Complaints Letter Format
Complaint letters are not always fun, but sometimes they have to be written. In many cases, when people are not complaining, the guilty problem agency (ie the company or the government) will not even know that the problem you and others have experienced exists at all.
Ultimately, legitimate complaints from just a few people can (and often do) lead to better service for all. In addition, the writing of letters of complaint can also be of personal benefit!
Correctly. Writing complaint letters can be a strengthening and therapeutic experience! It allows one to take action rather than playing the role of a victim and “nurturing” a persistent resentment against a company for poor service or treatment. As soon as the complaint letter is written and “let go” in the mail, one can know that one has done something tangible and constructive about the situation.
Not only that, but also properly written and processed complaints letters are put into action!
After I started writing complaint letters, I received friendly apology and remorse from senior executives, including bank vice presidents and marketing vice presidents for giant corporations.
It felt so much better to get them by mail than to “polish” a lingering resentment and, the next time something bad happened, get even more angry. Sometimes I even get discount vouchers and free stuff!
THE 10 SECRETS
Here are some strategies I have learned to write letters to receive attention and action.
1. Write to the responsible elderly person
It is important that you receive the name and detailed mailing address of a very experienced person who is responsible for the product or service that you are complaining about. I generally try to the V.-P. Level. Never fall short of the Director level if you want a serious answer. For information about your name and address, visit the company’s Web site or call the company and ask for the name and title of the older person you should write to.
2. Do not send an e-mail
If you send a serious letter of complaint to a company or the government, do not send e-mail, regardless of what is posted on the website. Emails are typically treated by employees with low levels of customer service. If you want serious attention and action, the only way is the formal written complaint letter. When it arrives at the vice president’s office (yes, by mail!), It triggers a bureaucratic process that ensures the right people see your letter and respond to it.
3. Keep it as short as possible
Preferably not more than one page, at most two. Writing a letter of complaint may tend to go further, just to make sure the recipient receives the point. Keep it as short as possible without diluting the facts of your message too much.
4. Enter a heading for identification
Place a header with information that the company or agency refers to, such as: For example, your account number or customer number, at the top of the letter. Make it easy for them to find you on their computer archiving system.
5. Explain the situation clearly
Make sure you provide all the details required for the company or agency to verify your claim without having to engage in an endless phone game with them. Specify specific dates, times, and locations, as well as the names of the people you’ve studied. If you are not sure when creating the letter, call it back and ask for details. (You do not have to say that this is a letter of complaint).
6. Use a positive and respectful tone
I’ve found that the best approach is to use a positive upbeat tone. Remember, you write to a high-ranking person who probably sympathizes with what happened to you. Your tone should convey the message that you are the innocent victim and you understand that the company did not do it on purpose.
7. Send copies if necessary
There may be instances when it is advisable to send a copy of the letter to other parties to ensure that you take serious action. For example, in a case where you were asked to write to the regional manager of a program, it is often a good idea to make sure that someone at the head office also receives a copy. Sometimes I send a copy to customer service or customer offices at the national level.
8. “shame” them as much as possible
Companies that demand and promote a high level of customer orientation and service do not want to be criticized in these areas. If you have a strong argument that makes them vulnerable in one of these areas, use as much ammo as possible to embarrass them in those sensitive areas. Modern marketing terms such as Customer Relationship Management (CRM), One-to-One Marketing, Most Value Customer (MVC) and customer-centered focus tend to get their attention. When you use such terms, you also sound like an authority.
9. Make sure you could move your business elsewhere
I always do that near graduation. Companies do not like to lose customers, especially long-term customers. Experienced marketing experts know that recruiting a new customer costs five to seven times as much as binding to an existing customer.
10. Ask for an early reply
In the last paragraph of your letter of complaint, state that you expect an early reply. Make sure you follow up by phone or e-mail if you have not heard anything within three weeks. Some companies will send you a confirmation letter stating that they are working on your case and will get back to you within a week or two.