When was the last time you told your customers “Thank you?” All relationships atrophy, so if you’re not sharing gratitude for the business your customers send, the chances are at some point they will be vulnerable to encroachment by your competitors. Every interaction with every customer should be filled with intentional gratitude for their support of your business. But sometimes just saying “thanks” isn’t enough, so here are some ideas for how you can show your appreciation for your long-term customers to let them know their value.
Six Best Customer Appreciation Suggestions
We know that it costs more to find new customers than it does to keep the old ones. To retain your existing customers, you should work hard at making them feel that you truly appreciate their patronage. It’s a good way to stay top-of-mind without trying to sell anything to your clients.
How can you show your appreciation? Here are 10 suggestions that are low-cost but truly high impact:
- Send a handwritten thank you card. This may sound old school, but the approach is so different in an era where we are inundated with digital messages, that it works. It doesn’t have to be a long message, either, but it is an attention grabber. If you have downtime in the business, you could have your staff even write these for you. (This is helpful if you have hundreds of customers.) Or, if you have a handful of very high-value customers, take the time to write these while you’re sitting in front of the TV at night. Make the message heartfelt and sincere, and it will help build a relationship with the customers you value.
- Notice when a customer is particularly easy to work with, and thank them. If you have staff answering the phones, teach them to do the same. It’s so easy these days to share a negative experience with a customer when people are stressed, time-tapped, or otherwise struggling. Reinforce the value of the customers who are kind to your team, or are otherwise easy to deal with.
- Offer a free service, a discount, or a coupon, during a challenging time or just to show customer appreciation. You could record a simple message even from your phone, and email it to your clients with a coupon code. This not only entices an existing customer to remain engaged in your business, it shares with them your appreciation of their prior purchases.
- Offer random acts of kindness to your customers. For example, you could reward the 50th customer each day by giving them a freebie. Or, you could print up bumper stickers and offer them as free swag to paying customers. For large customers, why not give them a personalized gift basket as a thank you for a big sale.
- Host a customer appreciation week or month. This could be an annual event where you offer discounts, door prizes, refreshments, and more to show your customers you appreciate their business. This could work well whether you have a storefront business or an online e-commerce site. Everyone likes to be appreciated, so having time set aside to show your thanks, works well to build customer rapport.
- Get to know your customers as part of this process. As your business grows, it’s going to be hard to keep all of your clients in your head. That’s where Exelare can help. We offer digital database software that can help you keep track of your clients, your interactions, and mark important milestones so you never miss them. Talk with our team today about how our tools can help build and maintain relationships with your valuable customer base.