If you screw up, you'd better be damn good at apologizing, or your customers and reputation will suffer. Here are some simple rules to adopt. Rules to follow
1. See the cause behind the anger
People can get upset and even angry because they are afraid you might ignore them. Acknowledge the problem and reassure the customer that you'll settle everything. Stay sincere to show that you care, and their fear is groundless.
2. Avoid formal vibe
Сeremonious speeches can definitely help you establish a professional look, but sadly don't work towards mutual understanding between you and customers.
3. Admit the mistake
Even if it wasn't personally you who screwed up, someone from your company did. Admit the fact and take the responsibility, it works magic in my experience.
4. Thank your customer
Each complaint reveals your competitive disadvantages and potential areas of improvement. So don't forget to thank everyone who makes you better, and tell them about your improvements. Mistakes to avoid
- Apologizing too much (don't overdo it)
- Accusing the customer (won't bring any positive result)
- Making unrealistic promises (how are you going to deliver them?)
- Claiming the issue to be impossible (it already happened)
- Using cliche words and expressions (like "We're sorry for the inconvenience", they sound like "please leave our company be")
- Building a distance between you and the problem (never blame global warming and alien forces for your mistake)
Here are some templates of touching apologies you can adapt to your business
, would you have a peek?