Rapport is more challenging when you have to tell customers something they don't want to hear. Get three techniques that will help you maintain rapport in any situation.
- When you can't tell your customer exactly what they want to hear, maintaining a sense of rapport can be challenging. But it's possible to give your customer bad news with empathy and a positive slant. When you have to give a customer bad news, do it using the feel, felt, found method. This approach helps you to foster a sense of connection with customers, even when you can't give them exactly what they want. The basic model for feel, felt, found is relay that you understand how the customer feels.
I understand why you feel that way. Show the customer they aren't alone. I had another customer who had a similar situation and felt the same way. Tell the customer what you've found to work. We found that this works best. Let me show you how this looks in action. I'm currently working with a client that sells food products. A question they get from customers is what ingredients are in this yogurt? When a customer asks for ingredients, it's usually because they have a food allergy.
The problem is, my client can't give the complete ingredient list because that's giving away their secret sauce. But all of their products do list ingredients known to cause allergic reactions in some people. So I helped my client respond to these customers using feel, felt, found like this. I understand how you feel. My daughter has a walnut allergy and like you, I have to know what's in the food she eats. We've had other customers who felt just as you do.
Here's what we found helped them. While the other customers couldn't get the full ingredient list, they could spot the specific ingredients that are known to trigger allergies because all of our labels list every ingredient that has a known allergic reaction. So the purpose of feel, felt, found here is to convey empathy and to offer a useful solution for delivering less than ideal news to a customer. But feel, felt, found can also be used in selling situations.
A lady at a phone store used the steps on my brilliantly. I was a loyal BlackBerry user and I told her, I just couldn't see myself using an iPhone for business. She used the three steps on me this way. "A lot of people feel that way. "My dad felt that way, too, "until I showed him how emails show up the iPhone." And she showed me her email on her phone. "A lot of people," she said, "are surprised "to find apps on the iPhone look "and feel more like they do on their PCs." 30 minutes later, I walked out with my first iPhone.
That's to say these steps aren't just for giving bad news. They're an effective way to help your customers connect with you and the solution you're offering.
- Identify how to build a rapport with customers through acknowledging concern.
- Explore the rapport building technique of yielding to customers.
- Break down how speaking in complete sentences during a customer service call helps to build rapport.
- Examine the ways to build rapport through a customer chat interaction.
- Identify the best ways to use rapport to disarm angry customers.