Mystery Shopping investigations into Claims Management Companies and law firms

Protect Your Brand and Customer Relationships with a confidential Mystery Shopping investigation

Over the years, law firms and claims management companies have helped millions of people obtain compensation from businesses when they’ve been treated badly (for example, badly advised, misled, or overcharged).

Often, these claims businesses operate on a “no-win, no-fee” basis, so they offer a valuable service, with no risk to consumers.

But unfortunately, these organisations are not always shining examples of virtue and righteousness.

Sometimes, their own conduct can be less than perfect, and they can cause undue harm to businesses and their customers.

It has been known for these organisations to

  • make blatantly false statements (e.g. about businesses they are offering to claim from),
  • actively mislead customers or prospective customers,
  • Fail to clearly explain their own charges,
  • Make unqualified and unrealistic promises about potential claims,
  • Use manipulative tactics to make sales,
  • Pressurise and rush prospective customers into making commitments (e.g. before reading t’s & c’s)
  • Harass potential customers into signing agreements,
  • Show no regard for customer vulnerability when there are clear indications of it.

…and more.

It’s been known for them to charge fees that are deemed by some (e.g. the FCA) to be unreasonably high. This could be in situations where the company to be claimed from is more than happy to pay compensation directly to these customers on a simple request.

While focused (understandably) on their own goals for gaining new cases and customers, these organisations can sometimes fall foul of important industry and professional codes and regulations (for example, the Solicitors Regulation Authority’s Code of Conduct, the FCA New Consumer Duty, and / or the UK GDPR).

Of course, these organisations are businesses too, and they need to make a profit. So perhaps it shouldn’t be any surprise that rules and codes sometimes get broken here and there.

But what if their conduct is adversely and unfairly affecting your business and your customers?

Male employee calling a helpline

Could claims companies be causing undue harm to your reputation?

Your business depends on maintaining a superb reputation and on building strong, trusting relationships with your customers.

If claims companies are using improper tactics to target your customers, it could cause significant damage to both.

 

Schedule a discovery call or call now on 01392 984224.

Claims types and industries

Over recent years, businesses across various industries have seen their customers being actively targeted by organisations offering to help them obtain compensation.

Financial Services

A lot of activity has focused on Financial Services organisations (e.g. banks and other lenders, insurance businesses, brokers, financial advisors, wealth management companies and others), with claims being brought regarding multiple product types.

The most well-known of these has been payment protection insurance (PPI), which led to £40-50 billion being paid out by UK banks (with £3-5billion of this believed to have gone to claims management companies and law firms).

There are many other financial products and charges that have been the subject of claims in recent months and years, including car finance (claims concerning PCP finance deals and those involving discretionary commission arrangements), pensions, Gap Insurance, as well as account charges (e.g. management fees).

The Financial Claims Management industry looks to be set for continued growth.

Several of the product types shown above are each expected to see total claims values larger than those resulting from the PPI mis-selling scandal.

The FCA is continuing to regulate the Financial Services industry more rigorously, it’s pointing to more instances of mis-selling, and it is placing increasing responsibility onto firms for the actual outcomes achieved by customers. Indeed, the FCA defines mis-selling as “a failure to deliver good outcomes for consumers”.

The scene seems to be set for more claims to be pursued regarding more financial products.

 

Other Industries

Other industries have also been targeted by claims management companies, including utilities and telecommunications, automotive manufacturers and dealerships, the legal profession itself, and others.

How Mystery Shopping can put you in the picture

If your reputation and customer relationships are being damaged, remaining in the dark is no solution at all. Knowledge is power.

A crucial first step is getting a clear idea of exactly what these organisations are doing, so that you can decide on appropriate action.

A well-managed Mystery Shopping investigation can help you achieve that.

So, how does it work?

Essentially, highly skilled, and thoroughly briefed mystery shoppers, posing as your customers (current or former), interact with relevant law firms and claims companies. They present themselves, convincingly, as potential claimants and hold conversations with the claims companies and/or law firms. Then they report back in detail on the interaction(s) and provide redacted copies of any written materials.

This allows you to establish exactly what statements are being made about your business, and what the companies are proposing and offering to your customers.

By arranging multiple enquiries to each target business, you can gain a balanced and reliable understanding of their overall practices.

By testing a range of different scenarios, you can gain a full and rounded understanding of their conduct, including any problematic actions, statements or tactics that might be being used.

Schedule a discovery call or call now on 01392 984224.

Why Choose Customerwise for your Mystery Shopping investigation?

Specialising in tailored and “high stakes” Mystery Shopping projects, we can deliver a well-managed and effective investigation to shine a light on the conduct of law firms and claims management companies, to help you discover whether inappropriate tactics are being used to target your customers.

Confidentiality

Confidentiality is usually a top priority for clients commissioning projects of this type. We’re able to manage and deliver these projects in ways that ensure the highest levels of confidentiality.

One important aspect is not alerting claims companies during the investigation. As well as using skilled shoppers and thoroughly briefing them, we use unique technology (contact us to find out more) and take specific steps to ensure our shoppers are not detected by the target businesses.

It might also be important to you to absolutely minimise the number of people who are aware of the project and who is funding it. We can even ensure that our own mystery shoppers (who sign strict confidentiality arrangements in any case) remain unaware of the organisation (yours) that’s commissioning the research.  Contact us for a confidential discussion to find out more.

A competent partner

There are lots more reasons to trust Customerwise:

  • Realistic, convincing and on-brief interactions: Our skilled mystery shoppers are expertly coached to engage in realistic and on-brief interactions, ensuring the integrity of the investigation and the reliability of the findings. Where appropriate, we headhunt people with specific knowledge/skillsets to act as mystery shoppers.
  • A focus on bespoke solutions: Customerwise has a track record of successful delivery on fully bespoke and “high-stakes” investigative projects, including in professional and financial services, as well as competitor intelligence projects in niche B2B industries.
  • Bespoke Reporting: All reporting output (and any relevant supporting evidence to be collected) is custom-designed and agreed in collaboration with you, to highlight the most important information (while adhering to the UK GDPR). We will analyse all findings and present these to you along with key take-aways, presented in an easily digestible format to aid your decision-making.
  • Elite MSPA Membership: We’re an Elite member of the Mystery Shopping Professionals Association (MSPA), and we’ve been members since 2018.
  • We’re a safe pair of hands: The quality of our service can be evidenced by countless client testimonials. Our team is highly accessible, responsive, flexible, and proactive. We work with you and do whatever it takes to obtain the information you need. Rather than being just another Mystery Shopping service provider, we’re a proactive partner working to help protect you and your business interests.

Take Action to Safeguard Your Business

If you’re concerned about the impact of law firms and claims management companies on your reputation and your customer relationships, you can take action.

With the right approach, you can obtain a clear view of potential threats to your brand and your customer relationships. Armed with this information, you can plan a wise course of action to protect your business.

Don’t allow claims companies to undermine your brand integrity and customer trust. Contact Customerwise today for a confidential consultation.

Schedule a discovery call or call now on 01392 984224.