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The Power of an Apology

February 7, 2008

 Hey everyone,

Last week I had to do something I hate doing, something I’m not particularly good at, something I probably don’t do often enough…I had to apologize.

I misread a review of one of my novels and, in a fit of self-righteous pique; I posted a response on the reviewer’s blog, stating in no uncertain terms what I thought about it.

The reviewer posted back an equally terse reply, basically telling me to grow up (which, as it turned out, wasn’t such bad advice.)

Once I’d had a chance to calm down, have a cup of coffee, pet the dog, etc, I re-read the original review and, much to my chagrin, realized that I’d misunderstood the writer’s attempt at a bit of humor, and had responded inappropriately.

Actually, even if the reviewer’s comments hadn’t been tongue-in-cheek, I’d still responded inappropriately!

So, striving against my nature, I bit my lip and posted an apology, outlining my misinterpretation, and admitting that, no matter what, my response had been juvenile.

Luckily, this reviewer had a better grasp on his temper (and his sense of professionalism) than I had shown. He accepted my apology, and even went so far as to repost to the review, clarifying that his remark had been satirical.

THEN, he ordered a copy of another novel to review!

Talk about being humbled!

What I could have just left as a whiney, defensive comment for the world to read and judge me by, became an opportunity to create a relationship, garner a new customer, and even get some additional (positive) publicity for my books!

The reason I’m posting this is that I read a great article this morning by my favorite marketing guru, Shel Horowitz. I get Shel’s monthly eNewsletter “Frugal Marketing Tips” and the February issue is titled, “Rebuilding A Business Relationship That Went Bad.”

Shel’s experience mirrored my own so closely that I figured many of us, in the day-to-day mosh-pit of running our own writing business, had probably thrown a few elbows we wish we hadn’t.

I wish I’d read this two weeks ago, lol!

So, take a look at the article and good luck. I’m going to get another cup of coffee and see if I can wash the taste of crow out of my mouth.

Till next time,

-Perry

PS – There’s lot’s of other top-notch info on Shel’s site, and you can sign up for any of his free monthly newsletters there as well. It’d be time well spent!

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2 comments

  1. Hi, Perry,

    I’m totally tickled that I’m your favorite marketing guru! We’ll have to get better acquainted.

    _____
    Shel Horowitz, copywriter and award-winning author of five marketing books – http://www.frugalmarketing.com
    Blogging at http://www.principledprofit.com/good-business-blog/ (intersection of ethics, marketing, sustainability, and politics)
    and
    http://frugalmarketing.com/newsletters (monthly frugal fun, frugal marketing, ethical business, and book marketing newsletters)


  2. Shel,

    I blame myself for not staying it touch more, lol, but we’ve actually spoken several times. ‘Course, I don’t have anywhere near the customer-base that you have, and I sure can’t remember everyone I’VE spoken to!

    I teach classes for “Oregon Christian Writers” based on “Grassroots Marketing.” I think you have a review of mine on your testimonials page.

    -Perk

    PS – Anyone reading this, who’d like to get first rate guide to marketing themselves and their business, “Grassroots Marketing” is THE book!



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