Cement Stronger Customer Relationships By Following The Confirmation Letter ABC’s

    June 25, 2002

As more entrepreneurs enter into online commerce, many make a common mistake: they get so involved with the technology that they forget that there’s a live person on the other side of the computer screen. They forget that they’re dealing with PEOPLE.

As a result, the Internet has begun to get a reputation for being cold…lacking in the personal touch. And it’s this personal touch that forges a strong customer bond. Ignore this and you may find your customers drifting over to your competition.

You must give them a reason to stay loyal!

Did you know that sixty-eight (68) percent of customers who quit buying from a company do so because they feel that the company doesn’t care about them? Just their wallets?

And never assume that since you don’t hear any complaints that all is well. Of the above mentioned sixty-eight percent, 96% will not let you know how they’re feeling…they’ll just disappear.

And though they wouldn’t tell you, rest assured that they’ll probably tell their friends – statistically, one person usually shares a bad experience with nine other people. And 13% will even take this one step further – spreading the bad experience to 20 or more.

Can you see, by not reinforcing customer satisfaction and loyalty, that this could become a costly business mistake?

Savvy marketers make sure to establish this human connection early…one of the easiest (though often overlooked) tools to launch a strong relationship is a well-executed order confirmation message.

A well-planned confirmation message is often the first contact a merchant makes with a customer after the initial sales letter. It doesn’t have to be elaborate…just make sure you’re not missing the basics.

For instance, does your message hit the following ABC’s?

A – (A)cknowledge Their Positive Action.

By instantly reinforcing their wise decision to purchase your product, you may be able to head off a number of cases of ‘buyers remorse,’ thus cutting down on refunds.

With ezine signups, by sending a confirmation message, you’re reminding a prospect that they’d requested the information. Often subscribers forget that they’ve signed up. Or, someone may have signed them up without their knowledge or approval – a confirmation message notifies them of the action.

Some ezine publishers are using their confirmation message to set up a double opt-in, requiring a new subscriber to physically respond that they wanted the subscription. Done by requiring a return email or click through, this has become an effective way to offset spam complaints and unauthorized sign-ups.

B – (B)enefits They’ll Receive From Their Purchase or Free Subscription

After a transaction, the confirmation letter should reiterate the benefits of signing up or purchasing a service or product. Reinforce this positive action by reminding a customer of the value they will be receiving (this also underscores their perception of you as a quality merchant).

C – (C)larifying Terms Of Product Delivery

If the product is digital, and will be delivered sequentially (like an ezine or mini-course) the confirmation letter will remind the customer or prospect how often to expect an installment (daily, weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, quarterly). A gentle reminder makes for good customer relations, and, again, cuts down on potential accusations of spamming.

If the product is available immediately, the confirmation should reconfirm that it is digital, available through instant download, and then give clear instructions on the steps involved. Not everyone is a download veteran; you can’t assume that they’ll know what to do. Head off any potential frustration with step-by-step instructions. To those that need this extra help, you’ll be an instant hero.

By keeping it personal, anticipating requests and questions, and by extending professional courtesy, you will be on the right track to forging a strong online relationship with your customers — ultimately leading to a smoother and more profitable online experience for everyone involved.

Paula Morrow heads up http://www.idealmarketingcorp.com She specializes in
public relations, information marketing and creating cashflow systems. Her
newsletter, IDEALProfits, is now read in 12 countries. Subscribe and receive 5
BONUS ebooks! http://www.Idealmarketingcorp.com/subscribe.html