Trust, Buyer’s Remorse & Understanding it Better

Buyer’s Remorse, How Can Trust Affect It?

I had a really interesting conversation recently with a chap who is involved with a hearing loss advocacy organisation. We were talking about people with hearing loss, their wants and needs and general experiences. He said something to me about trust and buyer’s remorse that struck me profoundly. In essence he said that trust had a great effect on buyer’s remorse.

He spoke of a hypothetical situation where someone has purchased a set of hearing aids at €4,000, meets someone who has purchased a set for €1,400. The person who has paid the most money feels ripped off and buyer’s remorse sets in. Destroying the trust between the dispenser and the Patient, the break down in trust can then be exacerbated if the rehabilitation is in any way difficult and results aren’t instantaneous.

It was quite serendipitous to meet this chap, because I had just posted an article on Audiology Engine called Engendering Trust in Your On-line Presence. So trust in relation to healthcare provision had been on my mind. I just hadn’t made the leap in connecting buyer’s remorse and trust breakdown before.

Buyers Remorse

This was a new way for me to think about buyer’s remorse, I never really was conscious that buyer’s remorse at its core was really a break down in trust. This conceptual thinking turns buyer’s remorse from something we can barely effect into something that we can plan strategy for.

How Do You Overcome A Breakdown in Trust?

The question really is how do we engender trust that can’t be broken? Because if we do that, we should not have to worry about a breakdown. I have spoken about that in other articles on different channels and I don’t plan to go over the ground I have covered elsewhere. Honestly contrary to rumour I don’t like to hear myself talk. What I would like to explore is how we directly respond to the scenario that the chap highlighted. The four thousand versus the fourteen hundred pair.

Information At The Right Time is The Key

I think that information delivered is the key to that scenario, but more importantly, information delivered at the right time. If we try to prove the price after the fact, we are on the back foot, we are seen as talking sales. However, if we supply the information before the fact, we are seen as providing information. A quite smart Scottish Bloke named Prentice taught me that. Don’t let it go to your head you like me are still an F.I.B.

What Information Though

That is an interesting question, the issue here is that buyers don’t have the knowledge to understand the product. It is a classic example of the principal-agent dilemma. If we are doing all the right things in our Practices and our consultations we have taken steps to engender trust. That trust extends to our abilities and our commitment to doing the right thing for the Patient. Does it necessarily extend to trusting us not to over price? I think that is something we should explore another time.

Even if it does, the consumer in this case may be forgiven in wrongly thinking that a hearing aid is a hearing aid is a hearing aid. How do we make sure that the consumer knows that is not the case and how do we make sure that the consumer knows that for instance, one Phonak hearing aid is not necessarily the same as another Phonak hearing aid?

Getting The Level of Information Right

I think the key is delivering enough information to deliver an appreciation of the factors without putting them to sleep or over-loading them. The information needs to be delivered at an early stage, either after the decision to buy or at the fitting. I know that many will do this already, but with the idea of trust in mind perhaps we should look at how we do it.

Providing Written Information

I think that it is important to supply written information to support your recommendations. I think that it will help greatly in the scenario discussed at the beginning of this article. The information should include manufacturer brand, technology level and type. I know there is an argument that this information just encourages price shopping or comparison.

However, if it is the difference between the continuance of a long-term relationship with a consumer and a return because of lack of knowledge. Isn’t it better to give the information in a clear and understandable way?

 

About Geoffrey Cooling

my name is Geoffrey Cooling and I am the author here at Just Audiology Stuff. I have been involved in the Hearing Healthcare Profession for several years now. I initially worked as a Hearing Healthcare Professional for a large national retailer in Ireland. After several years in Practice I was approached to work for a manufacturer, where I was employed for five years. I am now the Co Founder of a business called Audiology Engine. We design websites, undertake content marketing and generally look after everything digital for audiological practices. I am also a contributor to many hearing profession periodicals and websites. I have written two commercially available books, The Little Book of Hearing Aids which is written for hearing aid consumers and Audiology Marketing in a Digital World which is written for Audiology Practice Owners. They are both available in Paperback and Kindle versions on Amazon. I also write for consumers on the website Hearing Aid Know, which is a website with the mission of demystifying hearing aids, their types and their technology. I have a great interest in commercial strategy as it applies to Healthcare in general and specifically to Hearing Healthcare. I also have a great interest in the psychology of sales and human interaction. I have been involved with social media for some time, both personally and professionally. I find the engagement and discourse on some social media channels fascinating. I instituted social media strategy for the company I worked for as an experiment. That experiment soon spread throughout the company and I am proud to say that the company is probably one of the most active in the industry. I would like to point out that all views, opinions and thoughts here are mine own. Unless of course they have been planted by the pod people, you just can’t take your eyes off the pod people. Those views do not necessarily reflect upon any views or opinions held by my employer, if I ever get another one. I think that our industry is in the middle of a time of huge change, I think that the change will be forced by both internal and external pressure. I think that private Independent Healthcare Practices will have to be smart and lithe of feet in order to meet these changes. I hope that some of my blatherings are of benefit to those Practices, Independent Hearing Healthcare Practices need to survive. I believe that if that occurs it will be of real benefit to Patients. I hope that I, and my writings will play a small part in their continued success.

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