As a customer, when is the last time a small business (or any sized business for that matter) reached out to you to thank you for your patronage?
As a small business owner, when is the last time you reached out to thank your customers for giving you a chance to work with them--something more than a “Thank You for Shopping with Us” sign over your front door?
If it happens at all, I’m guessing you’d agree that it doesn’t happen enough.
For whatever reason, it seems we only realize how often something isn’t happening once that “something” actually does happen. At least that was the case when I received a “thank you” letter in the mail from Quality Gardens, a local greenhouse that had done some landscaping work for me just about a year ago.
I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised to hear from them and found their letter a nice change of pace from the email blasts I typically receive from other businesses.
From a marketing standpoint, the thank you letter not only served as nice gesture, but also allowed them to highlight some of their upcoming workshops and offer their customers a free plant as a small token of their appreciation—both of which are sure to drive folks into their store and increase the chances they’ll buy more stuff.
They also personalized the letter by including my first and last name which is always a nice little touch.
But if you decide to go that route, you just have to go over each and every name with a fine-toothed comb to make sure you have the proper spelling. That way you don’t turn what should be a nice gesture into a negative experience.
I know I’m a sucker for an actual handwritten signature—something most people don’t even do these days when they send out holiday cards to family members. But still, I think that always seems to go along way when trying to establish that personal touch.
As small business owners, we spend so much of our time and energy trying to win new customers that we can sometimes forget about the customers who matter the most—the folks with whom we’ve already done business.
How do you say "thanks" to your best customers?
Share your thoughts in the comments below.
By: Shawn Graham
[Image: Flickr user barrera_marquez2003]