We live in a busy, distracted world. And some days, we let the busyness of work get in the way of the basics of being human. Kindness, gratitude and appreciation never go out of style and are a fundamental requirement of any service business (and all businesses are service businesses at the end of the day). As a business, showing appreciation and gratitude for customers should be second nature!
Sometimes I think what blocks businesses from truly showing appreciation is not knowing when it might be appropriate to say thank you. It’s appropriate every day?—?and from every level. Finding a reason to say thank you to customers can be as easy as picking up a calendar:
- Anniversary of either signing or project completion
- February 14th (you love your customers, right?)
- Thanksgiving (you are grateful for your customers, right?)
- Christmas/Winter Holidays (your customers are a gift, right?)
- New Year’s (you wish them a prosperous year, right?)
Additional non-calendar based reasons for appreciation include actual project completion or a referral to a new customer or lead.
But… what does saying “thank you” look like? Well, your momma likely taught you to write a thank you note after a gift. That still works after the “gift” of being trusted with a business transaction. There are a few types of thank you notes you can write:
The Handwritten Thank You
- Thank you for your business
- Thank you from the CEO
- Thank you for referring us
- Thank you for trusting us
Image via Unsplash
Hate writing? Do a quick video thank you on any of the above!
You need not limit yourself to just a note. If you’d like to expand to other options, you might consider one of my three favorite types of thank you:
1) The Intangible Thank You
- Refer another customer to them
- Invite them to an event where they can meet potential customers
- Write the customer a review (sincere)
- Send the CEO a note about how you liked working with their team lead or their company
These are all ways to saying “thank you” by deepening your relationship with the customer.
2) The Edible Thank You
- Cake pops
- Fruit Baskets
- Snack/gift tower
- Send lunch
You don’t even have to be the baking type! There are plenty of purchase + send options (Harry & David, Edible Bouquets, bake shops, etc.) to make the Edible Thank You easy.
Image by Unsplash
3) The Tangible Thank You (aka “stuff”)
- Gift card (coffee, dinner, etc.)
- Tickets to an event (Ex: Notre Dame football tickets, tickets to see Dave Ramsey, etc.)
- Something useful with your logo (beach bag, power charger, etc.)
- Do something with the customer’s logo (Ex: Do they travel? A carry-on bag with their logo. A design firm sent thank you stamps to customers post design with the customer’s logo. Do they have a small number of customers? Power charger with their logo that they can give to their customers)
If these tangible thank you options all seem a bit generic for the level of personal relationship you have with your customers, thank your customers with something specifically meaningful to them. Perhaps they love wine and might like a winery tour. Perhaps they love quirky socks and might enjoy a subscription to a sock-of-the-month club. The options are limited only by your imagination!
Appreciation and gratitude. Both are deeply meaningful. And while I absolutely adore Thanksgiving, it shouldn’t take a special occasion for you to show appreciation and gratitude for your customers?—?who trust you with their business. Pick a thank you option from the “listicle” above and reach out to one of your customers today!
Comments? You can contact me directly via my ExecRanks profile.
(Originally published on Medium.com 11/7/18.)