The holiday season is a great way to show gratitude to your customers. As thousands continue to deal with the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, there is still so much to be thankful for – especially our customers.
Here are 15 creative ways to thank your customers this holiday season.
1. Say thank you. A simple thank you can go a long way. There is something rewarding about hearing the words “thank you.”
2. Record a thank-you video and upload to You Tube. It’s easy to record a video directly from your mobile device or laptop. Why not record a customized video that expresses how much you appreciate your customer and upload it your company You Tube channel for others to see.
3. Write a thank-you note When I was a child my mother made sure that I sent thank-you notes every time I was given a gift. In this 21st century age of technology, I must admit my thank-you notes are sent via the World Wide Web. Why not send a thank-you note to your customers? It is sure to grab their attention and leave a lasting impression.
4. Give a memorable customer service experience Customer service is key to maintaining customers. Take the time to know the wants and needs of your customers and create a memorable customer service experience that will keep them coming back.
5. Express gratitude on your company website A simple and affordable way to show gratitude to customers is by posting a thank-you on your company website. Create a customer appreciation page on your website and highlight customers each moth.
6. Publicly thank customers on social networks With the growth of social media it is very likely that your customers are active on social media. A great way to show gratitude is to use your company Facebook cover photo to highlight a customer or several customers. Put together a nice photo collage of your customers and upload it as your cover photo or post on Instagram.
7. Write a letter of recommendation Don’t forget your younger customers. If you have a college-age customer, show your appreciation by offering to write them a letter of recommendation to college professors or potential employers.
8. Another great way to publicly thank your customers is to post a thank-you on the New York Women In Communications Gratitude Wall. Your customer will receive an email notification alerting them of the acknowledgment.
9. Endorse a customer on LinkedIn. Take full advantage of LinkedIn’s endorsement feature. Endorse your customers in their specific area of expertise. This will show customers that you care enough about them as a customer and respect them as a professional.
10. Reward your customers by offering discount codes or gift cards Starbucks is great with offering customer discounts and free iTunes song downloads via their mobile APP. Take an assessment of your company and offer useful discount codes or gift cards that will keep customers coming back.
11. Fund a start-up business Are any of your customers about to launch a start-up? Show your appreciation by offering in-kind donation or a small grant to get them started. Offer to design their logo, flyer or website at no cost. You might want to limit this option to exclusive clients.
12. Host a customer appreciation event Invite customers to an after-hours reception. You might want to focus on loyal customers for this event. This would be a great time to introduce a new product or share exclusive content. If budget permits, give a small gift as an additional token of appreciation.
13. Create a loyalty customer program Everyone loves a discount. I’ve personally signed up for several daily deal sites such as Living Social, Goldstar and Groupon. I love GoldStar for its Red Velvet feature, which gives customers the option to select Red Velvet Membership. With this membership I can easily cancel an event without penalty, I receive emails and newsletters before the rest of GoldStar’s members and I get the top-of-the-list seating. Implement a similar discount or membership for your customers. Such a deal is likely to keep customers loyal.
14. Donate to their favorite charity Identify a few of your most valued customers and offer to make a donation to their favorite charity in their honor.
15. Acknowledge customers in your e-newsletter Thank your customers in your next company e-newsletter. Include a link that highlights all of the wonderful things about you customer. Does your customer have a website? Link to their website or blog so that others can see what makes your customer so special.
How will you give the gift of thanks this holiday season?
This post was originally published on the New York Women in Communications blog Aloud.