The most important words you will ever say to your customers: Thank You!
These two words give us the warm and fuzzies, immediately instil feelings of loyalty, pride and appreciation and generally make us feel really awesome about ourselves.
Thank You could arguably be the most powerful two words you will ever say, write and express to your customers – and why not, your customers are the life-force of your business – but some businesses forget these two simple words that over time could make or break your long-term success!
In this article you’ll learn why saying Thank You to your customers is so important, how to create your own Customer Thank You Strategy plus 10 ways of how you can say Thank You to your customers immediately.
Sound good? Let’s do it!
Why Saying Thank You to your Customers is SO IMPORTANT
If you run a business that relies on customers then you run a business that relies on relationships.
Your aim for your relationships with your customers is to create a base of reciprocity, value and loyalty.
- When you are told you are valued, you feel valued.
- When you’re told you’re appreciated, you feel appreciated.
- When you’re singled out for making a difference in someone’s life or business you feel important.
- When someone says “Thank You” you feel you’ve made a positive contribution to their lives.
By saying “Thank You Maggie!” you’re telling Maggie she is valuable, she is appreciated, her loyalty is important to you and she’s made an impact in your business.
Imagine how Maggie feels when someone asks her about how your business has changed her life?
Pretty amazing right!?
Think about this…
- 70% of buying experiences are based on how the customer feels they are being treated. Source: McKinsey
- On average, loyal customers are worth up to 10 times as much as their first purchase. Source: White House Office of Consumer Affairs
- When it comes to sales, the probability of selling to an existing happy customer is up to 14x higher than the probability of selling to a new customer. Source: Marketing Metrics
So saying Thank You is not only a positive, polite and joyful, it can affect your business in a few massive ways and help to grow a strong and loyal customer base.
In markets flooded with options and competitors, by installing an attitude of gratitude in your business and working on a Customer Thank You Strategy you will:
- Give back to the very people that are helping you grow your business
- Help you and your business to stand out against your competitors
- Nurture and grow strong customer relationships
- Add an extra layer of personalisation to your customer’s experience
- Create a lasting impression that enhances customer loyalty
- Build raving fans in your loved-up community
- AND live into your Heart-Centered Business intentions!
Quick Tip: When You Say Thank You – Really Mean It
Your customers are the life-force of your business; they pay your bills, they give you the freedom to live the lifestyle you desire, they are the living, breathing embodiment of all your heart-felt intentions in the world, they are using your products and buying your programs and valuing your services – how amazing!
Customer relationships is at the core of any Heart-Centered Business and The 7 Heart-Centered Business Essentials all revolve around your customers, the experience and the results you create for them.
So when you say Thank You – mean it and please treat your customers like the awesome extra special important people that they are.
“The only people with whom you should try to get even are those who have helped you.” – John E Southard
How to Create Your Customer Thank You Strategy
Quick question: Are you working to a Customer Thank You Strategy?
– It’s ok if you’re not, we’re going to change that! –
You may have been awesome at giving thanks early on in your business days and it’s slipped by the wayside.
You might be so busy with everything else in your business that saying Thank You is way down the priority list.
You might not really know how or when to say Thank You to your customers!
You might say Thank You occasionally, but there is no system in place and you know a lot of customers miss out.
Either way, you now know why it’s so important to say Thank You and you’re ready to create an amazing Customer Thank You Strategy that has your customers completely loved up!
The first step to any strategy – planning.
Here’s a quick planning method for any strategy or project. Ask yourself the following questions, taking a few minutes each to answer them:
- Where are we right now?
- What resources do we have to work with?
- Where do we want to be?
- What are the steps or mini-milestones to get there?
- Who is in charge of driving this project?
Once you have answered these questions around your Customer Thank You Strategy and you’re really clear on what currently exists in your business around saying Thank You and what you’d love to see happen for each customers – then you can start to implement some Thank You ideas, adding your own flavour and uniqueness.
Saying Thank You has never felt so good!
“The roots of all goodness lie in the soil of appreciation for goodness.” –Dalai Lama
Here are 10 ways you can say Thank You to your customers right now:
1. Personally write a handwritten note or letter to your customers
Don’t underestimate the value of a handwritten thank you note!
Receiving something (other than a bill) in the mail is a rarity in this day and age so imagine the joy and surprise when your customer receives a special hand written note from you.
The note is not about an upcoming special sale or program or service you’re launching – it’s about them, their relationship with you so far, what they’ve just experienced with you (a program, service or course), how grateful you are for their loyalty and how much you appreciate them in your business and life.
If your customers purchase physical products which you ship to them, this is a no-brainer – you can include a Thank You note in their shipment. You’ll already have their address so there’s no excuse not to send a follow up Thank You note in a few weeks or months.
Quick Tip: This is one area where you can include some whimsy, quirkiness and stand out even more.
2. Pick up the phone and talk to your customers
Nothing goes past good old fashioned person to person connection so pick up the phone and say Thank You!
If your customer just signed a big contract with you, if they’re just signed up to a coaching program, if they’ve just booked you for a special event – whatever action they’ve just taken, reward that action and give thanks.
The aim of the call is a quick ‘just wanted to say thank you so much’ and while you’re on the phone with them make a special point of focusing on them (not you) and keeping it short.
Quick Tip: This is a great strategy for the end of year when you can do a reconciliation of your top 10 – 20 customers for the year and give them a call to say “thank you for being such a big part of my year” wish them an awesome end to their year and let them know you’re there for them should they need you in the new year.
By ‘physical’ I mean something tangible which they can touch, use and keep.
This strategy is a two-parter.
One, you are finding something physical that will provide more education, entertainment or enlightenment.
Two, you are sending it to them free of charge, as a surprise.
You don’t need to make physical products yourself to use this strategy. Say you’re a graphic designer and your customer has just signed up for a decent design package with you and you want to send them something you know they’ll love.
Now because you know your ideal customer and they’ve told you about how much they enjoy homewares and interior design, you have found a book about styling that you know they will showcase on their coffee table and flick through randomly for inspiration when they need it.
You’re going to send it to them, with a simple handwritten note inside it saying ‘I knew you would love this and wanted you to have it! Enjoy & thank you for being a part of my community!’ and they are going to jump for joy because who doesn’t love receiving presents – and you’ve taken the time to send something meaningful and personal.
Quick Tip: Another idea that you can use your personal uniqueness to send them something really different or unusual. We can pretty much order and ship anything these days, so don’t be afraid to let your creative spirit shine!
4. Buy your customers a coffee
If you provide services in a local area or you happen to live close to your customers or VIP customers, invite them to have a coffee with you. Not only is this a chance for you to connect face to face with your customer it’s a chance for them to share a little more about their journey, their struggles and their business.
Now for some bosses this is a strategy that just won’t work logistically, so you could always send them a voucher to a local coffee shop in their area with a note saying ‘coffee on me’ or if you thousands of clients and it’s not physically possible to send it to everyone, you can randomly chose 10 customers a month to send out a voucher to.
If coffee doesn’t work you can make it a movie ticket or a floristry voucher, whatever works for your ideal audience – the point is you’re providing something to them to say Thank You and reward them for their loyalty.
Pppssstttt: if you live on the Gold Coast in Australia, Sydney in Australia or New York in the US, let me know because I’m often traveling between all three and would love to buy you a coffee and talk everything about Heart-Centered Business!
5. Create a VIP Event for your VIP customers
Most people love to be invited to events, especially if they’re free of charge and all about honouring them!
Again this comes down to knowing your ideal customer really well, but psychologically most of us crave connection and community – we’re social creatures.
So by hosting an event for your customers, especially your VIP customers you can create massive amounts of connection and appreciation.
By creating an intimate event intentionally for the reason of being able to give back to your customers, you’re showing them that you are grateful for their relationship and you’re doing everything you can to provide the best possible experience for them.
Quick tip: Give your customers plenty of notice, send a proper invitation where you can highlight that you’ve intentionally created this event to ensure they are receiving x, y, z what that means for them, and explain they are the only ones to receive this very special invitation.
6. A personal, heart-felt email
Write a 2-3 sentence email from you to a customer saying how much you appreciate them in your life and your business.
This is not sent from a crm or email system, this is a personal email from you to them so be specific about the exact way they’ve added value to your business and clearly outline what you would like to Thank them for you.
Share a part of your story or a part of their specific interaction with you. The more you can share with them, in a professional way, the better.
For example, if you’re a wedding photographer you can send an email like this one:
“Maggie I wanted to let you know just how much your business means to me!
The day you decided I was going to be the photographer for your wedding was a massive day for me as you became the 50th Bride to book me and it was a personal achievement of mine to reach that milestone. It also meant I had the pleasure to work with you on the most special day of your life – and what a day it was!
Thank You Maggie for allowing me to a part of your wedding and capture some beautiful memories for you – you’re the reason I do what I do”.
Simple. Effective. Brilliant.
Quick Tip: It’s these little touch points that will keep your customers feeling the love, feeling valued and feeling appreciated.
Remember, customers are the life-force of your business! Your business lives and breathes on the quality, quantity and loyalty of your customers.
7. Publicly declare your Thanks to your customers!
Imagine your customer waking up being tagged in a heartfelt post thanking them for their personal contribution to your community.
Talk about swelling pride, warm and fuzzy feelings and loyalty!
By showing your appreciation and thanks on your social media you’re singling your customers out and letting your community – and their community – know that you value them and the relationship you have with them.
In our current social media bubble where online communities are thriving, this could mean a lot to your customer. It also showcases to the other customers in your community that you value and respect the people you work with.
“The deepest craving of human nature is the need to be appreciated.” –William James
There is an awesome motivation which comes with new beginnings. When a customer first starts a relationship with you they’re usually ready for change and growth, happy with their decision and open to any and all information from you – but you must act on that feeling!
If your customer has just signed up to a specific program or product that has a start date and an end date, be sure to ‘bookend’ your customer experience with any programs, services or packages with congratulations packs for beginnings and congratulations packs for endings.
Micah Solomon, President of Four Aces Inc. and contributor at Forbes.com says: “The end, as much as the beginning, is a moment in time that psychological research show will linger in the memory of your customer: it can have a real effect on how customers view your company in days and months to come”.
This is especially important if part of your business plan is to create repeat customers and retain more of the customers you love!
Quick Tip: When a customer finishes a program with you it shouldn’t mean that you disappear from their lives all together – and it doesn’t mean that they will disappear from yours. If you’re coach or consultant you might find that one customer will take up another program, or the same program in a year’s time, so maintain the relationship!
9. A holiday gift for your customers
The holidays can be rough for some of your customers.
With a lot of extra bills, expenses, travel, stresses and end of year business activities, receiving a special card or gift around the holiday’s could be the refreshing Thank You your customer needs!
Try to make the gift personal and related to your business mission or core message. So if you’re a mindset coach who is passionate about self-care, maybe a self-care pack for your customers.
If you’re a wedding planner, maybe a bottle of wine to toast the year ahead/behind where your customer/s was married with your help.
If you own a yoga studio maybe send a meditation CD or new yoga mat!
If your ideal customer is incredibly charitable and cares deeply for the world, the impact they create and the good they can do maybe make a charitable gift in their name and let them know.
Quick Tip: Don’t forget experiences, try to shop local and think creatively.
If you’re a coach, consultant or freelancer this is an especially good strategy!
Over the course of any coaching or mentoring program you will get to learn very personal, intimate information about your customers. This is part of that very special relationship between a mentor and a mentee and you will learn what matters to them, what makes them tick, what they personally value.
So if over the course of your relationship you have discovered that they really enjoy burning candles as they write; send them a special candle.
If your customer has mentioned having fresh flowers in their house makes them happy; send them a bunch of flowers.
If you know they are stressed and have trouble carving out personal time; send them a pack of bath salts and a reminder that self-care is important!
If your customer loves travel and put a $50 travel voucher in the mail and a note saying ‘here’s a start on your next adventure’.
You get the drift…
These personal touches will not only strengthen your relationship with your customers it will reinforce the message that you genuinely care for them, you are there to help them, you value them and you appreciate them.
You might be looking at these 10 Tips and be thinking “they all cost money” and I’m going to let you in on a personal opinion of mine:
The money you spend on enhancing your relationship with your customers will be the best money you spend in your business.
I really, absolutely, 100% believe that.
Whilst there is no hard and fast rule about dollar amount invested by your customer vs the dollar amount of the thanks you give, it is all about reciprocity.
What I mean by that is, if a customer has just signed up to a $10,000 coaching program and you send them a $5 coffee voucher to a local cafe, it’s kind of a ‘why bother’.
However if you send them a personalised welcome pack to the program with a bottle of Champagne and a few other goodies to get them started, this is going to resonate with your customer in a more powerful way, create more of an impact and add a ton of value to their customer experience.
Similarly, if your customer has just spent $20 on an ebook and you send them a handwritten card which cost $5 then spent $5 on postage, then half your revenue is out the door and you’re losing cash.
It’s all about balance.
For the Heart-Centered Bosses who are also awesome at keeping your eye on the cash, the cash flow and the dollars and cents (god bless you!) you’ll know that customer gifts are usually tax deductible, so keep the receipts and claim them at tax time.
Also – plan for that expense by allocating a percentage of your income to your Customer Thank You Strategy, embrace being able to give back, give thanks and show your customers how much you appreciate them and live into all those Heart-Centered intentions I know you possess.
Your Customer Thank You Strategy is not a ‘maybe one day’ strategy – it’s a here and right now strategy, so I hope these 10 ideas have helped and sparked some ideas on how you can say Thank You to your customers immediately.
Let me know in the comments what your Customer Thank You Strategy looks like right now or which of these 10 ideas you’re going to implement in your business today.