How after sales contributes to brand reputation
After sales is often non-existent, designed to minimise costs, or simply not a priority for many brands – but it should be. With more and more consumers reading reviews online before purchasing, after sales service is becoming an increasingly important tool to drive brand differentiation.
Most brands are often pretty good at romancing us to get us to buy their product. However, it is often months or years later, when something goes wrong where true brand differentiation really becomes apparent. So often, we feel dumped by the brand as soon as we have a problem. Fitbit seems to be one of the exceptions who gets the importance of after sales service.
After seven months, my much-loved Fitbit Charge HR band started to bubble and then the clasp snapped. After searching online, I realised that this is a common problem and it seemed like a real flaw in the product. There are loads of people complaining on the Fitbit Community portal and other forums.
However, what was unexpected is how Fitbit manages to shift a negative product issue into positive brand sentiment.
While there are lots of complaints on the Fitbit community site about the bands breaking, what is interesting is how many customers are defending the brand and it’s customer support.
“Fitbit Support is amazing and gets things done quick.” – Rcordero
“Support was awesome so any issues email them right away as I got an answer and a solution within a day.” – Shannonrichards
What happened when I contacted them? They didn’t disappoint. I was so impressed, I thought it might serve as inspiration for other brands on what to do when their product or service fails.
How Fitbit turns a negative into a positive brand experience
Fitbit responded within hours, on a weekend as well. They were on brand, friendly, and empathetic. They didn’t blame me or make me feel bad about the situation.
“We’re sorry to hear that your Charge HR’s band has come off. Rest assured we’ll find a solution to get you back on track.” – The Fitbit team.
Most importantly, they were solution oriented and demonstrated that they didn’t want to lose me as a Fitbit fan. The Fitbit customer service team seemed to be well trained in turning a negative into a positive brand experience.
“Thanks for being part of our Fitbit Family. Hope you continue enjoying the Fitbit experience after you receive your replacement.” – The Fitbit team.
Finally, they followed up with a quick survey to check ‘how they did’. This demonstrates Fitbit’s commitment to continually improving the customer experience.
While it seems, Fitbit has a product issue with the Charge HR bands, they are managing to convert frustrated customers into brand advocates.
I suspect the issues with the band and the fact it cannot be replaced are part of the reason why Fitbit has stopped selling the Charge HR. The charge replacement, the Charge 2, does come with the ability to replace the band.
Michael is Managing Partner and Strategy Director at Truly Deeply, a brand agency with 25 years’ experience working with brands to position them for growth. His deep expertise is in unlocking the strategic power of your brand to create a differentiated, compelling and authentic brand proposition that will engage all your audiences. Michael has extensive experience working across Australia and the Middle East working with leading Australian and International organisations across just about every sector.