When was the last time you wrote a personal thank you letter to your client? Or your business associate? Or anyone that has taken extra steps to help you?
I’m sure you are grateful for any assistance you’ve received and you may have even expressed that appreciation verbally to someone, but have you ever put that in words?
Let me tell you – such a letter can work wonders if you do it properly.
Building a good relationship with your contacts is the key to a successful business practice. And that includes getting out there to meet with people; communicating with clients and potential clients through phone calls and emails.
Interestingly not many translators would choose to write a personal thank you letter as a marketing tool. After all, you are not sure if the extra time and effort is worthwhile.
Well, writing letters has certainly worked for me. In fact it is one of the most powerful marketing tools you will ever have for business. It builds credibility and trust faster than any expensive advertising you can imagine. More importantly, you stand out from the crowd because nobody else is doing so.
But like everything else, a personal thank you letter has to be done properly in order to get the best results:
1- Be real
An effective letter has to be written from the bottom of your heart. Sincerity and authenticity will always shine and therefore be appreciated. Don’t use hype or exaggerated words or phrases. People can always see right through if you are faking it. If you don’t feel like writing one don’t do it!
On the other hand we all should learn to be thankful for every little favour we receive. That’s what helps us grow as a person and as a business. Letting people know that they are appreciated will keep them close to you and will more likely keep them in a giving (or buying) mood.
2- Be specific
When you write a personal thank you letter, you have to be specific about what you are thanking for. Don’t try to be clever to say “thank you” for no reason at all. If it doesn’t sound genuine, your letter won’t be well received.
People love to know what they have done to make your life a little better or easier –It’s the details that make your letter more personal.
This reminds of my hubby who writes letters to me on Valentine’s Day. He doesn’t just say “I love you”, he would list a few great reasons why he loves me – Now that’s different! Who doesn’t love personal touches?
It’s the same with business. Make sure your letter doesn’t read boring and bland or just sound like another form letter with no personality at all. Being unique and different always helps you win the race against your competition. It attracts more loyal clients.
3- Be prompt
If you receive a favour you can write a personal thank you letter. Whether it’s referral, a great suggestion, or a client takes you out for lunch or someone award you with a big project, you have grounds to express your appreciation.
Do it as soon as it happens – Any delayed thank-you sounds less sincere and therefore won’t be as well received.
4- Don’t ask for anything in the same letter
Many people make the mistake of asking for a favour too soon. A personal thank you letter should only contain one message – that is only to say “thank you”. If you try to squeeze other content, you are pushing your luck.
You don’t want people to think that your appreciation has some conditions attached, or you are saying thank-you because you want something from people. That could be interpreted as being manipulative – you don’t want to do that!
Instead don’t expect anything from your letter recipient – you write a letter because you feel like doing so. If you have that attitude, good things will happen.