Use My Name – Especially If You Have it

logo Not too long ago, I got an email from They host my email and every month, they send me a nice email letting me know my credit card has been charged successfully. I’ve never had a problem with the company and know they are a good company. So, like most customers, I only scan these emails looking for phrases like “did not go through”, “unsuccessful”, “we hate you”, etc. None of those were in the email so I pretty much just ignored it.

However, something I did notice was that the beginning of the email said “Dear Customer:” Half way down the email, it listed my name, so they had my name and were able to use it, but the beginning of the email did not use it.

I sent an email to’ head of customer service customer care and he thanked me for the suggestion. I haven’t seen the email for this upcoming month, but hopefully they changed it. Like usual, they accepted my suggestion very gracefully and were appreciative.

However, the point (and not to pick on – lots of companies like and plenty of others don’t frequently customize email greetings for one reason or another) is that if you have information you can use to personalize the customer service experience, use it! The company should consider greetings like:

  • Hi Bob Smith
  • Hello Bob
  • Hello Bob Smith
  • Dear Bob Smith
  • Dear Bob

All of these personalize the email a bit more. The personalized greetings also help instill a bit of confidence in the customer – they like seeing their name – it helps show the email is genuine (PayPal was one of the first to personalize emails for that reason).

Whenever you can, personalize the customer experience. It never hurts. Customers may not notice it concisely, but it all adds up to make a great customer experience.

By the way, a special congratulations to on recently getting acquired by Rackspace as well as making it to the Inc. 500 list. Two great accomplishments for sure.

4 Responses to “Use My Name – Especially If You Have it”

  1. Glenn Ross said:

    Nov 02, 07 at 7:47 pm

    Wouldn’t it be nice if ATM’s greeted us by name after we stuck in our cards? They must think my name is “English or Spanish.”

  2. Service Untitled said:

    Nov 02, 07 at 9:53 pm


    That is so simple and so obvious you wonder why it isn’t done like that. They have your name and can record your language preference after the first use – why can’t they use it! Great point.

  3. Service Untitled » Tailor The Experience - customer service and customer service experience blog said:

    Nov 05, 07 at 7:48 am

    […] Think about it. Do I need to see that I have a balance of $0 every time I login or just when there actually is a balance, or maybe 5 days before and after the billing period? Like Glen said on Friday, why can’t the ATM address us by name and remember our language preference? […]

  4. Service Untitled» Blog Archive » You’re Closer to Reward Travel Than You Think? said:

    Nov 17, 09 at 3:28 pm

    […] mail to) customers, use the data you have to make the emails more intelligent (this relates to a post I wrote about two years ago). The email Continental sent me should have focused on using my account and getting started to earn […]