As the Thanksgiving holiday approaches here in the United States, we thought it would be a great time to discuss a few different ways you can use language to express your gratitude to customers.
Thanking customers and telling them how much you appreciate them are important parts of the customer’s emotional journey, and it is important to remember that these expressions are only as valuable as they are authentic.
Sure, a team member can occasionally get away with a perfunctory “thank you”; yet, over time, customers can sense when expressions of gratitude aren’t sincere.Customers can sense when expressions of gratitude aren’t sincere. Click To Tweet
As hinted at above, a simple “thanks” can seem perfunctory, even canned, and it can often be helpful to mix up the ways you express gratitude to customers.
As with any communication, context is king. Some phrases and approaches are more appropriate for written communication, others for verbal. The options below are just that, options, which should be deployed in the right circumstances with the right person.
There is nothing wrong with a simple thanks or thank you when speaking with a customer, though for more formal or new interactions thanks can seem a bit casual. Yet, these phrases can be made more powerful by adding some emphasis.
“Thanks so much!”
“A thousand thanks!”
Appreciate is one of the 10 Power Words I wrote about in Be Your Customer’s Hero. Why? Because appreciate sends a powerful, positive message to the listener’s brain. Appreciate also has the advantage of working well both informally and formally.
“We really appreciate you coming in today. Have a great day!”
“We appreciate your business and look forward to seeing you again soon.”
Grateful is a great alternative to appreciate and functions similarly in that it can be used both informally or formally.
“Thank you for letting me explain what happened. I’m truly grateful.”
“We want to express our sincere gratitude for your many years as a loyal customer. To thank you for your loyalty, we have…”
While these words are not expressions of gratitude themselves, they are great setup terms for the words above.
“We wanted to take a moment to acknowledge the experience you just had and to let you know how much we appreciate your patience.”
“We recognize that your last experience fell far short of your expectation, and we want to let you know that we are truly grateful that you have allowed us the opportunity to continue to serve you.”
“We wanted to recognize your many years as a loyal member of our program. To show our appreciation, we would like to invite you to join our…”
While an important word in its own right and another of the 10 Power Words from Be Your Customer’s Hero, understand is also an effective setup word for an expression of gratitude. Every customer wants to be heard, to be understood, and simply using the word understand sends a message to the customer that you have understood them. It is exceptionally powerful in reactive service and when trying to resolve a customer issue.
“I understand how frustrated you must be, and I truly appreciate you taking the time to repeat your story for me.”
“I understand sir — no customer should have to go through that — and I’m truly grateful that you are allowing me the opportunity to resolve this issue for you.”
As we all know, communication is the backbone of Hero-Class® customer service.
Often, a simple “thank you” is enough; sometimes though, we want to express our gratitude more fully. The options above should help you find more ways to thank your customers that will resonate with them emotionally.
To that end, whether this is your first time here or you are a loyal part of the Customers That Stick® community, we know your time and attention is valuable, and we truly appreciate you allowing us to be part of your customer experience journey. Thank you!
Best wishes for a happy Thanksgiving holiday, and we hope that you have much in your life to be grateful for!
By Adam Toporek. Adam Toporek is an internationally recognized customer service expert, keynote speaker, and workshop leader. He is the author of Be Your Customer's Hero: Real-World Tips & Techniques for the Service Front Lines (2015), as well as the founder of the popular Customers That Stick® blog and co-host of the Crack the Customer Code podcast.