This is a guest post from Jeanne Bliss — customer experience expert and author of “I Love You More Than My Dog.” See the original post this is adapted from and more like it on her blog.

Companies that are beloved don’t take apologizing as admitting defeat.

It’s part of the journey toward becoming a better company.

Apologizing well for operational gaffes, service blunders, and widespread missteps drives company prosperity because these apologies, when done well, strengthen the bond between customer and company. The apology defines the people inside the company, their values, and who they are.

In a thoughtful and well-executed apology, the focus is on the people impacted and the human connection with them.

It is all about restoring and preserving the relationship.

Customers feel they have been honored and acknowledged. Companies continue to prosper. These solutions appeal to the natural order of humanity. They become a peace process where both sides win.

The apology peace process between companies and customers is comprised of five actions that signal to customers that they are important and that someone is looking after them:

  1. Deliver a swift response.
  2. Show humility and empathy for what the customer is experiencing.
  3. Accept accountability.
  4. Provide an honest explanation of what happened and a commitment to improve.
  5. Extend an olive branch—to right the situation and mend the relationship.

About Jeanne Bliss

As “Chief Customer Officer” for Lands’ End, Mazda, Coldwell Banker, Allstate, and Microsoft, Jeanne got “customer” on the strategic agenda, earned 98% loyalty rates, and changed experiences across 50,000-person operations. Jeanne now runs CustomerBliss to create an actionable path for profitability and business growth -- through earning customer and employee raves. Her best-selling books are Chief Customer Officer and I Love You More than My Dog: Five Decisions that Drive

Tags: , , , ,

Comments are closed.

Featured Downloads

Download: “The Difference Map” by Bernadette Jiwa

We’re big fans of author of The Fortune Cookie Principle and TEDx speaker Bernadette Jiwa, who says that good marketing…

Read More

The first chapter of “The Social Media Side Door” by Ian Greenleigh

Ian reveals the best ways to earn the attention of influential people using social media channels.

Read More

9 Things to Share That Start Conversations

Use the examples in this guide to help inspire ways to make your message more portable and shareable.

Read More

3 Must-Use Word of Mouth Marketing Tools

These tools will help you kick off any word of mouth campaign no matter what topic, industry, or budget.

Read More

The Top Four Tips for Multiplying Your Word of Mouth

These tips can help you get your marketing to do more work without a lot of extra effort.

Read More

10 Ways to Turn Around Negative Word of Mouth

The most effective ways to stop negative WOM with examples from Zappos, FedEx, Dell, and more.

Read More
Get our free weekly newsletter

Join 35,000 brilliant word of mouth marketers by signing up for our free weekly email newsletter filled with actionable word of mouth ideas.

You’ll be blown away by just how good you can be at this.

Never display this again