Risk, Issues & Crisis

Leading clothes retailer

How did we advise with an ongoing customer complaint that posed a significant reputational risk to the brand?


A leading online clothes retailer approached us for support around an ongoing customer complaint involving significant personal injury.

The complaint had escalated to such an extent that the customer was threatening national press involvement which would result in a significant risk to the brand’s reputation.

The customer wanted to be taken seriously and to stop the same thing happening to another customer.


Instinctif Partners advised on a more appropriate outreach to the customer in an aim to deescalate the dispute before it hit the press.

We assisted in the preparation for a face to face meeting between the company and the customer, including coaching the company’s European Operations and Marketing Directors ahead of this.

Instinctif Partners prepared a pre-emptive media holding statement, as well as communication collateral that were used throughout this stage of the complaint.


The retailer committed to conducting a root-cause analysis to identify the origin of the problem.

The retailer provided an ex-gratia payment to the customer as a gesture of goodwill.

The customer complaint was resolved, with no adverse publicity for the brand. The customer felt listened to and confident that the retailer had taken their complaint seriously.