Web Writing That Works!

           A Project of
           The Communication Circle

Guidelines Rants Patterns Poems Services Classes Press Blog Resources About Us Site Map

HomePatterns > How to answer customer email                           




Provide detailed contacts with names and pictures, not faceless forms

Set up guidelines for responses

Make the subject line mean something

Start off recognizing what they said

Encourage your feminine side

Drop in boilerplate answers to common questions

Add a signature block

How to answer customer email

Sure, automate a reply saying you will get to their questions as soon as you can.  Good practice: reply within an hour. Best: reply within a second.

But what do you say when you actually get around to responding to the person's question, complaint, confusion?

You have a few moments to think, and you can write a reasonably personal response without having to dial, wait, go through an extension, interrupt the consumer at work, exchange pleasantries about the weather, and listen to a long historical narrative leading slowly up to the problem itself.

So E-mail lets you answer a lot more questions than you could handle on the phone or by regular mail.

That's why you should invite e-mail questions from your guests.

In this module, we walk you through a pattern that will help you solve your customer's problems, while ensuring that they come back and buy again.


E-mail responses to customers, chapter from Hot Text, Web Writing that Works (PDF, 995K, or about 18 minutes at 56K)

Case study in e-response: Amazon. com



For more information on e-mailing in response to customer messages: Cohen (2001), Flynn (2001), Hartman and Nantz (1996), Herring (1996), Korenman (1999), Overly (1999), Silver (1997, 2000), Sterne (1996).

I am patiently awaiting your email reply, so I can get this bug off my head.


Home | Guidelines | Rants | Patterns | Poems | Services | Classes | Press | Blog |
Resources | About Us | Site Map

Web Writing that Works!
  2002-2004 Jonathan and Lisa Price
The Communication Circle
Discuss at HotText@yahoogroups.com
Email us directly at ThePrices@ThePrices.com
Order Hot Text (the book) from Amazon