Any business that wants to stand out will need to perform tasks that their competitors don’t. In our internet-focused setting, the personal, handwritten card from a business to the customer is surprising, refreshing, and noteworthy. This type of physical, delivered message is an excellent way of drawing in your most passionate buyers.
Creating handwritten cards may be an unfamiliar prospect for your business’s marketing strategy. However, making handwritten cards isn’t nearly as daunting as it may seem. Discover the benefits of a handwritten card service and why it’s even more worthwhile today. There are ways to earn the best return on investment and avoid pitfalls. If done correctly, handwritten cards will help you form long-term connections with customers who buy repeatedly and support your marketing efforts.
Today, we’re all drowning in digital messages. With much of our time spent checking email, text messages, and social media notifications, it’s easy to get lost in the noise when businesses try to contact you. In the same sense, your customers will find noticing your online marketing efforts to be more difficult due to the amount of activity in their feeds. Granted, online marketing is effective, especially in obtaining traffic and leads that you can follow up on through more specialized methods.
Consider how physical content such as mailed cards comes into play. Once you have physical addresses of customers, you can send handwritten notes or cards for just about anything. You can remind clients about special sale events, thank them for their patronage with a coupon, and much more. All of this can be done in a more unique and effective way than through social media, email, and other digital means. Additionally, you can employ handwritten cards in your sales strategy to automatically acquire more sales.
However, you’ll want to note one important caveat here: Any physical cards you send to customers must be original, not pre-printed. Most generic, non-specific mail is treated as junk and trashed. Even a message crafted for an individual recipient will have much less impact if it is merely printed out by a machine. A card written by pen and ink will stand out from the rest of the junk mail.
Handwritten letters have an 80% open rate, absolutely trouncing the open rates of email. Thus, your reach is practically guaranteed, unlike with social media where only a small portion of your audience base is likely to see your message. Let’s now take a look at some examples of handwritten cards you could send.
This category is most relevant during the holiday season – the biggest time of year for marketing and sales. Any business can take the time to send a seasonal greeting card to customers to maintain that personal touch. Greeting cards don’t necessarily have to be used for the winter holiday season. Any type of occasion that would be relevant to a customer is a chance to show that you’re still thinking about them and wishing them well. Thinking beyond the obvious occasions will help you make a stronger impression.
For example, let’s suppose that you’re an e-commerce business and your customers have to provide shipping information and their birthdate to create an account and order from you. Since you know your customer’s birthday, you can schedule personal cards to be sent a week before. Almost no businesses take this action. It helps customers associate your business with friends and family who also give cards or gifts. Alternatively, if your audience finds a particular time of year relevant, you can send a card celebrating the start of it.
Your customers regularly sift through mass-produced junk mail such as generic postcards, brochures, and letters. A handwritten greeting card, with a personalized message, is almost guaranteed to be the most noteworthy item in their daily mail pile. Handwrytten offers all types of cards for common greeting card occasions or purposes, from new babies to encouragement and condolences.
Another fantastic way of earning repeat business is by personally thanking them for something. This acknowledgment could be as simple as sending a handwritten card after their first purchase. For example, email hosting services generally need to be tested for a month, since they often bill monthly, before the customer can judge whether they are a good fit for them. Such a business could send a thank-you card to customers nearly a month after the initial subscription, thanking them and asking how they like the service offered them.
In general, the more time that has gone by before a card expressing gratitude is sent, the more impactful it will be. A card thanking your customers for a year of shopping with you, for example, will help customers realize how consistently they have been relying on your business for something important.
If you want to further boost the effectiveness of a thank-you card, include some type of gift with the card to show your gratitude. This gift can be anything simple that you can digitally reproduce, such as a coupon code or gift card. In any case, you have a good chance of some customers thanking you right back and becoming lifelong fans.
A handwritten card service can take much of the headache out of this process by providing high-quality card options. Handwrytten, for example, offers an entire category specifically for business needs, with cards that offer thanks for specific actions or circumstances, such as customer referrals.
Now that we’ve covered a few effective examples of handwritten cards, let’s get into the specifics of designing cards and making them to scale.
The more personalized a card is toward the specific recipient, the better. As for actually making your card as personal as possible, explore a few tips for what works best:
1. Address the message to the recipient’s name. The name on the address is a given, but the message should open with a salutation such as “Dear [first name].”
2. Deliver a message that could apply to your general customer base or a percentage of your customers, but is still specific. Going back to the greeting card example, a gift basket company could open by asking whether their customers have any people left whom they need to get gifts for during the holidays. This question easily transitions into some type of offer or product mention. It’s a scenario that isn’t as generic and forgettable as saying “Season’s greetings.”
3. Regarding the prior point, sometimes it’s best to simply send a “just because” card with no business offer attached. You’ll have to rely on your own judgment for this purpose, but when in doubt, err on the side of caution by not making the card too focused on business. Sending a card celebrating an event in a customer’s life is guaranteed to be well received if there is no sales pitch inside, whereas a card that does invite further engagement will be more hit or miss.
No easy answers exist for making handwritten cards that your customers will personally appreciate. A little common sense and understanding of your target audience will help. Always stay on brand and remember how your customers typically see you so that you don’t send anything too foreign.
Card Design. When it comes to the actual creation of handwritten cards, the process can be a little complicated. You’ll first want to handle the design of the cards you intend to send. This part will most likely be consistent and reprinted with a unique message written inside. You want an attractive and impressive card design worthy of being displayed somewhere in the recipient’s home or office. You don’t want a card that looks cheap or lazily put together. Handwrytten offers a variety of pre-made, quality designs.
Paper Quality. On a similar note, the quality of paper and production is also extremely important. Ideally, you want an industry-standard size, such as 5.5 by 4.25 inches (A2), and on a durable, pleasant-to-touch cardstock. Often, making cards of this caliber without getting any errors or inconsistencies in your process will be a primary hurdle.
Organize. The next key step, if you are serious about making handwritten cards part of your ongoing marketing strategy, is to create a situation where your business gathers and organizes the information needed for the cards.
Some type of secure file or database with customer addresses, names, and any information relevant to the cards will help you build a schedule for when cards should be sent out, and for what specific occasions. The last thing you want is a mix-up, which will cause your efforts to seem artificial. A solid automation service should help you manage this aspect of the project, so be sure to investigate what yours is capable of, or look into getting such a service if you don’t already have one.
Create Cards. Once you know what type of cards you want to use, have the general framework of the interior writing planned out. Also, have the means of composing and scheduling the cards. The next step is to find the labor to create these cards. Naturally, most businesses will already have invested enough money and time into a production system that works for their products. Suddenly devoting time, space, and capital toward handwritten cards may be unsustainable.
For example, a business that sells diet products can’t change a few variables and start mass-producing handwritten cards with the same labor and resources. This effort usually means that a business that wants to send out handwritten cards has two options: 1. Entrust the work to volunteers, which poses major quality and consistency problems. 2. Outsource the card writing and creation service.
Fortunately, the latter option of outsourcing doesn’t have to be costly or frustrating. Handwrytten has made the process of sending individual or bulk handwritten cards as easy for businesses as it is for individuals.
With Handwrytten, a business needs only to select from our wide library of card options, divided into categories. From there, you provide the message you want to send. You even specify the specific writing style, just as when choosing a font for digital text.
In most cases, businesses will need to send many cards at different times and for different reasons, which is why Handwritten makes it incredibly easy to link up with your marketing processes. Handwrytten easily connects with Salesforce, SharpSpring, and Zapier through API integration. Simple spreadsheet uploading makes delivering hundreds of cards at once as easy as delivering one.
Want to simplify the gift process, too? You can easily add relevant gift cards from businesses and include them with your cards automatically.
When your customers receive a physical message it establishes you as a business that cares.
Keep in mind that buying a product or service is ultimately an emotional decision more than a logical one. When your customers receive a physical message from you that they can hold in their hands and read away from their computer, it establishes you as a business that cares enough to do things a personalized way. These positive emotions will pave the way for repeat sales, word-of-mouth marketing, and other fantastic benefits of an engaged customer base.
If you aren’t sure where to begin with a handwritten card service, Handwrytten is happy to discuss your needs and the scope of your plan. We help you increase customer loyalty, stay memorable, and pleasantly surprise the people who keep your business thriving. Contact us today if you’d like to learn more about handwritten cards and what they could do for your customer engagement rates.
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