The two most important words in the English language are “please” and “thank you”. You should be using them every single day. So on Thanksgiving weekend not only am I grateful for friends and family, but for all of the customers and clients I’ve had through the years.
It should go without saying that as a business owner you should have great customer service, but you should also make a point of thanking your customers personally. It really goes a long way. The Journal of Marketing conducted a study about the positive reinforcement of customers. They found that customers from one retail store who were called and thanked showed a 70% increase in sales. There was only a 30% increase when they were also told about a sale.
The Journal of Applied Social Psychology did a study to see what would happen to a server’s tips when they simply wrote “thank you” on the customer’s check. They found that their regular customers did indeed give them bigger tips when they did that.
It seems that when customers are thanked without having any sense of reciprocity, they reciprocated even more.
Here are 3 ways to thank your customers on a regular basis:
- Send a thank you card – Cards are used so infrequently these days that they stand out now. Hand write it and include a personal message. To make it really special, include a gift card to a store or restaurant you know they like and frequent.
- Call them – Again, people don’t get phone calls like they used to. I’m constantly surprised when I call someone and they aren’t used to getting phone calls. A phone call is the next best thing to being there and it shows you care.
- Send something you know they would appreciate, like a book on a topic that would interest them about their industry, or an interesting article in a trade magazine they might have missed.
You should wait until Thanksgiving to show your thanks. Do it on a regular basis.