When considering an eMarketing strategy you need to remember to still use proven methods of offline marketing. The combination of the two is where you get the maximum return on your efforts. Friends of mine, Lee & Christine have built there business Customer Love around thanking your customers and partners and keeping the personal connection with them. Their article below highlights how powerful this can be.

Written by Lee Clark and Christine Parker, Directors of Customer Love Pty Ltd – www.customerlove.com.au

Why do we generally only send a thank you note after we have received a present after a party or wedding? Naturally we should, after all it’s good manners, and that’s how we’ve been raised.  But why don’t the majority of people do it in business? We receive a present worth $100 – we send a card. We receive a client contract worth $1,000 – yet we generally don’t put pen to paper and say thank you – we’re too busy, and more often than not, think “an email will do”.

Seriously, when was the last time you received a card from a business associate? It may have been so long ago you can’t remember. If you have received one, chances are you remember exactly who it was from, when and why you received it. It may even be still sitting on your desk, proudly on display.

The art of sending a handwritten card in business has almost been lost. Yet it is one of the most powerful ways of making an emotional connection with your customer to build lasting relationships.

Here are 10 useful tips on how and why sending handwritten cards in your business will build better relationships with your clients:

  1. When we’re busy, and we all are – it’s easy to send a generic typed note on company letterhead or an email that has been pre-drafted. But how effective is it really? Millions of this type of communication is going around the world daily, achieving little in the way of impact.  When you send a handwritten greeting card, you will be remembered especially if you do it in a way that shows you really care.
  2. It’s important in business to stand out, make an impact and create an experience with each and every customer.  Just think, when a client or prospect looks at their mail, the first thing they will do is sort between bills, letters, and junk mail. If they receive a brightly coloured envelope that has been hand written from YOU, it will either be opened first in excitement and anticipation or last, to be savoured, and enjoyed. You will be remembered.
  3. When dealing with clients it is important that you make each individual  contact feel that they are the most important person to you. Even though  most clients understand that you have other clients, they want to feel like  they are the most important.
  4. Even if you don't win that contract or get the business you hoped for, send  a thank you card anyway.  Maybe the successful provider will fail to  deliver. Your potential client will no doubt remember your thoughtfulness.
  5. Carry blank greeting cards and stamps in your diary or briefcase.  After  leaving a client’s office, take a moment to write a short “thank you for your  time” card and drop it in the mail on the way back to your office.
  6. Business is often done with people who take the time to acknowledge  them. When you read the newspaper, or articles in email newsletters,  send a card to congratulate people on their successes, whether you know  them or not.
  7. Develop the habit of allocating a set time each week (or every day) to  write your cards. These would include following up from networking  functions attended, birthday cards, thank you cards etc.  Ask any person  who is number 1 in their profession, and they will tell you how important it  is to create this habit.
  8. When writing cards, make them personal, it’s the little things that count.  Include reference to a planned holiday, or something you discussed.  And  don’t worry about your hand writing, people will appreciate the effort you  have gone to.
  9. “Thank you” are two very powerful words that are always appreciated.  Remember the people within your network who have given you  information,  advice, assistance or some precious time. Sending them a  card to say thank you, will certainly put a smile on their face and feel  appreciated.
  10. Keep in touch with all your clients and prospects, even if they don’t need  you right now. Make sure they remember you! You never know when they  will need you, who they know and when they will recommend you.
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