5 Magic Words to Get Customer Service to Do Your Bidding

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I CAN’T DOWNLOAD THIS!!! I’VE TRIED 3 TIMES AND IT’S NOT WORKING YOU DICKHEAD FIX THIS OR ELSE!!!!!!!!!  (support request received this morning)

Do you have a support desk in your business? Then you know how difficult some folks can be when they want what they want NOW.

Like maybe your customers are having a contest on to see who can use the most exclamation marks. (For every exclamation mark beyond the first one in any message, my estimation of that person’s IQ drops by about 5 points. And I’m not alone in this assessment, either.)

Harsh but true.

Name calling? Don’t get me started.

But this isn’t for marketers running support desks so much as it’s for everyone who has ever written a support ticket, email and so forth seeking help from customer service.

I know when we’re having a problem (I can’t find the link! This isn’t working for me! It won’t load!) We want help and we want it now.

And that’s why we’re sometime rude (we don’t mean to be!) and we even SHOUT AT THE ANONYMOUS CUSTOMER SERVICE PERSON BECAUSE WE’RE SO FRUSTRATED!

Being shouted at is not fun.

And yes, if there is ANYONE on the planet reading this who still doesn’t understand that a full sentence or paragraph of all caps is shouting, well, now you know.

Imagine walking up to the customer service desk at your local store and SCREAMING at the clerk.

Do you really think you’re going to get the best service that way?


Do it in a restaurant and I can about guarantee people in the kitchen will be dropping your food on the floor (whoopsie!) or spitting into it.

No one wants to be yelled at.

So how then do we get the best customer service possible when we’re frustrated, annoyed, having a bad day and so forth?

By taking the advice every good mother gives to her children – be polite.

Even though you are writing an email or filling out a support ticket, you are talking to a real life human being with emotions, challenges and difficulties of their own. This person wants to help you. They want you to have a good outcome. But most of all they want to be treated with respect and politeness.

Respect for others

It’s something we seem to be losing.

It’s too easy for trolls to scream at each other on the internet. And sadly, trolls beget trolls, until we are all yelling and no one is listening.

I’ve had my moments when I was so frustrated, I could have spit bullets. Here’s how I contact customer service when that happens:

I write what’s on my mind but I do NOT send it.

I take a few breaths.

I read what I wrote.

I feel shocked and horrified by my own words.

I delete the message.

And then I write it again, using words like “please” and “thank you” and “I really appreciate your help with this” and then “thank you” again.

And it works like magic.

I’ve found that people will bend over backwards to help me get what I want when I use this tone in my support requests.

Those six magic words are:

  • Please – Please help me with this
  • Thank you – thank you so much for your assistance
  • I appreciate – I appreciate your product, your support, your help, your insight, your… Just let the person know you appreciate them and their efforts, even if it’s not going as smoothly as you would like.

Here’s that support request I received this morning:


Here’s how the support request might have been written:

Hi, this is Ann Ralphie, I purchased XYZ product and I need your help, please. I’m having trouble downloading. Here’s what I did (tell them what you did so they can help you spot the problem). I really appreciate your blog, I enjoy your insights and I can’t wait to read the book when I get it downloaded. Thank you so very much for your help in this. Kindest, Ann Ralphie

Which one do you think will get a better response?

Rushed for time? CLICK HERE to download
this post as PDF to read at your leisure


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