You’ve always been taught that saying “thank you” is important and courteous. But don’t think of it as being just a polite gesture — it may also help your business succeed. This is not an article about how the business world has turned into a cold, sterile, impersonal environment, but about how your business can have a distinctive edge in the marketplace by simply saying “thanks” every so often.
You can say “thank you” to your customers in a many different ways. Doing so can go a long way in forging long-term relationships. It’s a way to tell your customers that you’re thinking about them as a person, not a number. The method in which you express your thanks — a hand-written note, personal e-mail message or face-to-face conversation — may not be as important as how you say it. Here are some helpful tips:
- Be specific as to why you’re thanking someone. For example, saying something like, “Because of your speedy response, we were able to do this…” is better than simply stating, “We appreciate your business.”
- Express your appreciation in a timely manner. ?Don’t wait an entire week to give thanks.
- Don’t be disingenuous by slipping in a business offer.
- If someone refers your business, make sure to thank them for their referral.
- Write each message in a style that fits your customers’ individual personalities. Are they casual or formal? Are they sticklers for grammar? Do they appreciate humor?
Don’t just save your “thank-yous” for your customers. Your deserving employees need to hear it too. In fact, a 10-year study of 200,000 managers found that companies that often praised their employees for excellent performance were more than three times profitable than those that did not. Of course, the connection between praise and profit may not be scientific fact, the study did note that 79% of employees who had quit their jobs cited lack of appreciation as their top reasons for leaving.
Take it from Mom, and don’t forget to say “Thank you!”