How to Apologize for Service Issues

I've been giving We Rule a try on my iPhone (username 'chwats'). Recently though, I've been having connection problems, with the game being slow to load and play, and sometimes unavailable. Yes, all online services have issues sometimes, but this was getting ridiculous.

I was just about ready to uninstall it when I received a perfectly timed email from ngmoco, the developer of the game.

It was a great example of how to apologize to your customers for service problems, and frankly, kept me as a customer. Here's why.

Firstly, although I only discovered this once I had read to the bottom, I really appreciated that the email had come directly from ngmoco's CEO, Neil.

I also appreciated his honesty in describing the issues that were causing the connectivity issues:

…we underestimated the number of people that would play the game, the number of social connections that they would have, the number of push messages that would be sent, the number of times that they would play per day and the number of minutes that they would play for.

Simply put, 'we didn't expect the game to be as successful as it's been.'

I liked how the steps to resolve the issues were outlined and the urgency with which they were being implemented:

…we're working around the clock to scale our physical infrastructure and we're also in the process of finishing a new round of changes to both the We Rule and Plus+ servers, as well as an update to the We Rule App…

Lastly, it was heartening to learn that not only were service issues being addressed but new features were also being brought online:

We're going to be rolling out new content on a fairly regular cadence over the course of the game's life and we have enhancements lined up for many many months to come.

As a customer, the first part of this email saved me from leaving and the last part aroused my interest enough to stay around for the foreseeable future in order to see how the game evolves. Nice job, Neil.

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Posted on: May 2, 2010 | No comments

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