How to write effective customer emails: Part 8 of The Ultimate Customer Guide
‘The best time to call me is to email me’- Ever come across that now? Yeah, the fad.
Holding the line on the other end is a thing of the past as customers hardly want to do that now. While mobile phones have been synonymous with calling, they’re used more to avoid-the-talking and do the typing instead. Comes into the picture the little, old email!
Emails have been in existence for over two decades now, and can be attributed to losing touch and gaining momentum simultaneously- Losing touch, as people discard the concept thinking it to be quite orthodox and gaining momentum as things of the past are making appearances in the present. While it might be incorrect to say that emails had been out of fashion completely, they were relatively less used compared to the quick texts or calls.
What happened then? Perhaps customers got tired of long hours of waiting where the output was relatively lesser compared to the inputs aka your patience and waiting time. As a customer support representative yourself, imagine having to deal with customer woes every single minute of your business hours- Jeez, like a nightmare.
Ba dum tss, and that’s when the great concept of electronic mails seemed to spring back into action! But what should an immaculate error-free email contain? We present to you, in this article, top tips on how to write successful customer emails. While this is written from the business PoV, you can apply this to understand the functionings of the business. Any business requires a lot of diligence coupled with patience and the resources.
- Personalise: Always personalise the emails. A ‘Hi John’ would earn your message more glances than ‘Dear Sir/ Madam’. Also, people check their emails in the morning- Nobody is in the mood to go through monotony as the first thing after waking up. Plus, first-name basis is quite the vogue. How do you personalise mails for a lot of recipients? The hack here is Microsoft mail merge.
- Ask ‘How are you?’ instead of ‘Hope you’re doing well’: Keeping in line with personalisation. Avoid generalisation at all costs. Make the customer feel as if your business revolves only and only around them. The more valued they feel, the better chances of your business climbing the ladders of success.
- Express gratitude: No matter what. If the customer leaves negative feedback, use it constructively. It’s nothing personal, do not hold grudges. If it’s a review that you don’t quite agree with, accept and work on the ways to avoid a similar thing in the future. Thank the customer for investing their time into this. Trust me, that hits a different notch.
- Quick replies: Obviously, nobody expects you to sit by your phone or laptop 24/7. Reply as humanly as fast as you can. Doesn’t mean you strain yourself. Remember, half-knowledge is dangerous and half-hearted efforts don’t count. You can also use predetermined or canned replies to ease your work up to some extent.
- Work on the email tone and structure: The great writer Oscar Wilde once remarked, ‘Don’t use big words, they mean so little.’ I couldn’t agree more. Some people are often of the opinion that the fancier the words are, the better the impact is. No. It’s not your school’s essay competition nor a language exam. Extravagant sentences might render no meaning at all, or perhaps contrary to what you might actually want to imply. There’s a high chance that it might leave your customers bemused, which would make them email you again and the process continues- Phew, more work!
Also, work on the body of the mail. Try euphemisms- Positive tone instead of negative. Nobody likes to read ‘I’m sorry, out of stock’. Perhaps ‘I deeply regret the inconvenience caused and while it may not be in stock at the moment, I could order it for you if you’d be kind enough to wait a while further’.
- Install Grammarly: It’s a gem. I do know that by the time you go through these and a few more points as to how to write an email, you’re most likely to forget the actual response that you were supposed to provide as it can be too much at times. Grammarly can help you with your spellings, punctuations and might even correct the sentences for you.
- Address the concerns: Nobody likes being beaten around the bush. Ensure that you address your customers’ queries and not have anything unanswered. If a particular concern requires further redressal, ensure that you follow-up.
- Practise before you preach: Do your research well. Implement the solution yourself before offering it as a piece of advice. Like I stated before, half-knowledge is dangerous, especially in these competitive times.
While some people might discard these points taking them to be rather preposterous as email writing is perhaps a very simple thing and while this can be indeed be inundating at times, practise and perseverance will make you better. Value your customers, focus on the business and use empathy at times are all that matter.