‘Tis the season to give thanks. As you gather around the table this Thanksgiving and share what you’re most thankful for, consider adding this one to your list: your customers. Showing gratitude humanizes your brand and makes it easier for people to connect with you. Gratitude is truly the best marketing plan you can have. And we’re here to tell you the 4 reasons why that is!
1. Drives Customer Loyalty
Who doesn’t love to be appreciated? When you show gratitude towards your customers for their business, they’re likely to return in the future. Sometimes, all it takes is a simple “thank you” and a smile. You’d be surprised at how many businesses don’t thank their customers after a purchase, and treat the relationship like nothing more than a transaction. When customers are loyal, they are more likely to return in the future and refer their friends and family.
2. Develops More Meaningful Relationships
No matter what business you’re in, having relationships with your customers is important. As we mentioned above, if you want to keep customers coming back, you’ll likely want to have a relationship beyond just the transaction. People need to be able to trust that you have their best interests at heart, and that you appreciate them for their business. Being grateful and displaying that gratitude to their face will help you develop stronger bonds with them and build a sense of community.
3. Helps You Engage and Connect With Others
Get to know your customers on a personal, deeper level. By asking them their birthday, anniversary, and email at check-out, you can get to know them better. This allows you to be able to send them gifts on their birthday, maybe a discount of some sort, or a gift card. Since you have their email, and as long as they’ve opted in to receive emails from you, you can even send them well wishes on major holidays like Christmas or Thanksgiving.
4. Builds Trust With Your Customers
If you want to build trust with your customers, you have to be authentic. Be yourself during every interaction, and watch your relationships with those customers flourish. A lot of times, customers remember the interactions they’ve had with businesses, not the discounts they had and not the coupon codes (or lack of). If they trust you, they will likely continue to come back time and time again over your competition, even if your competition has a major sale going on.
How To Show Gratitude In Your Marketing Efforts
Now that we know how important gratitude is, and why it is the best marketing plan you can have, let’s dive in to how you can show gratitude in your marketing efforts.
1. Say Thank You
As we mentioned above briefly, sometimes all it takes is a simple thank you. Make sure you say it before the customer has a chance to say it, so it sounds more genuine and not something that you feel you have to say. A thank you, a smile, and eye contact can go a long way.
2. Write Handwritten Notes
After a purchase, consider writing them a handwritten note if you have their address. The handwritten note is more thoughtful and personal than an email or a text that you send to every customer. A handwritten note is more unique and personal. It’s a great way to show your customer that you care about them. The note can even be short and sweet. “Thank you for your business, we hope you enjoy your new ____.”
3. Referral Programs
Consider having a referral program. Every time a customer refers your business to a family member or a friend that ends up doing business with you, send them something. Whether it be a discount on a future purchase or a gift card to the local coffee shop in town, showing appreciation for the business they just gave you will go a long way.
4. Respond To Reviews
Anytime someone leaves you a review, respond to it – even if it’s negative. It shows that you’re listening and paying attention. Thank them anyways and tell them you appreciate their business, before offering to do what you need to do to make it right. Even if that customer doesn’t want to come back to your business in the future, it shows others online that you handle issues and customer service is your top priority.
5. Interact With Them On Social Media
Anytime someone writes a comment, tags you in a post, replies to your Story, respond to them. Interact with your customers online. This can help you learn more about your target adueince and how to better connect with them on a personal level.
6. Ask Questions
Criticism isn’t always fun, and it can be hard to receive about your business. Your pride and joy. However, asking questions to your customers like “How’d we do today? Is there something I could have done better?” is a great way to find out what customers are looking for, what they’d like to see more or less of, and what they liked or didn’t like about the transaction. You can even have polls going on your social media platforms that asks customers to offer up suggestions to help improve your business. Take every comment, good and bad, into heartfelt consideration.
Customers are the heart of your business and keep it thriving and growing. That’s why it’s so important to show gratitude in any way that works for you. Whether you want to simply just say thank you and smile, or send gifts or personalized letters to the home, your gratitude will not go unnoticed.