There is a great quote from the CEO of Starbucks, Howard Schultz that I often reflect on when I think about how my company can keep going above and beyond when it comes to delivering the very best service possible to our customers. “Care more than others think wise. Risk more than others think safe. Dream more than others think practical. Expect more than others think possible.”
It’s the ultimate mantra for an entrepreneur but also one where the unspoken fifth sentence should be, “Always say thank you when others would stop.” Giving and expressing your gratitude isn’t something that should be limited to the holiday season. When it comes to your customers, the “thank yous!” are a daily fixture and one that you can never say too often either. Here are a few of my favorite ways to give thanks for all of the support you receive and to keep the theme of being thankful going year round.
Opt for a Handwritten Note over an Email
If a customer has a truly outstanding experience at your store and sends along a note in the mail or through email detailing who and/or what made the experience so special, take the time to write them back instead of sending along an email. Receiving a handwritten note in the mail from the company CEO or an executive member on the team means that they were able to take the time from their own schedule and give you an extra bit of recognition and thanks. But if you want to take the customer recognition to the next level, consider acting on my next way to recognize your customers…
Offer to do a Highlight in the Company Newsletter on Them
Maybe it won’t be a full newsletter devoted to one sole customer (unless you’d like it to be, then by all means go ahead!) but a highlight on a customer you’ve noticed that has been going places, wrote something amazing up about your business, or even is a lifelong fan of the brand is worth the extra nod in the company e-newsletter (and print edition, if you do those too). As a bonus, see if you can get their Twitter handle to tweet @ them that the feature is live and they’re one of the stars of your newsletter!
Have a Customer Meetup Event
Many businesses interact with customers solely through email or over the phone and may not have a storefront in place that can be visited on a walk-in basis. Arrange and schedule a special day for a customer meetup event. Find a place with plenty of space to meet at, encourage guests to RSVP if they’re in the area, set up an area with appetizers and drinks, and mingle with your customers!
Deborah Sweeney is the CEO of MyCorporation.com. MyCorporation is a leader in online legal filing services for entrepreneurs and businesses, providing start-up bundles that include corporation and LLC formation, registered agent, DBA, and trademark & copyright filing services. MyCorporation does all the work, making the business formation and maintenance quick and painless, so business owners can focus on what they do best. Follow her on Google+ and on Twitter @deborahsweeney and @mycorporation.