I subscribe to the newsletter over at ChristianPF (the PF stands for Personal Finance), and while I always find the information to be enlightening – occasionally I find an idea that translates as well in business as it does at home.
Recently, they published a post called ‘9 Creative Ways to Say Thank You.’ As I was reading the post, I thought – now this is what I’m talking about!
The guys at ChristianPF pointed out that the “Thank You” is endangered:
“Sadly, a genuine thank you is hard to come by these days. The good news is that since they are becoming more of a rare occasion, it just makes you look that much better when you give one. “
I couldn’t agree more! Believe it or not, it’s EASY to spend a couple hundred thousand on marketing! What’s not as easy is to consistently make a personalized effort to make your clients feel like family. You don’t have to spend a million dollars – or even a couple hundred thousand – to stand out to clients and prospects. The devil is in the details.
I recommend coming up with a process for thanking your clients when they do something you appreciate – like giving referrals or making a large purchase. Be consistent – get into a groove of flagging desirable behaviors and rewarding them promptly! The element of surprise will work in your favor – they won’t be expecting recognition because it’s not the norm in this day and age – so you will stand out favorably in their minds. Subconsciously this fosters loyalty from your clients – they recognize that you care about them, so they feel compelled to care about you and your business. Now that’s good branding!
Here are a couple of ways you can make your clients feel like one in a million:
- Thank you note – A simple hand-written thank you note will stand out among the hordes of computer generated mail they receive each day.
- Treats – People love goodies – and goodies with your name on them will leave a sweet taste in your clients’ mouth when they think of your business! A box of donuts or a tin of cookies will do the trick – be sure to include a card or stamp with your business name on it, so they know where it came from.
- Flowers – a simple floral arrangement is an inexpensive way to show appreciation for a referral or an extra-large purchase. It’s also uncommon – so you it boosts your top-of-mind-awareness.
- Invitation to a special event – Throw a special event for A-list clients or customers. It doesn’t have to be a large event – a simple cocktail hour or wine tasting with appetizers would do the trick. Even better – how about an Ice Cream Social? Invite all the people who have referred their friends to you throughout the year, and see if you don’t get some additional referrals from those guests. Advertise the event to all of your customers to increase referrals as well!
- Send a gift card – A $10, $25 or $50 gift card to a local restaurant, or even just a Visa gift card, will leave a memorable impression, and encourage desirable behavior. Couple that with a hand-written thank you card explaining what the gift is for, and not only does your client feel appreciated, they want to do whatever they did to get the gift again!
Again – you don’t have to have a large bank account to make your customers feel special. The idea is to build solid relationships with your patrons, so they feel a greater connection to you, and are less likely to be swept away by your competition. A side bonus is that they will tell their friends about their awesome (accountant, plumber, hair stylist, etc), who really made them feel great by expressing a little gratitude. In today’s computer generated global economy, it’s important to stay up to date on technology, but don’t let your client relationships get lost in the pixels.
Need more tips on building relationships with your clients? Head over to www.candeoagency.com, or call us at 623-414-6082.
Until next time!