. Unfortunately, that is a lot of the world right? Who will buy something? And they’ll expect the result, but they also know that, hey, I have to do the work to get that result, and if they choose not to do the work.

00:06:20

They’re not going to get mad at you. If anything they might be, you know, looking inside of themselves to see what I need to do differently to take action on the next time I take up an opportunity like that. OK, and that’s going to be about a good 50 to 75% of the population. Then you’re going to have.

00:06:37

The rock stars over here.

00:06:40

And you know, for example, one of my rock stars she was able to launch a very simple add to a very simple opt in Page to a great offer. And she’s getting leads for under well under 1/4 and she’s able to turn those into multiple multiple sales. And she has this engaged list, so she’s doing everything right. She’s listening. She showed up to every call. She asked questions. We worked through it, she went through the content and she implemented.

00:07:04

So that’s going to be like your glory students. This is where your testimonials are going to come from. This is where you’re what makes you happy. What keeps you going in the entrepreneurial journey? It’s going to come from this quadrant. Unfortunately, the quadrant is only like I think it’s 5% of the total population, and again, it’s been a little while since I’ve done actual statistics work, so I don’t know what the exact percentages.

00:07:25

But you get the idea, and then over here on the other side, this is what we’re really talking about here. This is going to be that last five to 10% of your population. That might not really take action on what you do.

00:07:40

But not only that, they’re going to become kind of your problem children, and you know these people are good people, right? Like don’t get mad at the person, understand the situation and understand that you’re going to have this in any business model you have. You’re going to have this Bell curve and just be prepared for it. And that’s really what this video is all about. Alright, so, #2.

00:07:59

I want you to look for evidence, right? So you’re asking questions you’re trying to understand. So once you have that clarity, once you have the understanding of what their actual problem is.

00:08:08

Get some validation going on here and what I mean by that is are they right like they could be right? I I don’t think they’re going to be right, but they very well could be. So this is where you go from turning your lens to talking to asking them questions to now looking at yourself and asking yourself questions. OK is my product good right?

00:08:28

Did my sales page communicate the actual result my product gave them? Or did I you know?

00:08:34

Over promise and Tellem is going to be a turnkey solution. You click two buttons and all of a sudden your ads are profitable. You know, for example, this student of mine.

00:08:44

Their understanding was.

00:08:48

They weren’t doing really the strategy the right way. A lot of things were messed up and their understanding was well. I thought I’d just made a couple tweaks an I spent this money with you, and I made a couple tweaks that everything would work and I’d be profitable and I’d be able to fix my money with an ad. And I told this person like.

00:09:03

This is not a get rich quick scheme. There is work Ann. Go through the process, work with me, show up and we’ll get it done and the people that did that did get it done. So if you look for evidence and you say hey, did I mislead them in the sales process? No, did I under deliver on the product that I made no?

00:09:23

Did I give this person every chance to succeed? Yes, if you can walk through those questions and you can answer honestly to yourself that you did what you were supposed to do, and the only thing you didn’t do was the mind control or the motivation control to get the person to follow through. You’re in the clear, you know there’s another another student. We’ve had a long time ago where they would purchase.

00:09:44

And then immediately they were like, oh, this is actually a lot of work. It’s like, yeah, look man, I I got on the phone with him and said let’s let’s walk through the sales page so you understand what we’re doing and now let’s make a plan for you. In this person went through it. They respected being treated like a person and not being added attack them. I just walk through this that you know the.

00:10:05

Statistics and the facts with them. And then we made a plan in this person. We worked together and we got results right? So look for evidence.

00:10:12

There is a chance that your sales page you were trying so hard to get the sale right that maybe you did over promise it happens, in which case we’re gonna talk about what to do in that scenario. But if you’re in the right, move on if you’re not in the right, you gotta find a way to fix that. And then we’ll talk about some ways to do that towards the end, alright? Look for evidence. #3 is to be fair and balanced.

00:10:32

And this sounds not like Fox News or anything, but in business.

00:10:37

It’s so tempting to be a people pleaser. Most entrepreneurs are people pleasers that people that want to go out and they want to make a difference. And they think that they need to know the customer is always right like one of those old mantras. But there are several scenarios, this one being one of them where the customer can’t be right all the time. And for example, let’s say you’re running a five day special.

00:10:57

And on day six or day seven, you get an email from somebody that says, hey, can I still get this deal? I know I’m late, but excuse excuse excuse. Can you please give me the deal anyways?

00:11:08

The natural intention or like inclination for you as an entrepreneur is Oh yeah, I get another sale or oh yay I can make somebody happy and I can make them make their day and maybe even get a nice testimonial out of it because of my customer service, right? That could be one perspective you might take, but you have to think about the other coin. What about all the others who were on the fence during that five day sale but?

00:11:29

They bought because they knew their chance was ending right. You need to consider what the population is doing and try the best you can to limit those one Z2Z special deals right.

00:11:41

Because what happens is, well, you might think. On the one hand, you’re making a person happy. On the other hand, you’re also kind of diluting your brand, so there were people that would ask against the refund policy for for a special help or some sponsorship or some scholarship. But if you open up to a whole new Avenue of like legalese and Oh well, if I do this and that, and you make all these special deals.

00:12:05

It can be very difficult for you to manage. It can like crowd your headspace and ultimately it’s not doing your brand a good service long term. OK, so if you look at the evidence and you decide, oh, I really screwed up here.

00:12:20

Take action on it, but be able to offer whatever choice you make. If you’re changing something. If you’re extending coaching durations. If you’re giving one on one help. If you’re doing whatever the case might be, it’s important to be balanced because what you don’t want to have happen is you have somebody who was a very happy customer, but then they come up to find out that you were making special deals with other customers, but they didn’t get it because they were respectful of you and they didn’t like beg for it.

00:12:43

Then you don’t want to create, you know, take your best customers and make them angry at you or upset because you were not fair. OK, so be fair and balanced and #4. Always be professional, you know count to 10 before responding. Do all those things. Make sure if you get if people ad hominem attack you like they attack your character, your personality or.

00:13:03

You, as a person, right?

00:13:05

That stinks. Nobody wants that the last thing you should do is do it back to them. Never make judgements, never try, never to assume what’s going on if you’re going to make assumptions, try to assume in the best light possible. So maybe like hey, they’re probably having a bad day. And let’s try to understand that more when you go back to number one and you understand what’s going on.

00:13:26

You can remove the judgment from however you respond to it, and you can maintain your professionalism right. There can be difficult. It can be difficult to be a professional when things get really rough, but it’s important to do that and to make sure that you stick to your band.

00:13:43

And then Lastly #5 always maintain that spirit of continuous improvement. So even if you go back and you look at the evidence and said hey everything was good, I want you to go through an that person was misled for some reason. Maybe it was just they didn’t want, they didn’t want it bad enough so they didn’t take action. Is there any messaging in your sales page that you can improve that?

00:14:03

Can you put a big warning sign that says, hey, by the way, this is what can happen. You need to put in the work. I’m here to help you, but this is what you need to do.

00:14:12

That can hurt your number of sales, but it’s also going to save your brain so much anxiety if you get people who come in with false expectations.

00:14:21

So keep your continuous improvement. Ask them for specifics of what they didn’t like in the course or the product or the service. What were they misled by? And look for opportunities either within the product itself, in the marketing messaging, or the ads of how you’re trying to drive people towards this whole process. What can you do to reduce the recurrence of that issue? Because essentially.

00:14:41

Angry customer is a defect, right? If I think back to engineering?

00:14:46

The whole point of a process, the sales process of manufacturing process anything is to reduce defects. An if you find out that you have a defect in your process, get the root cause. Figure out what led to that problem, what led to that defect emerging, and what can you do to prevent it in the future.

00:15:03

So that’s it for me today guys. I think my comments are working. I’m not seeing any so let me know if you can see or hear me in the comments here and oopsies.

00:15:15

And I lost my screen. Darn technology. Yeah, so that’s it for me today guys, I hope this is helpful. I hope this.

00:15:22

Let you know that it’s OK to get frustrated with when things aren’t going your way. You’re going to have upset customers. There’s a right and a wrong way to deal with them. I hope I gave you 5 actionable tips to make sure you stay on the right side of the equation and that’s it. One special note I want to let you know is I did recently put together.

00:15:44

A brand new funnel A done for you funnel. This is a new opportunity. A new offer I’m putting together. It’s in the works, but I have one that’s up and coming right now. If you go to freakyfastfunnels.com there should be a link in the description of this video.

00:15:57

An awesome then you will be able to go in and take a look at it. Right now I have some funnels available for influencer soft, which is an all-in-one solution. Is very very easy to work with. I’m enjoying it is what I’m teaching inside some of my courses, so that’s available. And if you have any suggestions on what you’d like to see if you’re struggling with designing out something or pising together.

00:16:18

Your final let me know in the comments down below how I can help you and serve you wanna make sure that I remove as many barriers as possible from people being able to take action on these activities? Seeing some nice comments. Thank you guys. Excellent customer service suggestions. Thank you. You’re very welcome and Larry says great share. Appreciate it man.

00:16:35

Alright guys that’s it for me. Today I will see you in the next live stream. Thank you so much and be well.

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  • Hey John

    Excellent tips. Kinda reminds me of the “7 Habits…” book.

    It really does help in general to listen first and take action after you have actual information.

    This an also be a great way to build relationships that would otherwise have simply fizzled, ending in an unsubscribe or worse – indifference

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