What to do when your technology lets you down

Over the weekend, GOOGLE, Gmail, YouTube, Snapchat and Uber went offline leaving millions of users unable to reach any of the services. The Sun reported the news about this failure and users commented on their frustration over a number of channel with comments like: “@snapchat can we get a move on… I have an important conversation to finish” and  “Gmail is broken… Google Cloud is having issues… all over the place.”

Some of these hashtags, #YouTubeDOWN and #snapchatdown rose to the top of Twitter’s trending topics section as a result of users voicing their frustrations in real time. When technology doesn’t function the way it should, the impact can be disastrous. Especially if your business is driven by and is reliant on these types of services to drive revenue.

What can you do when technology lets you down and your affiliate business is affected?Here are some of our top tips to keep you going when you’re in the midst of a service lull:

  1. Stay Calm

You can’t react appropriately if you don’t really know the route of the problem. So focus your energy there first. If your site is down, contact the appropriate parties that manage your URL and get them to identify the problem first. Once you have a better understanding of how and why the technology has failed, you can start to address the problem.

2. Acknowledge the problem & Own it

Often businesses don’t take the hit head on, it’s natural to want to shy away from a problem and avoid confrontation, but the problem is people will notice there is a problem, and with social media being so easy to report and send messages on, they will take about it before you do. So, get in front of it and take ownership of the problem first – apologise for the inconvenience and start to discuss the next steps clearly for the issue to be resolved.

3. Communicate clearly

It’s irrelevant to suppliers that your site could be down or a mistake has occurred. Your client won’t care. If you try and shift the blame, it can make its way onto social media. Be like a red rag to a bull, and the conversation can spiral out of control. It is far better to begin every interaction from the viewpoint of your customer; describe briefly what has happened, what it meant, and ultimately, what you are doing to make it right.

4. Make it right

It’s important that you communicate with your clients and look at the way you’ll be handling customer service to make it right. Some of the best emails I’ve received have been after a mistake has occurred. Owning up and admitting that you are human, is never a bad thing – so long as you make it right your clients will be forgiving.

Watch this week’s #AfillateDriveTime to hear more tips on how you can cope when your technology fails you. Tune in Wednesdays for regular, FREE advice on how to improve your affiliate relationships and boost your affiliate program performance.

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