To say that 2020 was a game-changing year is a considerable understatement. As we are all adjusting to getting back to business, it’s vital that we show our clients how much we appreciate their business. A little thank you can undoubtedly go a long way, so make sure that you consider employing at least one of these 12 suggestions for showing client appreciation.
One of the biggest things you can do to boost your business and show that you value your clients is giving them personalized gifts. Often clients receive cookie-cutter gifts, which, while kind, don’t have the personal touch. It’s a good idea to get to know your VIP clients so you can wow them with personalized gifts.
Is one of your clients a huge golf enthusiast? Why not pick up some personalized golf balls or a certificate for the local links. If you decide to go with the same gift across the board, personalize every item with your client’s name and logo. Even something as simple as high-quality chocolate bars or paperweights can show your appreciation. Ultimately, it’s not the cost of the gift but the thought that counts. Personal touches will undoubtedly be appreciated.
Maximize your social media by using it to promote your client appreciation. A client spotlight series shows your clients that not only do you care, but you’re willing to put time and effort into learning enough about their business to do a write-up on them.
Of course, you will benefit as well. Your client might repost the spotlight. You can also tag them in the post and have access to their social media followers. You can even set up a client spotlight series tab on your website and link back to that for the full article. This gives you additional traffic to your website, all while doing something good for your client.
In today’s world of electronic correspondence, there’s nothing better than a handwritten note. Handwritten correspondence tells your client that you care in several different ways. First, you took the time to write them an actual letter rather than fire off an email. Secondly, it’s a highly personalized gesture that’s unique to them and their company.
Although handwritten correspondence is an excellent way to celebrate the holidays, it’s even better to send a personalized note when your client least expects it. Don’t follow up the letter with a request or only make contact when their contracts are up for renewal. This type of gesture works best when there are no strings attached.
If you’re close to some of your major clients, you should have some insight into other areas of their lives. Specifically, you might know what charities or causes move them. Sometimes, the best gift isn’t one you give to your client but one you provide on their behalf.
Doing charity work or making a charitable donation in your clients’ name is an act of kindness that could solidify your relationship. If your client works with the homeless, consider volunteering at a soup kitchen or organizing a canned food drive. If they are an animal lover, make a donation to your local shelter in their name.
A lot of companies make the mistake of only communicating with their clients when they need something, or it’s time to renew their agreements. Unfortunately, this approach is transparent and doesn’t put the proper value on your customer relationship. If you reach out to clients simply to thank them for their business with no additional agenda, that’s a whole different story.
Take the time to express your gratitude through phone or email outreach, and make it clear that your communication is just that. Your clients will appreciate the courtesy, and it’s a fantastic way to show appreciation that doesn’t cost anything.
Although you won’t have the opportunity to collaborate with all of your clients, there are definitely some that have crossed interests or businesses. Finding a way to work together on a collaborative project is a fantastic way to show client appreciation and foster camaraderie with them.
Even better is if you have the opportunity to refer their services to one of your other partners. Sending them business, especially if they don’t ask, will take your relationship to the next level. Ultimately, referring your clients is an excellent practice to get into, as it’s a selfless act that speaks volumes.
If you have long-term clients you want to say “thank you” to, consider giving them some unexpected freebies. For example, if you run a newspaper and have a valuable client who always buys black and white ads, upgrade them to color free of charge.
One of the biggest mistakes that businesses make is treating their customer relationships like they’re purely transactional. By giving away something for free, especially without being asked, you’re showing that you value the relationship. This sort of gesture will pay off in significant ways, especially for long-term customers.
VIP clients and major donors likely make up a considerable chunk of your incoming revenue and keep your business afloat, so do something spectacular for them. Parties, galas, and private events can cost you some money in the short term, but your significant clients will definitely appreciate them.
You can host a wine tasting, private dinner, or even a show if your budget allows it. Golf outings are fantastic ways to build camaraderie and spend the whole day with your clients. No matter what you do for them, make sure that it’s on the house. If you serve alcohol, make sure that you have an open bar and decline any offers of payment.
Of course, it’s essential to work within your budget. If you want to throw parties or events for your major clients, consider setting aside a fund. Then, once a year, you can have a big VIP party for your closest and most loyal clients.
It’s human nature to avoid asking for feedback. We don’t want to hear something that we won’t like, but constructive feedback is a huge part of showing appreciation for your clients. When you ask for constructive feedback, you’re operating from a place of vulnerability and showing your clients that you’re willing to learn from any mistakes.
Feedback is especially important in instances where things didn’t go exactly as planned. Instead of waiting for the client to complain to you, solicit the input yourself and offer to resolve the issue. Everyone makes mistakes, but owning up to them shows tremendous professional growth and makes you someone that customers want to deal with.
If you have long-term customers, think about setting up some discounts for them. For example, you can eliminate shipping fees or give them the manufacturer price from time to time. The critical thing to do is let your client know that these discounts aren’t for everyone and that you’re extending them because you value your specific relationship.
If you decide to give an exclusive group of clients discounts, the word might get around to your other clients. If this happens, you might have to extend some sort of additional incentive or set up some standard rules. For example, if you run a radio station where clients buy weekly ads, you can offer a discount for the last week of the month.
Make sure that you keep an office calendar full of important dates and celebrate them with your clients. Most companies will send their important clients gift baskets during the holidays. While you should certainly do this, consider celebrating other essential dates with them too.
If it’s your clients’ birthday, send them a box of pastries or something nice for their office. If they’ve just celebrated an important milestone as a company, consider sending a card or flowers to the office.
You can also celebrate those important dates that you both share. Take note of when your client started with you, and send them something thoughtful to thank them for their business. You will set yourself up for another year of success and show them that you’re really paying attention.
If your company rolls out new products or services once in a while, you should consider setting up VIP Access for your clients. You might set up a portal on your website where clients can take advantage of new offers and products or simply let them know what you’re doing individually.
This promotes your company and expresses your client appreciation at the same time. It’s also a great way to solicit candid feedback from some of your most ardent supporters before you roll out your offering to the general public.
Let your clients know that you genuinely care in 2021 with these tips.
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