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Vacation autoresponder text

Posted by Michael Bloch in ecommerce (Wednesday August 8, 2007 )

I’ve just finished sending out the latest newsletter for Taming the Beast.net subscribers. It seems quite a few folks are still on holidays according to their autoresponders, lucky them :). There are some risks with letting people know you’re somewhere else having a good time though.

An autoresponder when you’re away is great for informing people that you may not be able to get back to them straight away; but:

a) A stressed out client doesn’t care if you’re away, they just want assistance. In fact, if they have a gripe, telling them you’re on vacation may darken their mood even further.

b) A potential client is likely to go elsewhere

c) Telling people you’re away from your home, particularly if you work from a home office, is an invitation for burglary.

It’s challenging when you need to take time out from your business, especially if you’re a one person show and I’m certainly not saying that you shouldn’t have some sort of automated response if you’re not around, but just to consider your vacation or away autoresponder texts carefully.

If you’re only going to be away for a few days, I suggest something like this should suffice:

“Thanks for contacting me, I’ll follow up with you within 72 hours, sooner if at all possible”

or

“Thanks for contacting me – I just wanted to let you know that there may be a delay of up to X days/hours before you’ll receive a reply from me, if you have an urgent matter that requires immediate attention, etc…”

In your autoresponse, offer alternatives if you can, such as an FAQ or knowledge base page that may help people out of a fix.

It’s the same sort of deal with your voicemail. Instead of:

“Hi, we’re away soaking up some rays and won’t be back until the end of the week, but if you leave your blah blah blah”

use something like…

“I’m sorry I’m not able to take your call at the moment, but if you leave your blah blah blah”

If you’re away and still have access to email, add your email address to the voicemail message.

Related:

Don’t have autoresponder software or an email marketing solution in place? Check out my reviews.



 

 
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