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Appreciation Marketing: What It Is and How To Do It

Do you love your customers? Sure you do! Well, maybe not ALL of them but that's a blog for another time! For the ones you do love, how do you show them? Great service and/or products, on time and as promised, right? Well, that's amazing and wonderful and all but that's the minimum you should do. You should go the extra mile to let them know they're special. You need to implement an Appreciation Marketing strategy.

What is Appreciation Marketing? It's letting your customers know that you value them. But you have to go beyond the generic "Thank You" email that you send to everyone. It shouldn't be a discount on a future order. That's like saying, "Thanks for spending your hard earned money with us! Please spend more!". That's not what we're going for here. An effective appreciation marketing technique should make them feel like they are truly appreciated... because they are.

There are several different things you can do, such as a shout out on social media letting everyone know how awesome they are, offer to take them out for lunch, give them a free upgrade... but for us, it's GIFTS! I don't mean gift cards; those are nice but they don't scream "I appreciate you!", or create a lasting memory, do they? A good gift should fit your business brand, fit the season (don't give out beach towels in December), be useful and good quality.

Are you ready to for the secret sauce? Here it is...

  1. Every quarter, figure out the top 10 (or 5, or 20, or however many you want) customers who spent the most with you during the previous quarter.

  2. Choose a branded product. Like I mentioned before, it should fit your business brand, fit the season, be useful and good quality.

  3. The products don't have to be expensive! $5.00 - $20.00 each is a good range.

  4. Contact us. We can give you some product options that fit your budget and your time frame.

  5. Ship or hand deliver the products to your customers and make their day! Don't talk business; give them the gift, tell them they're appreciated and leave.

What you have just done is made your best customers feel special, you've given them a memorable moment, and the next time they need your product or service you'll be the first one they call. In return, you'll feel pretty good, too. Win-freaking-win.

A couple of Do's and Don'ts

  • DO include a "Thank You" card and sign your name.

  • DO set a yearly budget for this and include it in your pricing.

  • DON'T advertise ahead of time that you're going do this.

  • DON'T post pics online of you giving out gifts to your best customers for 2 reasons.

Customer appreciation goes a long way in keeping your company in business. With the right customer appreciation strategy, you can increase your ROI, generate more sales, keep your loyal customers and gain more through referrals.

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