Show me you care! Dealing with post-purchase dissonance

I spoke about giving your customers a reason to buy from you in a previous post The Reason Why and wanted to expand on this theme today.

Once you’ve given them “the reason why” what next?  It would be nice to just sit back and watch the pennies roll into a bank account but in reality that won’t continue if you go cold on your customers once they have purchased from you.

Post-purchase dissonance is something that we all experience, in a nutshell its the unease you feel after you have committed to or made a purchase.

A good example of this would be choosing a new car.  Please note that the value of the purchase isn’t the thing in question here, we have already assumed the cost is something that the client is comfortable with and we are dealing instead with the choice of supplier.  This is applicable whether you are selling products or services.

So using myself as the example.  I decide I’m going to buy a new car.  My budget is £20,000 and it has to have certain features.  I narrow my choice to three vehicles.  All the sales people at each dealership want my business.  I am being wooed to within an inch of my life and eventually I choose the one I want.  So I go in, get plied with coffee, sign the paperwork, am assured that I’ve made the best decision and told when I can take delivery of my new vehicle.  Everything’s perfect.  Or is it?!

Now the deal is done I am out in the cold.  The sales person no longer takes my call as a priority, the other dealerships are still chasing me, I’m starting to feel like maybe, just maybe, I made the wrong choice.  Even if the car is perfect it has taken some of the shine off my purchase and experience in general.

So the point of this post is to think about how you treat your clients and customers after they’ve bought from you.  I know that you wouldn’t switch from hot to cold like my example but I wanted to  paint a vivid picture for you!  However, keep up the emails, make a note in your diary to call me after I’ve left to thank me for my business, call me when I have taken delivery of the item or used your service – ask me if I’m happy!  Us Brits are notorious for not wanting to ask in case we get negative feedback!   However, negative feedback can be turned into one of the most powerful selling tools you have.   Sort out my problem and I’ve then gone from a ruffled customer who wasn’t going to make an issue of it but I wouldn’t have recommended you to anyone else – to a delighted customer who will take great pleasure in telling anyone who will listen how you exceeded my expectations!

I can help you to put a post-purchase communications strategy in place – please get in touch.

About Marie

I started Elite Edge at the end of 1999 and I am still as passionate about marketing today as I was then - probably more so because I consider myself very lucky to do a job that I love every day! My area of specialism is strategic planning but like most people these days, I wear many other hats too!
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