In business, as in all other aspects of life, the power of gratitude is deep, immeasurable, and most welcome. To think that those 2 simple words – “Thank You” – speaks volumes is quite heart-warming.
It has the power to bring back old clients, or to bring in new ones. It tells how well you were brought up, and how much you appreciate the people you come in contact with. Thank you, when uttered sincerely, can mean the difference between success and failure – it is a simple statement that can convince a stranger to trust you.
But in business, there are more than just mere words that can express your gratitude. Here are 5 good ways to show it.
Offer special discounts to loyal customers. Granting favours or giving out freebies is a good way to show your gratitude to your clients for their trust. Think of it – even during the holidays, we give gifts to the people whom we are grateful for having in our lives. Same goes for loyal clients – to show them how grateful we are for their patronage, one of the best ways to show them gratitude (while helping out the business make more sales too) is by giving them a discount on their next purchase.
This way, we are encouraging them to come back while making them feel special and favoured.
Hold special after-hours sales for loyal patrons. Customers always like to feel special. Especially when they intend to give you a lot of business, they don’t really like banging it out with the crowd during one of your regular store sales. They want to get the goodies before the other people who may give you business only once. So why not hold an after-hours sale only for special loyal customers?
Or you could give them an advanced private viewing into your items the night prior to your regular sale for walk-ins? I remember a friend who sold jewellery who became so rich by visiting rich clients in their homes, carrying her items – making it possible for special customers to buy from the comfort of their homes. They love the exclusivity factor, plus they don’t run the risk of whipping out their big bucks in public.
These private transactions also encourage more sales talk – thus making it possible to convince a client to buy more than what she originally intended to purchase.
Send personalized thank you notes and cards. The great thing about receiving an actual note or card is that you have the option of keeping it in a drawer. This is the power of an old-school, personally written thank you card over an email which can be discarded immediately, or sent to the trash without the addressee even seeing the note. Go the extra mile by writing each one of your loyal clients – or at least sign it with your own hand. You will make your customer feel really important.
Give a birthday treat. Ever witnessed those servers gathering together and singing a birthday song (along with a free dessert) to their loyal celebrant-client? That’s an example of a birthday treat which may cost the business owner some money, but will reap so much in return for the business. See the other non-celebrant-diners who are awed by your kind birthday gesture?
All those are potential repeat clients. They know that if and when they patronize your business, they, too will be given the same importance on their special day. And we all know how great it feels to be greeted or gifted on your birthday – whether you’re 5 or 50, 8 or 80. If you have a tighter budget, send a greeting card – even this will show them that you care.
Give loyal customers referrals. In return for the favour of giving you business, why don’t you refer some of your contacts to your clients who are also business owners? For example, you sell mobile phones, and Mr. Smith, a restaurant owner, is a loyal customer of yours. So why not refer his restaurant to your good friends who are looking for a good place to eat?
Make sure to tell your friends that you are the one who recommended them to his restaurant – so that he knows that you have returned the favour. Tit for tat. Helping out each other is a great way to enhance any business relationship.
Never underestimate the power of a thank you – it just might be your key to true and lasting business success.