9 Creative Ways to Thank Your Customers This Season

By | 2018-05-07T12:55:12+00:00 November 14th, 2016|Uncategorized|

thank your customersDo you feel like you need to slow down and thank your customers?

Running a small business involves a hectic, crazy schedule. Each day’s agenda is packed full of multiple responsibilities; staffing and managing employees, customer service, business planning, marketing, cash management, and basic bookkeeping, to name just a few.

As we move into this especially thankful time of year, here are a few ideas of ways to reach your customers with a sincere “thanks.”

 

Don’t Give Gifts
This sounds backwards, yes?  I spend most every waking hour at home trying to move things out of my house.  I don’t need things, and I’m guessing I’m a target profile shopper for many small businesses (working mom, middle-aged, non-hoarder, suburban….).  What do I need?  Time.  I need time. What can you give your customers to give them more time?  Wrap it in a “thanks” and you’d have my business forever.

Host a Free Learning Event
At the local community theatre at which I volunteer, a patron recently tweeted:

Say thanks to your customers

I contacted her to learn more about her “session.” It is a complimentary event she holds to teach communities about safe social media for their kids. The theatre is going to bring her in to hold this event for the families of students at the theatre. It’s a win-win for all involved. Our invitation will cite, “As a thanks for being part of our community, we have organized this complimentary session…” What a great way to give them something that helps the kids we serve.

Don’t Spam Them
Quit trying to sell something to customers every single time you interact with them. Spamming customers doesn’t only mean “sending irrelevant stuff” to their email.  It also means “to drown them in content about yourself, versus about them.”  Respect their social media stream and email inbox by only sharing interesting, useful and helpful content. Post only about something you’re selling after you’ve posted three other pieces of content that are helpful or interesting

Say It To Their Face
Sound too simple?  Maybe it is, yet a simple eyeball-to-eyeball sincere thanks is probably the most effective item on this list.

Spotlight Them on Social Media
Saying “thanks” doesn’t have to be explicit. A thanks can also appear in the form of highlighting successes of those who are customers and supporters of your business.

Curves, International often spotlights members who are working on a special challenge or who have made great achievements in her fitness goals on their page. This also brings their members together and creates community support for that person or effort.

Thank your customers Curves

At Stageworks Theater in Houston, the actors are not paid, as it is community theatre. The actors are also ticket holders for other shows, and customers of the associated acting academy. Once a show is in rehearsal and ticket sales are in full swing, the theatre posts the head shot of each actor in that show with a brief bio. The actors love it. When tagged, their entire Facebook friends list can see the post and these posts are often among the most shared. It’s a win-win for all involved and makes the actors feel appreciated.

Say thanks to customers Stageworks

Ask for Input:  And Respond
Surveys are a powerful tool, if used well.  Rule #1 of surveying is to simply RESPOND.

The “thanks” part comes when you receive the feedback and answer that feedback.    For example, if you conduct a survey and find out that patrons are frustrated with a leaky faucet, answer that concern to your patrons. Perhaps it’s as simple as, “Thanks for letting us know about the leaky faucet…all fixed! Our customers are the best!”

Close the loop. It will serve you well.

Send Business to Them
Know your customers. Know their businesses. Use their businesses when you can.  And even better, talk up their business when you can.

Say It to Their Face
Sound too simple?  Maybe it is, yet a simple eyeball-to-eyeball sincere thanks is probably the most effective item on this list.

Pass it On
If you have an opportunity to give to a philanthropic organization on behalf of your customers, this can be a very effective way to thank your customers. Examples could include:

  • For every bag of dog food that we sell this Friday, we’ll donate $10 to the local animal shelter.
  • A donation to the Food Bank will be made for every season ticket we sell this week.

As we move into this thankful time of year, pick a clever way to thank your customers. Do you have other ideas to share? We’d love to hear from you in the comments.