Small "Gifts" Strengthen Customer Relationships

Little steps lead to success.

During the gift-iest time of the year, I am reminded of my favourite gifts ever received – the small ones, the thoughtful ones, the extra ones.

From the home baked cookies to the 'just because' surprises, what made these gifts special is that they had a personal touch. They weren't the most expensive, most extravagant presents – they were the ones that made me feel as though I was worth the extra effort.

Your customers want to feel as though they are worth the extra effort. The 'extra' small things that a company does are usually what a customer appreciates most, and what ultimately strengthen business-customer relationships.

The bows, bells, and whistles of a great email newsletter design, insightful content, or catchy campaign are crucial. They are the big gifts your customer receives from you. But they are expected.

The 'extra' gifts are things like:

The 'P.S.' at the end of your email
The extra video/link/insight/giveaway you don't need to offer but decide to anyway
The handwritten thank you notes or Christmas Cards
The creative project you shared alongside your campaign

The type of small gifts that really elicit moments of surprise or joy, are what help your customer see you as different and themselves as special for receiving these “optional extras”.

Small gift giving requires thoughtfulness and therefore extra effort on your part. But it shouldn't be a chore. It should be that you enjoy giving these gifts, and the customer enjoys receiving them. Where does this joy come from? - from taking notice of your own small moments of inspiration.

Make a mental or physical inventory of all the small moments of inspiration you have, then include them in your customer relations. I like to make what I call my 'Little List of Little Things', where I record these ideas whether I'm going to use them eventually or not.

Just think to yourself:

'What if I sent this to a customer?'
'So-and-so would appreciate receiving this'
'It would be fun to share this insight'
‘This is inspiring/useful.’
'You know what would compliment this, is this.'
'Today I realised that our business is great at this small thing'

We all have plenty of these little thoughts every week, when we are aware of and open to the small things. Though we often let them pass by because we are more focused on launching the big campaign or product. By beginning to take notice of the little things, we become more aware of the wonderful intricacies of what we as a business create. From there, we can share and give.

Happy gifting! (and discovering of wonderful intricacies!)

Oh...and... we keep a “thought for the day” board in the office, that any team member can update if they feel inspired. In the spirit of 'giving', here's our Wednesday thought: “Make today so awesome yesterday gets jealous.“


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