When our company makes a mistake, it's important that we apologize. But just as important is what we say next. In this video, see what to write after we apologize.
- You received an email from one of your customers about a legitimate problem and you've written a sincere apology. That's great, but the I'm sorry may not be all you need to say. What you write after the apology can be just as important as the apology itself. You can explain why the problem happened, or you might want to explain what you're going to do to fix the problem, or it might be best to explain what the customer can do if this happens again.
Use any one or a combination of these explanations in your reply. Let's look at an example. A customer has written your company an angry email because she was locked out of her online account. No matter what she tried she couldn't log in. And why was she locked out? Because your system had a day long glitch and all your customers were unable to log in. It was a nightmare, but now it's fixed. In this situation you'll definitely have to write a sentence or two of sincere apology, then choose which of the three approaches is best suited to the situation.
Explain why the problem happened, an outdated system plugin caused the glitch. Explain what you're going to do, or have done, to fix the problem, once we realized that the glitch had been caused by a system plugin, we replaced it immediately. Explain what the customer can do if this happens again, going forward, you can also sign up to receive a confirmation via text or email, that way you'll know exactly when our repair technician will arrive.
The sincere apology means a great deal to a customer, but an I'm sorry with nothing after it can come across somewhat odd. If you write a sentence of explanation after the apology, you'll be both sincere and informative, and that's good.
- Reading emails carefully
- Anticipating follow-up questions
- Answering all of the customer's questions
- Handling difficult questions
- Explaining your process to the customer
- Paraphrasing the customer's situation
- Acknowledging the customer's feelings
- Apologizing when appropriate
- Avoiding clichéd language
- Demonstrating empathy and sincerity in your writing
- Building rapport