You’re making a complaint. But what do you want?

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You’ve heard it a hundred times. You listen to someone ranting on and on at a customer service representative and maybe you understand what upset him—but you haven’t a clue what he wants done about it. The rep is left with nothing to offer but apologies.  And sometimes apologies just set off fresh explosions.

As you’re writing your PeopleClaim, think carefully about exactly what it would take to make things right. A repair? A replacement? Your money back? Some extra frequent flyer points? OK, ask for it. Be perfectly clear.

Could you be just a tiny bit to blame?

Also think about whether you bear any responsibility at all. For instance, that extremely expensive espresso maker broke—ouch!—but you brought it back well outside the return or warranty period. Would it be reasonable to ask for just half your money back, or to accept a replacement, or a partial trade-in on a different item? If you insist on 100 percent of your money back, and nothing else will do, you may leave the other party with nowhere to go. Acknowledge their policy, but explain why you think the circumstances warrant an exception.

Taking responsibility any part you played in the problem can help a business understand that you’re a reasonable person, rather than—not to put too fine a point on it—a total nutjob.

Put yourself in their shoes

You know your side of the story all too well. But what’s their side? What would you say if it was you on the other end of the telephone or across the counter? Playing the devil’s advocate can help you come up with a really fair suggestion for resolution.

For instance, you’re a freelance graphic designer and your invoice hasn’t been paid on time. Your rent is due, so you’re desperate.  But the business has asked you to correct a blooper before they pay your invoice, and it’ll be a week before you can get it done. How about asking for half immediately, and the rest within 24 hours of the mistake being fixed?

You want to get your problem resolved—not hand-to-hand combat unto death

Claimants tell us that one of the most irritating things they suffer is repeatedly contacting customer service and being told no, when the problem is clearly the company’s fault. So we understand—by the time you start to file your PeopleClaim, you’re chewing nails. But spit them out.

The key to a successful claim is this: write what happened calmly and politely; reference any rights you believe were violated, and spell out exactly what you want.  Be open to offers. Help the other party feel good about helping you, not ready for a stiff drink.

You can feel good about knowing that even though you shouldn’t have had to escalate the problem in the first place, the next customer probably won’t have to.

Remember this: most legal actions are resolved through negotiation before they ever get to court. If you’re smart, you can negotiate constructively without ever hiring an expensive lawyer in the first place. Or worse–giving up.


Oct 2015

The Review of Reviews

At PeopleClaim, we know the importance of internet reputation. Our service is built around the idea that people use the internet to find reviews, ratings, and complaints about the businesses and products they are looking to purchase. With this in mind, we have created an infographic looking at some statistical measures of ratings / reviews. We were curious how many people were searching for reviews, what they were finding, and what type of decisions they were making based on this information.

Check it out below:

PeopleClaim - The Review of Reviews

Have you had a bad experience with a company, service provider, professional, or individual? PeopleClaim can help you get your problem resolved quickly using our online dispute resolution system. Visit to learn more about how we can help you resolve a complaint you’ve had. It’s free, easy to use, and get’s results.

Jan 2013

Customer service complaints: what you should know before you call.

Product and service problems are part of everyday life. Sooner or later most of us find ourselves talking with a customer service rep. Unfortunately, using the wrong approach can get in the way and lead to disappointing results.

Remember, you have a better-than-even chance of getting what you want: companies have a vested interest in keeping you as a customer. It costs more to find a new customer than to keep you happy. So, how do you make a complaint that gets results?

Here are a few cool tips that may help.

First, decide what you want.

Think through what end result you’re looking for — a repair, refund, apology…?

Second, remember to get your facts straight.

Be informed and know your rights by reading the warranties and policies of the company. Also gather receipts or other documents that may have product and order numbers or other purchase information. With this in hand, you’re ready to talk with customer service.

What to say when you get on the phone.

Once you get through the phone loop and finally reach a human, remember to stay cool: venting is not the same as making a complaint. Focus the call on resolving the problem. Most psychologists recommend taking a confident but cordial tone when talking with service reps. Keep in mind that any human can get defensive, which may break down their willingness to listen.

Just state your problem factually, and say what you want without ambiguity.

You might be surprised how fast you get your complaint resolved.


What if a phone call isn’t enough?

Put it in writing.

PeopleClaim provides you with a 4-step online resolution process that turns your complaint into a professionally presented claim.

Powerful incentives help get it resolved quickly and fairly. PeopleClaim offers tools like online posting, copying your complaint to regulators, connecting with legal experts and other claimants. These give you leverage and motivate the other party to settle.

Have a complaint?  Why not let PeopleClaim help you resolve it.




Oct 2012